Hi, I'm Dr Georgina Green.*
You've finished the first draft of your novel? Congratulations!
But now you're second-guessing yourself as you try to edit.
I can help.
I'm a book coach and developmental editor; a co-conspirator for debut novelists writing domestic suspense.
Together, we'll craft your work in progress into a compelling, marketable story that's ready to pitch.
"I was struggling to understand how to move from a first draft to a second without getting totally overwhelmed. Now I've worked with you I feel very, very excited about writing my book again!"
Sophie Flynn, Book coaching client.
Revising your work CAN be joyful.
Revising is a process of discovery not destruction.
Feedback is MOST useful when delivered in a spirit of collaboration rather than instruction.
What kinds of writers do I coach?
I work with domestic suspense writers who hope to be traditionally published. They have either finished a first draft or have notebooks full of plans, pages and rough drafts. They want to write clever, psychologically interesting, compelling fiction and they know they can accelerate their growth by working with a writing coach.
I can help you if:
You aspire to write character-led, elegantly engineered fiction.
You want to grow as a writer and invest in your craft.
You want to make sure this manuscript is the best you are capable of writing.
You dream of being published but you know, or suspect, that your work isn't there yet.
You're revising your novel, but you're struggling to see the big picture and diagnose the issues.
You're feeling overwhelmed, uncertain, lost or lonely.
You're writing domestic suspense (or suspect you might be -it's very common to be unsure and that's okay!)
I am not right for you if:
You just want a proofreader.
You want a guarantee of publication.
You want an easy formula for success.
You don't want to push yourself.
You will only consider feedback from a published fiction writer. I'm a coach, an editor, and a published author of literary criticism.
Hi, I’m George. I love seeing aspiring writers announce they’ve got to THE END of their first draft. But I was fed up of seeing them despair as they revise and edit or rush into querying before they were ready. So I became a book coach to help them take their first draft and craft a compelling, marketable book that they can pitch with pride.
I’m a former literary academic proud to have received my education first at the local comprehensive and then Oxford University (I gained a first class undergraduate degree and went on to get a masters and doctorate in English).
My scholarly book was finally published by Oxford University Press in 2014, after a lot of REVISION. My other baby, my son Sam, was 3 months old when the author’s copies arrived on my doorstep.
But she read not a word more. She placed the book reverently on the shelf and disappeared back into her battered paperback crime novel.
I trace my eventual decision to leave academia and retrain as a developmental editor and book coach to that moment. Instead of spending my days in the company of long-dead poets, I wanted to use my analytical mind to help the people striving to connect with readers like my gran. The storytellers of our time.
I feel I have finally found what I was meant to do. The last two years have been full of creative, collaborative conversations with wonderful (very much alive) authors and book lovers, writing the kind of popular, clever, gripping books that people really read.
I’ve found my superpower and my calling.
What about you? I’d love to hear more about your writing.
What writers who’ve worked with me are saying:
I was struggling to understand how to move from a 1st draft to a second without getting totally overwhelmed. Though I was worried about the expense to be honest, now I’ve worked with you I feel very very excited about writing my book again! I feel like I’ve finally got that ‘hook’ that always seemed to be missing that will allow me to really focus on what the main point of the book is.
What I like best about working with you is you’re so easy to talk to! Mostly though it’s having someone who seems as invested in the story as I am. There is nothing better than getting an email from you saying ‘I’ve had this idea!’ and being able to tell you’re excited by it. It makes it feel like it matters and it’s just so nice having someone to share all the plot holes/problems/confusion with and know that you aren’t on your own.
If I’d had your advice to get clear cause and effect in my writing two years ago I would have written my first draft in a much better shape!
Would you recommend me to other writers?
Yes, absolutely. I already have,
Is there anything else about the experience you would like to add?
I honestly can’t say enough good things about working with you. With the level of work you put in and how much I am getting from working with you, you could honestly charge about three times more and I’d still feel like I was getting an incredible deal.
What were your challenges with writing your book before we worked together?
Calmly planning rather than writing without thinking my plot over carefully
What hesitations did you have about working with an editor or book coach?
Admitting defeat at not managing alone. Fear of being laughed at for being stupid! Fear of being told I was talentless or a lost cause!
How do you feel about writing your book now we’ve begun working together?
Excited -which isn’t unusual when I’m writing- but more importantly, I feel supported so if I get stuck I know it won’t be for long and I have someone to talk to about it. This is hugely important to me because often I can find myself overwhelmed with fear of failing at a project and never completing it.
What did you like best about working with me?
I actually thought you cared! Quite apart from the technical advice and writing tools you’ve given me along with the written summaries of our conversations, I feel as if you have my best interests at heart. Having never shared my work with anyone other than my family, this was probably more important than anything else. I felt and continue to feel safe with you.
What part of the process was most difficult for you and how could I have helped make it easier?
Just setting up the computer technology! I’m such a dinosaur!!!! But you helped with that anyway
Would you recommend me to other writers? If so, why?
100%. You have reassured me that I’m on the right track and have really boosted my confidence. I am so looking forward to chatting with you soon. You are a very genuine person and have already gone above and beyond what I signed up for.
Is there anything else about the experience you would like to add?
Before beginning to work with George I found that a lack of direction drained my inspiration. Without feedback on what I’d already written, I found it difficult to continue with the story.
I felt a little nervous about receiving feedback on work that I’d already done (what new writer doesn’t!?) and with the notion of a book coach being an unknown quantity didn’t know what to expect. Before meeting George I had no idea that the resource that is a book coach even existed! To me now, a book coach should be an absolute must for anybody serious about getting themselves published. I was concerned that I would find it difficult to explain an idea that I’ve been developing and contorting for years, but having it understood very quickly helped massively with forming a connection on a personal level, whilst also boosting confidence in my storytelling ability.
Now we’ve begun working together I’m itching to get my book finished! I have a lot of work ahead, but now I know that I’m heading in the right direction, and have fresh inclusions to improve the work already done I’m desperate to get it done!
What I liked best was the fresh perspective, as well as the opinion of somebody that understands how the industry operates. Also, the inclusion of a new arsenal of ideas works wonders to unlock ideas I didn’t know I could have! I find the development of new ideas is easier and better with a second head to bounce them off!
I’d absolutely recommend George to other writers. Being given direction, confidence and inspiration in a friendly, relaxed and easy place and manner is priceless.
“I came to work with you because I suppose I was not sure whether my story worked. While I’ve had a few people read it, I’ve been conscious that most of them would miss probably all of the more subtle details. Would the novel still work if they didn’t understand these things? Would they be prepared to re-read it and see what they missed? The other challenge was knowing how far I could push the unconventional ideas. Overall, I was looking for was an honest appraisal of the novel with an eye on what grabs the reader. Basically, get an idea of:
- What makes it good, and
- What’s getting in the way of it being better?
I have to admit before we started work I suppose I was a bit apprehensive that you would be recommending a wholesale restructuring. Instead I’ve come away with a very targeted set of areas to look at in terms of clarifying to the reader where their attention needs to be; the essential action, the core emotion etc. as well as equipping them to know what to look for and delivering the payoff both intellectually (the non-patronising ‘pat on the head’!) and emotionally.
I’ve tried to develop a thicker skin when it comes to even well-intentioned negative comments, it’s still hard not to get defensive but I think I’m improving. That said, you handled discussing the weaker areas in my work really well- such as the teenage voice- by coming to it from the solution of changing the time setting. Because you had obviously read the novel really closely, I didn’t feel I needed to or wanted to defend my initial decision. You understood what I was going for, and you could see how I could work around the obstacle.
From our previous literary discussions I knew I would be getting the viewpoint of someone who wouldn’t be bewildered by the referential stuff, or why I’d put it there (beyond shameless showing off, to which I plead guilty on all charges). I didn’t quite know what viewpoint you’d come from, so it was a relief when you’d sussed out the tone precisely as I’d intended it. In a lot of ways, this is my attempt to create a particular sensation that I get from my favourite fiction, films and music. From there, it meant I had confidence that any suggestion you made would be sensitive to this idea. And so it proved!
Another worry was my own over-willingness to talk at great length about the writing and how I am more than likely to amble off at a tangent or rapidly skip between ideas, which you coped with magnificently. Over the years I’ve tried to get better at detecting when my audience’s eyes are starting to glaze over, so it was a pleasure not to have to worry about it. I’d say your impressive tolerance for this is a major selling point.
In fact, this was one of the ways you helped. You provided a sounding board where you were comfortably following complex points of plot, tone and characterisation, then feeding that back in a way that I could see for myself the significance of what I had told you.
As I’ve said above, having a clear set of targeted points to work on has been a big help, not least because I can also see where I’m going to take the sequel.
“What a pleasure to work with George. If you’re a writer currently sharing your work with only a trusted few, or if you’ve had the misfortune of being truncated and twisted by an over-subscribed, inattentive editor, then I highly recommend you get in touch with George. I found my initial concerns (would I be patronised? Bamboozled? Sent on a goose chase?) totally disproved. Instead I was listened to, encouraged, and was soon working with renewed clarity and belief, followed by a success I hadn’t dared hope for. Whilst George is hugely likeable she’s not afraid to be critical, but manages this in the most polite way ever, matched with knowledge and experience you’d do well to heed. She’s really rather impressive -don’t hesitate!”