The Creative’s Blog

Meet the editor: Natasha Hanova

I never thought of myself as a coach. The first time a friend suggested that I’d make a good
coach, I brushed them off. Told them that’s outside of my area of comfort and I wouldn’t
even know where to begin. To which they told me I already coach people. All the time.
Which, looking back, yeah, I was totally coaching but it felt more like having conversations
with other writers about something I love.

For decades, I’ve attended writers’ conferences, taught a few writing classes, read craft
books and so much fiction. My experiences as a developmental editor, line editor, query &
synopsis editor, as well as an authenticity reader, have helped me sharpen my skills as a
writer. I’m also intimately familiar with staring at a blank page and feeling excited about the
potential of what it can become, which is soon followed by existential dread about my
choices in life.

I’ve experienced a wild variety of challenges in my writing career. I’ve been there right along
with my critique partners, and other writers, who’ve faced things that can dim a writer’s
light. These are moments where writers feel frustrated with their manuscript. They’re
unsure where the story should start, why the middle isn’t working or how the end got so
derailed. Sometimes writers misplace their joy of writing or feel unmotivated or
discouraged because writing is hard. Or perhaps they don’t have a support network. They
feel discouraged or have low confidence in their ability or aren’t sure what they’re doing or
should be doing or what to do next.

These can also be moments when life throws so many plot twists at a writer that it
extinguishes their creative spirit. Sometimes writers get so lost, they’re ready to give up.
But something keeps them holding on to the dream. The obstacles are endless and varied,
but not insurmountable.

I coach writers because I love witnessing that moment when a writer’s face lights up
when an idea or concept hits just right. I love being able to help creatives rekindle their
joy and gain confidence in their skills and abilities.
It makes me so happy when I’m able
to support writers in re-discovering their motivation to be creative.

I want to guide writers through plot holes or weak characters that stunt progress or in
figuring out what happens next in the scene, chapter, manuscript, their career. I enjoy
asking questions that can help writers find the heart of their story, deepen their POV, or
strengthen their character’s GMC (goal, motivation and conflict).

Moments like these lead to a writer’s face lighting up with epiphany and purpose. Knowing
that I help creatives or supported them in ways that others have helped and supported me
is an amazing feeling. I coach writers because I’ve been in that dark place, looking for a
light to help me find my way back. I want to be that light for others.

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