Narrative Coaching—what is it and who needs it

What is narrative coaching? How can a fiction writing coach help me with my crime novel, science fiction novel, or historical fiction novel?

Narrative coaching can take many forms, and what exactly it involves depends on the author's needs and goals. This fully customizable service is ideal for early-draft manuscripts, partials, stuck manuscripts, and novel outlines—and even would-be outlines. The main idea here is that your writing coach will support and guide you toward your next draft or revision.

Outline development (structural focus)

You work with a professional book coach to infuse your story concept with strong emotional draw—the quality of a piece of fiction that keeps readers eager to know what happens next. Following some preliminary discussion and planning, we recommend three feedback rounds to hammer out a structural synopis, whether chapter by chapter or scene by scene.

Prose development (scenic-writing focus)

Emotional draw is a pillar of storytelling. The other pillar is immersion—the quality of a piece of fiction that transports readers into another time and place. Immersion is achieved through scene-based writing and a careful balance of showing and subtle telling

Concept development

This involves a series of phone or Zoom calls where authors can talk their way through plot ideas, characters, setting, and more. Brainstorming with a fiction coach can help you start a project off on the right foot. Also, it can be immensely helpful just to get your ideas out of your head and into the air.

Narrative assessment

This service is a pared-down version of a developmental edit. As with a dev edit, a narrative assessment involves a deep reading of your manuscript which culminates in a thorough feedback report intended to guide your next revision. (The dev edit also comes with scene-by-scene annotations added directly to your manuscript; a narrative assessment does not include these annotations.)

Is fiction coaching right for you?

Don't worry if you're not sure what service you require. Our editors are happy to take a look at an excerpt and/or synopsis to help you decide the best way forward.

Ready to get started? Drop us a line!

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The Darling Axe offers author coaching, crime fiction coaching, romance novel coaching, fantasy writing coaching, science fiction writing coaching, and more

About the Darling Axe

We are professional editors as well as award-winning writers. We understand the intense effort and emotional investment you have poured into your work. It's our job to help you take your manuscript to the next level.

Work with a professional fiction editor from the Darling Axe: manuscript development and book editing services

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