As an executive coach, I help professionals from a variety of industries and backgrounds to think more clearly about their goals, strategies and action steps. I pose powerful, open-ended questions that my clients might not think to ask themselves because of their proximity to their own situations.
My other professional hat, however, is that of independent author. I’ve published three books to date on Kindle and Nook, and have another novel coming out later this year. My manuscript writing builds on more than 20 years of professional journalism and freelance editorial work. I’ve learned how to flesh out an idea for a book, strategize my approach to getting it done, and execute the process to completion, uploading and promotion.
I’m excited about the opportunity to bridge these two professional disciplines—coaching and writing—together by coaching indie authors who need help seeing their ideas become finished realities. That is why I’m expanding my executive coaching clientele to include fellow indie authors looking to get to the next level in their writing and cement a sustainable, lifelong career or revenue stream.
As your executive coach, I would pose these types of questions to you during our bi-monthly telephone sessions:
 Story Development
What ideas or concepts are gripping you the most right now? How are you fleshing out these thoughts?
Who are the key characters in your story, and what dimensions or complexities are you developing for them?
How do you plan to structure the story? What key events happen 25 percent of the way into the manuscript? Fifty percent? Seventy-five percent? What key resolution do you have in mind for the end of the book?

Writing and Editing Process
What is a realistic goal for words written per day or week?
When are the best times of day for you to write, and how do you know this?
What hindrances do you or might you face to your writing time?
How long can you write before you need a mental break, and what helps you identify this dynamic?
How many drafts do you envision before you determine that the book is “finished?” Who will help you with proofreading and editing? How much are you hypothetically willing and able to spend on such services?
 Publication and Promotion
What experience do you already have with self-publishing platforms, and what pros and cons have you identified?
What is your approach to cover art? What kind of investment are you willing to make? How will you secure an artist?
What kind of “buzz” can you create about your book before it is uploaded? How are you already leveraging social media such as Twitter and Facebook to create this buzz, and what else can you do in this arena?
From a promotion standpoint, what happens the day your book goes “live?” What happens during the week that follows and the first month? Six months later, who will be reading your book and why? How will you continue to sustain a buzz (about your book!)?
 This limited list of potential coaching questions might have already stimulated some of your critical thinking about your approach to your book. I learned some things just by writing this blog entry!
I would be delighted to demonstrate the impact of coaching with you first-hand. Please stay tuned for more blog entries on this topic, and contact me at john@johnmichaeldemarco.com if you’d like to set up a complimentary 45-minute telephone coaching session. Thanks for reading!
 
 
 

John M. DeMarco is a writer, strategist, and executive coach based in Nashville, Tennessee.