When I say book coaches are like snowflakes, I do it with a healthy apprehension—the words “special snowflake” have taken on a negative connotation in certain circles. When I say it, I mean snowflake as something intricate and lovely: each coach is unique in a way that deserves admiration. Book coaches have their own interests, foibles, and individual histories that they are excited to share with each client.
As a coach, especially as a newcomer, it becomes all too easy to worry that our differences are a weakness.
Hell, when I built the business plan for my book coaching, I would scribble elaborate mental lists of all the reasons I wasn’t quite good enough to coach. It felt a little like I was drowning in my insecurities. They’re still in the back of my head today, albeit fainter and less paralyzing.
Not talented enough!
Too niche! (Too queer?)
New to the industry!
Imposter syndrome can be a real b*tch.
A intelligent, kind, and kickass woman (her name’s Sarah Lacy, and you can find her here) turned to me and said, “Everything that makes you different is a strength.” I sat up and realized that the ocean I was flailing in was actually just a bucket of rainwater I had stuck my own head into. When things get scary, sometimes I still stick my head in the bucket because hiding myself, making myself smaller and quieter and stiller feels safer than interacting with the big ol’ world. But now I know I can take the bucket off. Like most things in life, it’s a mental hurdle that you’ll need to grapple with time and time again.
If you are a coach, or if I have coached you, then you know that in stories we are always asking,
“Why does this matter? How does your protagonist make meaning out of what’s happening around them?”
You can ask yourself the same question--how am I making meaning of what’s happening around me? Sometimes all it takes is a little reframing:
As a young coach, I have fresh perspectives and my whole life ahead of me to learn.
I know I’m talented because I’m a certified book coach, I’ve guest taught at the University of Oregon, I run a violence prevention program through the nonprofit I co-founded, and I make beautiful artwork that anyone would be lucky to have on their wall.
My niche is my strength! I know who I want to serve AND who I don’t want to serve.
My personal writing experience gives me excellent insight into what my clients struggle with, internally and externally.
I’m bringing all of my skills and talents to this industry, which is lucky to have my expertise.
Our differences strengthen us! More book coaches mean that writers and coaches can be better matched together. Each of us is unique, complex snowflake, and that’s exactly how it should be.
For coaches, your dream writer is out there somewhere. And for writers, there’s more opportunity than ever to find your dream coach. Here’s a great place to start:
And if you are interested in becoming an author accelerator certified book coach, shoot me an email, subject line, “Snowflake.” We can chat about the process, and I’ve got an extra special referral link if you're interested.