Writing & Author Services

Everyone needs a helping hand — sometimes!

When you have too much to do,
you don't know where to start,
you don't know what comes next,
and you don't know what to say…

You might just need a little guidance, and in some cases a lot of guidance. Writers and authors go through many different phases while writing -- from madly typing away, to staring at a blank page in dismay, or procrastinating just like everyone else does. We have whiny days, weepy days, angry days, and days where we're just lost and need a hand.

If you earn your stripes as an author, you can bang out copy even when you're feverish or hungry or angry or bored. Not everyone's there yet.

Then there's the wide array of skills that go into publishing: from writing and grammar through design, formatting, marketing, and lastly public speaking. It can take a long time to learn all the skills involved if you want to take care of the entire process without any outside help.

That's why I'm here. It's really much easier if you get some help.

Background

I started writing when I was 11 years old, and nearly everything I learned about computers, from typing through graphic design, related to my ability to work on my own books and other documents. These also eventually became skills I used in the workplace and for my own business. So I was initially self-taught, but learned a great deal on-the-job.

After 35+ years of writing — I have the ability to write almost anything at almost any time. It's a skill to be able to set aside my own feelings, to don a character's skin, whether in the story or the style and personality of an author I'm writing copy for or editing/refining for, and just get the job done.

Because I have all these skills, I can leverage them on behalf of authors as well. I can help you stay motivated, find your voice, hone your style, organize your project, and so on.

Author Services

Here's a rundown of the services available to authors at different stages:

Software Selection & File Setup

You can open ANY program and start writing. Don't spend any time on fussing with this, just get writing. But maybe between the mad pounding on the keyboard, when you feel drained of words at the end of the day -- maybe you'd like to consider software that will help you work more easily.

The right software and template for your project can help expedite the publishing process, and some software is easier to write in while others are easier to format in. Knowing your goals can help us select the right tools to create your book. A template or stylesheet set-up can help you see what your book might look like as you write, and save time in the editing & formatting process. This can be done before you start, or part-way through the process of writing.

Book Proposal & Query Letters

In many ways, your book proposal is a roadmap: from bio & credentials, to target audience, and a mini marketing plan, your book proposal becomes your roadmap that will make writing your book much easier, help you develop a unique niche amongst competitive books, and give you a checklist of ways to market your book when it's done.

One-to-one guidance on developing your proposal and/or query letters. Should be done as early in the writing process as possible because sometimes publishing companies want input before you start writing. And even self-publishing authors can send out query letters to agents and write up a book proposal as a planning tool. What's the worst that can happen? Someone wants to publish your book? You can do this at any time during the process -- as part of the pre-writing phase, as a break in the middle of working on the project, or even after your manuscript is completed and you're waiting on your editor.

Writing Process Skills

Many people want to write -- books, blogs, memoirs, etc. -- but have no particular skill in the writing process and don't know where to start. If you've never written outside of school assignments, or you feel you need to improve your writing, then this is for you.

Individual or group tutoring sessions on building up your writing and creative writing muscles. Creating and perfecting style, voice, action, building reader interest, communicating clearly, word choices, building prose in a rhythm, organizing essay-length pieces (such as blog posts, chapters), etc.

Overall Project Strategy

You may know the topic that you want to write on, but don't know where to begin. In school, we often skipped the much-encouraged pre-writing process and jumped straight into essays. It wasn't hard to keep 4 or 5 points in mind or get a passing score. Now you're striving for something more professional or sophisticated, and there aren't just 4-5 points to keep in mind anymore. That's where you need a strategy for how to write.

Individual or group sessions for pre-writing, planning and brainstorming, outlining, and coming up with project goals, scheduling time to write, strategies for defeating writer's block, etc. Chapter, subchapter & overall document structure, front matter, back matter, blurbs, executive summaries, etc.

Writing Coaching

the only way to become a better writer is to write, but developing style, finding an authentic voice, speaking to the reader, being readable, banishing writer's block, staying motivated -- these are all a combination of skills and getting out of your own way, and they are coachable.

Being a writer means becoming a hermit in many ways. It doesn't matter whether you're doing technical writing, non-fiction or fiction, writing is almost always a solitary sport. It can be difficult to handle isolation for hours at a time while maintaining your energy level and focus. Coaching can help you stay focused, on-track, and help with skills to improve writing, defeat distractions and make progress.

Confidential coaching sessions give you a sounding board, someone to hold you accountable, a resource to help you maintain your motivation, plan for success, stay on-track, or help you out of a snag when you hit it. Individual sessions are entirely tailored to your needs while group coaching moves a group of writers through the process and to also hold each other accountable, collaborate on problems, and share successes and issues with.

Once your manuscript is done

Please see my Book Development & Self-Publishing Support Services page for services that you may need once your manuscript is completed.


Testimonials

It has been my book "midwife" Criss Ittermann who has been in the trenches with me through these past four years through the various revisions, advising and supporting me — especially at times I wanted to give up and just put the whole project aside. To Criss goes my deepest gratitude and appreciation for countless hours of work in brainstorming sessions, as well as feedback on concepts and manuscript revisions. Criss has been that other set of eyes who has seen what I could not see. She has been the ultimate coach who has asked all the right questions to guide my way. —Sheila Pearl, Ageless & Sexy: The Magic of Sensuality Acknowledgements, Newburgh, NY

If you want to learn more about my services and availability, then please fill out my contact form below, or pick up the phone and call 845-820-0262:

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