Manuscript Coaching & Critique 

Three-Month Program 

Testimonials

Why Me?

Blue Pencil Session

One-on-One ZOOM Call

A Three-Month Program To Help You Revise Your Manuscript

I came to Lauren faltering, even with the finish line in sight. Her keen eye, light touch, and deeply compassionate nature allowed me just the right support to move through the stuck place and finish my draft.  Lauren was undaunted by the challenging material in my story. She helped me see what I did well, and hand-selected lessons so I could improve the weaker parts of my text. My manuscript and I are both better now, thanks to Lauren’s skillful coaching.

Jessica Waite

Lauren Carter
2021-08-25T18:20:36+00:00

Jessica Waite

I came to Lauren faltering, even with the finish line in sight. Her keen eye, light touch, and deeply compassionate nature allowed me just the right support to move through the stuck place and finish my draft.  Lauren was undaunted by the challenging material in my story. She helped me see what I did well, and hand-selected lessons so I could improve the weaker parts of my text. My manuscript and I are both better now, thanks to Lauren’s skillful coaching.
0
0
Lauren Carter

So, you wrote a book!

First of all: congratulations! It’s no small thing!

But, truly, it’s through rewriting and revision that your story will start to sing. 

Whether you’re on the first draft or the fifth, if you’re struggling to engage with this stage of the process, I can help – through weekly feedback on your work and twice monthly ZOOM conversations to tackle your questions and help you get (and stay) connected with your work.

My insights on narrative arc, character, point-of-view, and other craft and writer-life issues will help you broaden your conceptualization of what you want to say – and how best to say it, both through novels and memoirs. 

You will deepen your understanding of your characters, themes, structure, and all of the ways you’ve chosen to tell your story “while not knowing what you are doing,” as Jane Smiley so wisely says in 13 Ways of Looking at the Novel.

“You can’t pick the ideal point of view, the right protagonist, the ideal plot, or the perfect setting; you can only pick ones that offer some benefits and some deficits,” she writes. In this three-month program, we will bring a broader awareness to these creative choices so you can consciously expand and enrich your book.

Revision is my favourite part of the writing process. Let me help you deepen your relationship with your work, grow as a writer, improve your manuscript, and ultimately create a richer and better book!

 

Need less intensive help or want to try out my critique services? Read about my Blue Pencil Critique and Coaching service.

How Does It Work?

Part coaching, part manuscript evaluation, part ongoing substantive edit, this program will guide you into a deeper relationship with revision. Through weekly accountability check-ins and short, curated lessons on writing craft and process, you’ll broaden your knowledge of writing, strengthen your practice, and make clear progress towards finishing your book!

 What you get:

6 one-on-one ZOOM calls

A plot outline evaluation

Inline editorial notes on up to 20,000 words of your manuscript

12 Monday morning accountability check-ins and biweekly mini-lessons curated specifically for you!

 THE PRACTICALITIES

The program starts three times a year: in September, January, and April. I encourage registration at least a week in advance so we can determine our calendar of ZOOM dates and manuscript submissions. 

The cost for the three-month program is $1395.  You can pay in full or month-by-month at $360/month (with a commitment in place for the full term), and I also offer a senior discount of 10% (please contact me for either option). 

I only accept three clients each session, so if you want to get going on your novel, click the orange button to purchase and choose your start date! I’m excited to help you get closer to fulfilling your writing goals! 

photo by Anthony Schellenberg

Interested but need funding? Check out your provincial arts councils, the Access Copyright Professional Development Grant, and the Canada Council for the Arts to see if you might be eligible for grant funding. You could also try a blue pencil critique session with me or take a class to start!

Here’s what some of my clients have said

I am so very grateful to you for your editing suggestions and your ongoing encouragement. I didn’t have the confidence to send writing off for publication last year, but your help this year built my confidence, strengthened my writing, and gave me courage to begin submitting my pieces - and now one is being published in an anthology! Thank you for these gifts!

Tabatha Nordby

Lauren Carter
2021-06-01T21:47:47+00:00

Tabatha Nordby

I am so very grateful to you for your editing suggestions and your ongoing encouragement. I didn’t have the confidence to send writing off for publication last year, but your help this year built my confidence, strengthened my writing, and gave me courage to begin submitting my pieces - and now one is being published in an anthology! Thank you for these gifts!
Before I did my blue pencil critique session with Lauren I wasn’t sure if I’d ever finish my novel. My revisions weren’t going well and I had encountered several structural problems I didn’t know how to resolve. After meeting with Lauren I feel excited about it again. She was incredibly insightful and helped me build confidence in my creative process. She provided me with the tools, knowledge and resources I need to restructure my novel. Lauren also helped me create a clear plan I can follow to accomplish my goals without feeling so overwhelmed.

E. B. Page

Lauren Carter
2019-03-19T19:50:27+00:00

E. B. Page

Before I did my blue pencil critique session with Lauren I wasn’t sure if I’d ever finish my novel. My revisions weren’t going well and I had encountered several structural problems I didn’t know how to resolve. After meeting with Lauren I feel excited about it again. She was incredibly insightful and helped me build confidence in my creative process. She provided me with the tools, knowledge and resources I need to restructure my novel. Lauren also helped me create a clear plan I can follow to accomplish my goals without feeling so overwhelmed.
Lauren is a wonderful coach! She was always thoughtful, supportive, insightful and ready with just the right readings and resources. These days, the fact that I’ve committed to keeping my writing time [when faced with childcare challenges], rather than just throwing up my hands and losing steam (as has happened in the past) says a lot about how far I’ve come in the two months I’ve been with her! I really *feel* like a writer who is actively engaged in her practice! I am so excited about what is to come, and I’m so grateful for all she’s done to help me along the way!

Tara Borin

Lauren Carter
2018-05-06T15:42:43+00:00

Tara Borin

Lauren is a wonderful coach! She was always thoughtful, supportive, insightful and ready with just the right readings and resources. These days, the fact that I’ve committed to keeping my writing time [when faced with childcare challenges], rather than just throwing up my hands and losing steam (as has happened in the past) says a lot about how far I’ve come in the two months I’ve been with her! I really *feel* like a writer who is actively engaged in her practice! I am so excited about what is to come, and I’m so grateful for all she’s done to help me along the way!
I’m writing regularly on my own stuff now. This is something I’ve been wanting to do for 20+ years, but I’ve always had reasons why I couldn’t keep it up: the year-end is due, I have freelance writing deadlines, I have a 10+ item list of admin tasks; I’m a Mom; I’m busy! Lauren, very patiently, supportively, and non-judgmentally, gave me resources that spoke to my situation, put up a mirror to my “crazies”, and encouraged me to kick them down one by one. It was quite a journey and I’m eternally grateful!

A.G.

Lauren Carter
2018-05-06T15:43:19+00:00

A.G.

I’m writing regularly on my own stuff now. This is something I’ve been wanting to do for 20+ years, but I’ve always had reasons why I couldn’t keep it up: the year-end is due, I have freelance writing deadlines, I have a 10+ item list of admin tasks; I’m a Mom; I’m busy! Lauren, very patiently, supportively, and non-judgmentally, gave me resources that spoke to my situation, put up a mirror to my “crazies”, and encouraged me to kick them down one by one. It was quite a journey and I’m eternally grateful!
I was stuck, and just could not make myself get to my desk and start working again even though I had projects waiting. Lauren's course really kick-started me. I found the connection with the other participants and the conversations triggered by the course material to be enormously helpful and inspiring. I am back at my desk, committed to a regular writing practice again. Thanks, Lauren, this course was exactly what I needed to get working again.

Nancy Hall

Lauren Carter
2019-03-15T20:46:42+00:00

Nancy Hall

I was stuck, and just could not make myself get to my desk and start working again even though I had projects waiting. Lauren's course really kick-started me. I found the connection with the other participants and the conversations triggered by the course material to be enormously helpful and inspiring. I am back at my desk, committed to a regular writing practice again. Thanks, Lauren, this course was exactly what I needed to get working again.
Lauren's blue pencil sessions have helped me to feel more confident and to progress as a writer. Her keen eye for detail and helpful insights have enabled me to bring more nuance and expression to my poetry. I have appreciated having both written notes and a ZOOM call for discussion. Lauren has a supportive, encouraging approach, and it is a joy to work with her.

woman standing alone overlooking a forest landscape

Kerry Galenzoski

Lauren Carter
2021-08-25T22:24:13+00:00

Kerry Galenzoski

woman standing alone overlooking a forest landscape
Lauren's blue pencil sessions have helped me to feel more confident and to progress as a writer. Her keen eye for detail and helpful insights have enabled me to bring more nuance and expression to my poetry. I have appreciated having both written notes and a ZOOM call for discussion. Lauren has a supportive, encouraging approach, and it is a joy to work with her.
I’m feeling really great about the writing; thank you so much for helping me get my practice back!

E.C.

Lauren Carter
2018-05-06T15:43:50+00:00

E.C.

I’m feeling really great about the writing; thank you so much for helping me get my practice back!
I came to Lauren faltering, even with the finish line in sight. Her keen eye, light touch, and deeply compassionate nature allowed me just the right support to move through the stuck place and finish my draft.  Lauren was undaunted by the challenging material in my story. She helped me see what I did well, and hand-selected lessons so I could improve the weaker parts of my text. My manuscript and I are both better now, thanks to Lauren’s skillful coaching.

Jessica Waite

Lauren Carter
2021-08-25T18:20:36+00:00

Jessica Waite

I came to Lauren faltering, even with the finish line in sight. Her keen eye, light touch, and deeply compassionate nature allowed me just the right support to move through the stuck place and finish my draft.  Lauren was undaunted by the challenging material in my story. She helped me see what I did well, and hand-selected lessons so I could improve the weaker parts of my text. My manuscript and I are both better now, thanks to Lauren’s skillful coaching.
Thank you for a focused workshop that gave me new insight into how I can move forward with a plot that has been bothering me. Your suggestions and writing exercises helped to “jump start” my novel writing process. I feel re-committed to the work I want to do with my story, so I appreciate your insight and skill!

Kim Fahner

Lauren Carter
2021-08-25T18:27:09+00:00

Kim Fahner

Thank you for a focused workshop that gave me new insight into how I can move forward with a plot that has been bothering me. Your suggestions and writing exercises helped to “jump start” my novel writing process. I feel re-committed to the work I want to do with my story, so I appreciate your insight and skill!
Lauren is a highly encouraging and knowledgeable teacher. Every time I take one of her classes, I come away with motivation that keeps me going.

Micheline Maylor

Lauren Carter
2021-08-25T18:28:02+00:00

Micheline Maylor

Lauren is a highly encouraging and knowledgeable teacher. Every time I take one of her classes, I come away with motivation that keeps me going.
This workshop has been invaluable to me. I came out with so much more knowledge than I had going in, and I am feeling really inspired to jump into my characters. I thought Lauren was phenomenal! Thank you so much for the wonderful workshop!

Teresa Witkowskyj

Lauren Carter
2021-08-25T21:30:23+00:00

Teresa Witkowskyj

This workshop has been invaluable to me. I came out with so much more knowledge than I had going in, and I am feeling really inspired to jump into my characters. I thought Lauren was phenomenal! Thank you so much for the wonderful workshop!
An excellent workshop with lots of writing opportunity. Great value for money. Thanks, Lauren!

Diane Ferguson

Lauren Carter
2021-08-25T18:29:34+00:00

Diane Ferguson

An excellent workshop with lots of writing opportunity. Great value for money. Thanks, Lauren!
0
0
Lauren Carter

Who Am I?

what makes me such an expert?

MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Guelph. 

Certificate in Teaching and Training Adult Learners from Georgian College. 

Have taught writers throughout North America, including Mexico, and online. 

 

In-depth coursework in creativity coaching through the Creativity Coaching Association, including Beginning and Advanced Creativity Coaching 16-week courses with Eric Maisel and the 8-week course Building the Coaching Relationship with Creative Clients. 

Published in countless anthologies (including Best Canadian Fiction, selected by John Metcalf), newspapers, and magazines (National Geographic Traveler and the Globe and Mail among others), as well as most major Canadian literary journals: Prairie Fire, the Fiddlehead, Grain, The New Quarterly, and others. 

Four books traditionally published, including two novels, with agency representation. 

Nominated for the Giller Prize, the Journey Prize, and longlisted multiple times for the CBC Literary Awards in both poetry and fiction. 

Winner of the Margaret Laurence Award for Fiction (for my second novel) and past recipient of multiple arts grants, including the Manitoba Arts Council’s Major Arts Award, a $30,000 grant for artists “whose works shows exceptional quality and accomplishment.”

Blue Pencil Critique & Coaching Session

Are you stuck? If you are stymied by structure, confused about character, bewildered by the balance of show and tell, I can help! 

What you get: 

  • A read-through and in-depth critique of up to 20 pages of your work (double spaced, 12-point font)
  • I’ll point out strengths, give you questions to consider, and make suggestions for ways to strengthen, focus, or further explore your story, poems, essay, or excerpt from your memoir or novel
  • Notes and in-line editorial comments will be emailed
  • Questions and discussion of solutions and your next steps over ZOOM

Cost: $200

Lauren's blue pencil sessions have helped me to feel more confident and to progress as a writer. Her keen eye for detail and helpful insights have enabled me to bring more nuance and expression to my poetry. I have appreciated having both written notes and a ZOOM call for discussion. Lauren has a supportive, encouraging approach, and it is a joy to work with her.

woman standing alone overlooking a forest landscape

Kerry Galenzoski

Lauren Carter
2021-08-25T22:24:13+00:00

Kerry Galenzoski

woman standing alone overlooking a forest landscape
Lauren's blue pencil sessions have helped me to feel more confident and to progress as a writer. Her keen eye for detail and helpful insights have enabled me to bring more nuance and expression to my poetry. I have appreciated having both written notes and a ZOOM call for discussion. Lauren has a supportive, encouraging approach, and it is a joy to work with her.
0
0
Lauren Carter

One-on-One Coaching Call

Sometimes all you need is a single call to figure out where you’re going, talk through a sticky craft issue, set goals, re-orient your practice, or discuss a pesky block. I can also give industry and career advice about agents, publishers, grants, and figuring out what to do with that completed manuscript. 

What you get: 

  • One 60-min call over phone or ZOOM
  • We’ll explore where you’re at with your creative practice/project and where you want to be
  • We’ll identify manageable goals to get you on your way!
  • Once you purchase, I’ll be in touch to set up a time!

 

Cost: $60/call

Want to know more? I’d love to connect with you… 

Sign up to receive my semi-regular newsletter about creative process, classes and events, and life in and out of the writing room.