Frequent Asked Questions
What do you do? How do you help authors?
You’re on the wrong page. Do not pass go. Do not collect $100. Go directly to this page about what we do. Read that info before you do anything else.
I’d love to meet with you for coffee/lunch/dinner.
As much as I love people, meeting people, and hearing your stories, my time is narrowly allocated. In my romantic fantasies we can languish over coffee and compare your work to Wilde, Dickens, Austen. In reality, I am working very hard behind the scenes to help my writers finish and publish well. The only way to meet with me is to schedule a time in advance through my online scheduler, and for us to talk via phone if you’re in the US, or Skype if you’re international.
How much does a consultation cost?
A consultation with me is absolutely free. Why? I am interested in knowing who you are, where you’d like to go, and if I am the right fit to help you get there. I want to know about your long-term goals, and how your unique brain works. From there, I will determine if we’re the right fit to work together, or I will point you in the direction of some resources I believe will be helpful to you.
How many people do you invite to work with you?
I invite a small portion of the people I talk to work with me. If you’re committed to your writing and publishing dream and ready to work for it, if you’re ready to be the very best, most confident writer you can be, and if you’re ready to stop spinning your wheels and commit to yourself and real results, then you’re in a good place to book a call.
If you’re shopping around, want to talk about the weather or your WIP just for giggles, may I suggest one of my upcoming events, the Writing Gym podcast where I interview top-level publishing industry professionals, or subscribing to my YouTube channel for up-to-the minute writing tips.
How much does it cost to work with you?
Imagine you’re hungry. You tell me you want some food. So I take you to the grocery store, and as we’re entering you ask “How much is this going to cost?”
I can’t really give you an answer, can I? How long have you been hungry? Are you literally starving or merely peckish? Do you have dietary restrictions?
Beyond that, what are you going to buy: potatoes? Twinkies? Steak?
Those will all solve your hunger problem, but they all have different price points. In the same way, until I understand exactly what your problem is, and if, and how I can help you, telling you my prices would be like reading you the grocery flyer.
I don’t like to read the grocery flyer out loud; do you like to hear it? (Kind of a waste of both our time, isn’t it?)
More importantly, I believe all people deserve to be treated like individuals. I can say “Take this class for $19.99” but I can guarantee you that class won’t solve your problem. In the Writing Gym, we’re all about individualized solutions. It’s just one part of why we get the success rates we do. Oh yeah, and why people love the community so much.
So, if you’re up for being treated like a person, to having a solution that addresses who you are, where you want to go, and the very best strategy for YOU to get there, we’re a fit.
If you want to keep taking cheap classes, and not solve your problems so you can get published and live the author lifestyle, by all means, go somewhere else.
Can I just call you tomorrow? AKA Why don’t you have a phone number on your website?
As much as I love people, meeting people, and hearing your stories, my time is narrowly allocated. In my romantic fantasies we can languish over coffee and compare your work to Wilde, Dickens, Austen. In reality, I am working very hard behind the scenes to help my writers finish and publish well.
The only way to meet with me is to schedule a time in advance through my online scheduler, and for us to talk via phone if you’re in the US, or Skype if you’re international.
(That felt like deja vu all over again.)
When we do talk, you will have my full attention. I will be focused 100% on you because YOU will be the only thing on my calendar. My phone won’t be ringing in the background. My email will be off.
You will have 100% of my attention so we can talk about YOU and your author dream. Wouldn’t you rather have my full attention than my full accessibility?
Can I send you my pages and get your feedback?
Why not? you say.
Publishing is complicated. You may think that its about your pages–and it is. Still only in part. We’re all about real solutions here at the Writing Gym. Your pages are important–so is where you are, where you want to go, where you’ve been, your publishing dream.
In other words, you, dear writer, are an important part of the process. We get amazing results and get so many people published because of this approach. We don’t do it any other way.
That said, if you’re preparing for a pitch session with a literary agent, and you want an evaluation on whether your first 5 pages are ready to hand over to an agent, you can schedule that here.
Otherwise, you should book a call.
How can I meet you in person?
I’m so glad you asked. I speak about twice a month somewhere in the world. I’d love to meet you at one of my events. Please do stop by and say hello.
Here’s a photo of Ann saying hello at my table at an event. She bought me some Secret Sauce towels shed found that made her think of why she loved Storytelling for Pantsers: How to Write and Revise your Novel without an Outline so much. Isn’t that sweet?
If you’d like for me to speak to your group or organization, I’d love to. Please note, however, that I do very few charity speeches (unpaid for a good cause) per year, and I do require travel, room and board to be covered.
To have me speak to your organization, learn more about topics and logistics here.
How many people have published with you? What’s your success rate? Give me some proof that you’re as amazing as you say you are.
I find that when skeptics do 20 minutes of homework, they can’t wait to get on the phone with me–no longer to argue or look for validation, but because my results speak for themselves: if you’ll take the time to listen. So stalk me, read everything on my webpage, watch my videos, read my blogs, pore over the hundreds of testimonials from successful authors.
If you do your homework, and come to a call prepared, I’ll be happy to answer any remaining questions you have.
Please don’t ask me to put on a dog and pony show for you, when my results are so easily accessible. I know you’re special, but I want to talk about how special your writing future is, not what I’ve done for others in the past.
Lastly, if you want the absolute REAL DEAL on what’s happening TODAY (and yesterday and the day before) for my authors, join the facebook group Write to PUBLISH, and then actually go to the group and read the posts. In 5 minutes, you’ll see dozens of authors getting results–in their own words, in their own posts.
What is the Writing Gym?
The Writing Gym is the name of the program we use to help authors write, publish and sell books–in short to live the author lifestyle. If you’re not sure what that means, poke around the site a bit more.
Why is it called Date With the Muse?
Here’s a video I created to answer just that question.
Wait. That last video isn’t perfect.
Indeed. Perfection is impossible. Those who seek it seek futility. Embracing our imperfection while seeking a high standard is an important part of the work we do at Date With the Muse. We help writers come into right relationship with the inner critic; giving up the quest for perfection and embracing the quest for excellence is an important part of that work.
I’ve gotten emails telling me my videos are too professional, or not professional enough–or even that seeing the tag in my clothing is distracting. There will always be critics, and variations in standards. Yes, our website is important, as are our videos. But you know what’s more important? High standards for client success. I spend my days networking, advocating on their behalf, and helping them to become their very best writer–not making my website seem like I do these things–but actually doing them.
Besides, I have a fondness in my heart for the person who made this video, and for the cute footage of my dog, Mia.
Are you the muse?
Of course not, silly. I just coordinate dates with him/her/it through the use of neuroscientific principles.
What is the Writing Gym Podcast?
The Writing Gym podcast is a writer’s go-to source for quality information about how to finish, publish, and market writing in all genres. Not only does it give you the implementable steps you need, it’s fun. No snorefest here. You’ll laugh at the Quirk O’ the week and enjoy hard-hitting advice from top agents, best-selling authors, and publishers.
It is available through iTunes, Stitcher, iHeart Radio, Spotify, and by asking your Alexa device to play the Writing Gym podcast.