What Is a Book Coach and Why Do I Need One?

A fitness plan for your manuscript.

Some person wearing a whistle telling you to do three more laps around the track, or that, yes, you can do that final push-up in your set–that makes sense. But a book coach? It’s not as if all you need to get through your novel is someone standing behind you telling you that when you finish that final paragraph you’ll be golden.

More than the name implies, a book coach is a mix of therapist, editor and personal cheering section. Some people hire book coaches to meet all of those needs; others for just one. Either way, a book coach can deliver what you need, even if you aren’t sure what that is.

Every writer will get something different out of a book coach because every writer has different needs. For example, [Esther] Hershenhorn, [a] children’s book coach, says some writers just need a critique of a picture book. Others need help moving the story to a more meaningful level or help with research so they can better understand their competition. And still others may think they have a book when, in fact, it’s an idea that works better as a magazine story.

For more, including knowing when to hire a coach, read: Why You Should Hire a Book Coach

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