Writing Coach

If I were your writing coach and you were using a typewriter like the one above, in the name of efficiency the first thing I might coach you on is trading in your typewriter for a laptop. But hey—if that’s your process, more power to you. I digress…

Let’s face it: Writing is not for the faint of heart. It is an act that cannot be separated from the self for it is born out of the self, therefore it is an act that is deeply entangled with all aspects of our being. To write is to be immersed in a balancing act that requires diligence, dedication, and devotion from the physical and intellectual, and creation, surrender, and trust from the heart and the spirit. We call this complex dance the creative process. From experience I can tell you it’s a tough road, which is why sometimes we need someone to be a mirror, hold us accountable, and/or help us out of dark corners and dead-end streets. This is where I come in.

I help you approach your project from a new level of mind and awareness. This is, after all, what Einstein meant when he said, “We cannot solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them.”

Whether you are deep in a project, thinking about a new one, or trying to pull it all together, I guide you in creating constructive habits that help keep you moving/writing forward. No matter where you are in your process, by providing you with writing exercises, writing tips and tricks, and other life- and writing-hacks I’ve learned along the way, I assist you in your own creative process by helping you connect with your narrative so you can produce your greatest possible self-expression.

What I Offer:

As your writing coach, I help you:

  • Deconstruct and disentangle whatever it is that is blocking you from writing/producing work

  • Build your book/narrative from the ground up (depending on where you are in the process)

  • Align your vision and goals with routine and structure

  • Identify the factors—either externally, internally, or environmentally—that have you blocked and/or are keeping you from moving forward

  • Mirror what you can’t see in regard to form, structure, character, dialogue, editing, language, tone, mood, voice, and so on

  • Power through your own challenges by sharing my successes, failures, and learnings

Who Am I to Coach You? 

For seventeen years I have made my living as a professional writer. For an additional ten I have been honing my craft in more than 53 journals that began on the evening of September 29th, 1991. If you’re like me, since you’re a writer and maybe math isn’t your thing, that’s 27 years I have been exploring and developing the art of writing. I think it’s fair to say that a great part of my life has been a meditation on writing.

In the professional arena, I first really cut my teeth writing case studies for Microsoft. This involved interviewing CEOs and technology executives to write white papers following a Situation, Solution, Benefits structure. While at the time painful and disinteresting, I can now honestly say that by working with incredibly adroit, attentive editors, this is where I learned the most about the nuts and bolts of writing and editing.

Tired of the technical and craving the creative, I then moved into marketing and advertising at several global ad agencies. There I produced copy under the tutelage of a variety of top-notch creative directors for some of the world’s biggest brands. After a “Copy Director” title landed in my lap, nine months later I was fortunate enough to make the blind leap of faith from the corporate world into the book-writing/editing world. The closest I have come to the corporate world since leaving my 9-5 gig was working with a Fortune 500 innovation executive to develop a book proposal.

Since then I have ghostwritten and/or edited blogs and books for two New York Times bestselling authors. While working with one of these authors, I worked very closely with editors at a top New York City publishing house. To round out my experience, I have also sat on the other side of the table when I worked with an editor to clean up my own book.

The bottom line is, for years I have produced a large body of work on a regular basis. During this time, beyond honing my craft, I have also been working on developing my internal life by focusing my consciousness on joy, gratitude, intention, surrender, trust, healing, expansion, and creativity. In my experience, when these aspects of self are in alignment, we produce our best work. In this sense, should you be open to it, or if the conversation evolves in that direction, you also get a little life coaching under the guise of a writing coach.

My job then—my goal and my desire—is to inspire you and help you align to your highest good so you can be the greatest expression of yourself.  

My Expectations For You:

Life happens. It’s undeniable and understandable, but at the same time I expect from my clients:

  • A high-level of commitment to your craft and this process, because that commitment is also a reflection of your commitment to your life

  • You will give a whole-hearted, concerted effort to do the exercises I give you, whether they are writing exercises or exercises designed to work with your subconscious and/or develop your intuition and spiritual self

  • You will exhibit the same level of trust, mutual respect, and dedication that I will show you

How It Works:

First, we set up a 20-minute conversation to talk about your project, explore how I can help you, and to ultimately see if we are a fit for one other. If we decide we want to work together, we develop a plan of action whereby I work with you for one hour, once a week, for a minimum of three months (12 coaching calls) so as to help you execute on your plan.

If you want more information on how I approach writing and/or building a book, please visit my Ghostwriting page. It’s worth noting that how we spend your hour is up to you. If you want me to look at something you wrote or provide feedback/editing during your hour, I’m happy to do it. Just be aware that editorial services are separate.

Want To Chat?

Drop me a line on the contact page and let’s get this party started.

~ Tim Shields