Limiting Belief: I Should...

Limiting Belief: I Should...

You know you’ve heard this phrase a million times: “You should…” It’s part of the vernacular of our culture, but it can be a limiting belief when it comes to writing…

Limiting Belief: “My Ideas aren’t good enough"

Limiting Belief: “My Ideas aren’t good enough"

Writing involves dedication and time—so much time! How can any normal person find the time to write an entire book? In reality, this is a limiting belief that CAN be overcome…

Limiting Belief: "I don't have enough time"

Limiting Belief: "I don't have enough time"

Writing involves dedication and time—so much time! How can any normal person find the time to write an entire book? In reality, this is a limiting belief that CAN be overcome…

Limiting Belief: "I'm not a writer"

Limiting Belief: "I'm not a writer"

When people say, “I’m not a writer,” what they really mean is they are holding on to limiting beliefs. They might be nervous about others reading their words, afraid they’ll never live up to their personal expectations, out of practice with their writing, unsure of how to begin, etc. It’s time to banish those limiting beliefs…

How Do Limiting Beliefs Apply To Writing?

How Do Limiting Beliefs Apply To Writing?

Limiting beliefs are mental hurdles that prevent us from doing what we want to do. They give us a million excuses to settle for mediocrity, and are rampant in the writing world…

What IS Book Coaching Anyway?

We’re your friendly neighborhood book coaches!

We’re your friendly neighborhood book coaches!

When I tell people I’m a book coach, I often get a blank stare and a “What now?”

Fair enough. It’s not as common a title as “accountant” or “teacher.” As far as I know, my business colleague, Jessica, and I are the only two book coaches in the Twin Cities (correct me if I’m wrong!). So, what do we actually do? Do we train books to do tricks? While I would love to be able to train a book to flap around the room or mop my floor (ala Fantasia), that’s not quite what we do. We don’t train books, we train people.

Our specialty is coaching ordinary folks from all walks of life on how to turn their ideas into a book.

For many people, the prospect of sitting down and writing 60,000 or 85,000 words is beyond daunting—it’s enough to make palms sweat and brains start flipping around in cartwheels. Believe me, I know this feeling well. When I sat down to write my first novel in 2009, I had never written more than 25 pages in my life (and that was for a research paper in college).

Writing at the Guthrie Theater

Writing at the Guthrie Theater

But then something miraculous happened:

I wrote 30 pages.

And I thought, “Wow, if I can write this many pages, I can probably get to 50.”

So, I did.

I reached 50 pages, and just kept going.

80 pages. 100. 200.

By the time I finished that novel, I had written well over 150,000 words or close to 500 standard pages! (I ended up cutting a good deal of those pages during the editing process, but that’s another topic entirely…)

Although I’ve learned a lot in the ten years following my first novel, that first project taught me a valuable lesson: I could sit down and write a novel-length manuscript. And, most importantly, I could do it while working 50+ hours per week, maintaining a relationship, and practicing good self-care (by regularly working out and cooking dinner at home).

Two years after I authored that first novel, I started freelance writing and editing, helping both individuals and businesses with their projects. To date, I’ve worked on over 40 different book projects of all genres and styles. To name a few…

  •  A Vietnam helicopter pilot’s memoir

  •  A career coach’s leadership book

  • A book geared toward teenagers to promote self-healing instead of self-harming

  • A work of historical fiction revolving around Saint Paul’s gangster scene of the 1930s

  • A yoga studio owner’s memoir/self-help hybrid book

  • Science fiction, centering on a robotic criminal investigation unit

  • A business book/essay collection designed to help women of color navigate toxic work environments

 Even though I’ve worked with a wide variety of people on wildly different projects, I’ve noticed certain commonalities emerge between them—commonalities I like to think of as Success Practices. By studying these Success Practices, Jessica and I have been able to distill them down into a five-step coaching program. The program focuses on articulating the book’s main message, defining the target audience, generating and tracking ideas, setting an accountability plan (that you’ll actually follow), and creating a detailed and effective outline.

Focusing on these success practices, we walk our coaching clients through the critical steps necessary to write their first draft within a few months.

Anyone can do it, no matter the skill level, other responsibilities, or background. We truly believe that.

So, that’s book coaching! Through a step-by-step program, we help people turn their ideas into books. We also act as accountability partners to make sure our writers are actually writing! Even the most driven and ambitious people occasionally need a gadfly to nip at their heels.

How about you? Do you have a book idea too good to ignore?

If you’d like to talk about your idea, send us a note. Let’s grab a cup of tea and talk about writing!

Phone-Free Concert, Being Present, & Writing

Phone-Free Concert, Being Present, & Writing

Our attachment to experience-sharing has put a filter on our existence. We view things through a foggy lens — one governed by photo ops and jealousy points. We validate our actions by how many views and likes we receive. And that’s so…messed up. 

Writing 50,000 words in a month may not work for you.

Writing 50,000 words in a month may not work for you.

For the third time in two and a half years, I’ve written 50,000 words in a single month. Here’s what I learned and why I’m not planning on doing it again…

The emotional journey of writing someone else’s memoir

The emotional journey of writing someone else’s memoir

Writing is soul work. It forces you to explore squishy, emotional areas that most people try to avoid. It’s highly personal. Memoir-writing amplifies that. And, if you're writing someone else's memoir, there's a whole lot of extra pressure that goes along with it...

Hey 80% of Writers: Your Verbs Are Boring

Hey 80% of Writers: Your Verbs Are Boring

The most exciting plot twists or action scenes can be slowed down by dull verbs. Don't let it happen to you! Here's why verbs are important and HOW to make them SHINE.

3 Clever (and 3 completely ordinary) Ways Of Keeping Up Your WRITING MOMENTUM

3 Clever (and 3 completely ordinary) Ways Of Keeping Up Your WRITING MOMENTUM

The excitement of a new writing project can buoy you for a while. You are pushed forward by the thrill of embarking on a new adventure, a brand new path. But, after a while, you may find yourself slowing down...How do you keep up your momentum?? I explore 6 ways...