At every course and workshop I’ve ever taught, individuals have arrived, plonked themselves down in a chair, glanced at the assembled group, heaved a relieved sigh, and said ‘you know, it’s just really hard to do it on your own’ (or words to that effect).

In my experience, it’s not mastering skills that’s the tough bit. We’re all natural storytellers, and techniques are relatively easy to learn. No, the really challenging things about being a writer or poet are:

  • Carving out the necessary time in a busy life.
  • Feeling supported and motivated in the solitary task of writing.
  • Keeping enough perspective and having sufficient, quality feedback to judge what’s working. 
  • Staying focused and patient enough to get to the necessary level of detail.

What marks out a successful from an unsuccessful wordsmith, is not that intangible ‘talent’. It’s two other things. Firstly, the ability and willingness to keep plodding on. The best crafters-of-words are very hard workers. Secondly, knowing how to ask for help when it’s needed.

I find nothing more satisfying than helping a writer, storyteller or poet dust down that manuscript that they’ve been trying to complete for years, and get it to the point of publication or performance. 

There is nothing more conducive to confidence and happiness in life, than doing what we told ourselves we would do, and finishing that book. That’s the moment when we stick our flag on the summit of Everest.

The Details

The mentoring scheme runs from October- September. There are ten places each year. (2016-2017 is full. I am now taking bookings for 2017-2018.) The scheme is composed of twelve hour-long sessions (one a month), via Skype/telephone or in person. The process is tailored to individual needs, and offers:

  • Writing skills
  • Goal-setting/practical advice
  • Support to manage any blocks that come up during the creative process
  • Detailed handouts to support subjects covered
  • A mid-month email 'hello' to check how you're doing
  • Optional experiments (exercises) to undertake between the sessions
  • Written feedback can be offered in lieu of meeting time, if appropriate

The early-bird fee is £1000, available until the end of June. From the 1st July the fee is £1250. It's payable upfront, or in monthly instalments.

The scheme is aimed primarily at those who are serious about completing a longer fiction or non-fiction project, or a series of short projects. It's also for those who want to make an on- going commitment to improving their storytelling skills. I guide you to come up with realistic goals, and to stay on a steady path to completing them. If you take a up a place on this scheme, I promise, I'll be with you all the way :-) 

I look forward to hearing from you if this is what you've been waiting for.

Wondering about applying for the mentoring scheme but nervous, ambivalent, confused or unsure? Read here
Ongoing support is also available for less 'goal-oriented' work. For example, to free-up your creativity, or find your voice in everyday communication. If that's your focus, you're equally welcome to get in touch. 

I'm Interested in the Mentoring Scheme

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