One-on-one Coaching for Writers
Personalized creative guidance. Offered in Grand Rapids and online.
Sometimes our writing journey brings us to moments when personalized support would be helpful. Maybe you're working on a special project, overcoming a creative block, or want to strengthen a specific part of your writing. One-on-one coaching at Voice & Vessel is rooted in my training as a leader of the Amherst Writers & Artists Method, as well as over 20 years of listening, learning, and beginning again as a practicing writer.
The deepest listening I share with writers happens in one-on-one sessions. I help you connect dots between ideas, notice patterns in raw material and revisions, celebrate breakthroughs, and ask questions to get to the heart of your words. The journey is different for every writer, and I’m devoted to making it safe, energizing, and attentive. That’s why in 2019, I’m offering coaching in a focused way, to give writers a deeper practice space and my best energy:
“With each day I feel like I'm discovering something new in my writing, and in myself; it's a release for me and I feel like I know what I'm doing, which is a first. I also feel like I'm writing well; writing in a style that I love to read which sort of completes me and helps me to write more. I think I'm on the right track to finding my voice. Thanks for being a motivating, down-to-earth teacher.”
A year-long journey called The Ground of Making, which will be my most immersive coaching experience and open to just four writers in 2019.
A nine-session package and six-session package, with writing reviews included in both options.
One-time sessions for discovery (for new writers) and for making space (for writers with an existing coaching relationship with me).
Availability in 2019
I’m so grateful to the many writers who have asked me to be a part of their writing journeys. In 2018, my coaching waiting list tripled. I was also scheduling further out than ever before, which didn’t always sync with the creative rhythm of writers I’ve supported from the start. After reflecting on this, I’ve made adjustments for the year ahead. All packages below have limited availability, with the intention of coaching about six writers at a time in 2019. I’ll keep this page updated as spots fill or become available for different options. Please say hello if you have any questions.
The Ground of Making: One Year of Creative Support
12 months of coaching, Writing Reviews & More
For those seeking a deeper connection to their voice, a sense of rootedness in their creative life, and a space where experimentation, hands-on learning, and true discovery can unfold. I’m inviting four writers to join me for The Ground of Making, a 12-month journey. This program is now full. Registration will open again in late 2019, and you can join the waiting list here.
Paths to Your Creative Practice
Nine-session package | $750
Nine one-hour coaching sessions, in Grand Rapids or online (using Zoom). The schedule/pacing will be set during our first session, based on what will best support your goals and journey.
Close reading and review of up to 6,000 words of prose or 9 poems over the course of our sessions (which can be broken into up to three reviews). My notes will be written on either on a printed copy of your piece(s) if we’re meeting in person or via Google docs if we’re meeting virtually.
SIX-session package | $500
Six one-hour coaching sessions, in Grand Rapids or online (using Zoom). The schedule/pacing will be set during our first session, based on what will best support your goals and journey.
Close reading and review of up to 4,000 words of prose or 6 poems over the course of our sessions (which can be broken into up to two reviews). My notes will be written on either on a printed copy of your piece(s) if we’re meeting in person or via Google docs if we’re meeting virtually.
Discovery Session | $195
A one-hour coaching session, in Grand Rapids or online.
Close reading and review of up to 2,000 words of prose or 4 poems (up to six pages) prior to our session. I’ll offer supportive comments throughout the writing and prepare a note with themes, questions, creative possibilities, and personalized exercises. When we meet, we’ll go over this and dig into the creative questions or challenges calling to you now. You’ll receive practices to try, ideas to get to the heart of your writing, and energy to keep going.
Making Space: One Session, for returning Writers | $60
Sometimes one session is what’s needed to find the spark again. One-hour sessions can make space for reflection on a project, dialogue about your creative routines, writing with prompts, ideas for publishing your work, and more. I ask questions to help your voice and instincts guide our time, and my focus is on ways to strengthen your writing as a practice. Because of the nature of these sessions and my hope to bring folks deeper into their practice, these sessions are only available to returning writers.
Want a thoughtful response to a longer project, body of work, or the latest draft of a book? I offer custom estimates for manuscript reviews based on the size of the project. Please say hello to share a bit about your writing, and we can explore whether we’re a good fit.
Why get the support of a writing coach?
I support a range of folks as diverse as the stories they tell: new writers who are getting to know their voice and creative routine, writers who want to polish and publish their work, professionals who want to sharpen their writing skills, and so on. You may be looking for guidance to:
Use your voice more confidently and understand how it's coming through in your drafts.
Find the thread that brings together raw material, drafts, and other writing you’ve collected over time.
Open up to the story you want to share and go deeper into an idea you're exploring.
Overcome blocks or anxiety in the creative process.
Build a consistent writing practice or re-energize your creative routine.
Plan and start a new creative project.
Take a fresh look at a manuscript you're revising and find ways to strengthen and complete it.
Decide whether a piece is ready for publication and find a good home for it.
Wherever the journey takes us, it’s always rooted in your writing and your voice. This is essential to how I support writers, and I believe it’s a secret to being “in our element” as a creative folks. While there’s such a thing as good practice, I don’t prescribe templates or a one-size-fits-all writing process. I believe our own writing can be our best teacher. Sometimes we need help to find (and trust!) the way, but ultimately, it’s our own voice calling us out. No one can give you that, and no one can take it away.
About Your Writing Coach
I'm Emily Stoddard, a writer with over 20 years of experience in making meaning with words. My writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Radar, Ruminate, New Poetry from the Midwest, Pilgrimage, Tinderbox Poetry Journal, Gravel, Manifest-Station, An Alphabet of Embers, Watershed Review, Menacing Hedge, and elsewhere. I write a mix of poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and the in-between-indefinables, because I’ve found that stretching in one area inevitably makes the writing stronger in another. In addition to supporting writers, I've helped over 40 nonprofits and businesses tell their story. Learn more about my background here.
New workshops are yet to come for 2019… so if coaching doesn’t end up being our path together this year, I hope you’ll consider writing with me in other ways. Sign up for studio letters to learn more.