COMMUNITY - JOIN THE WRITE TOGETHER ALLIANCE
After years and years of working from home, writing on my own and generally being a bit of a hermit, I thought I'd do something about it, so I've created an interactive online writing community called the Write Together Alliance. This is run primarily through Patreon, a platform that gives you the chance to be a patron of the arts from as little as $1 a month. This will not only support my own writing - meaning you'll get my new releases a lot quicker - but it will also support the full-time interactive online community of writers that I hope the WTA will turn out to be. It will also be a place where you can learn and grow as a writer, gaining skills, knowledge, and experience, all while (hopefully!) making friends and having fun. So, please read below for more info, or head straight on over to the Patreon page to see what it's all about!
Writing is a lonely business. Let’s change that.
Writing is lonely. There’s no denying it. Whether you’re a copywriter, a novelist, a columnist or whatever else, chances are that most of the time, it’s just you and your computer. All alone. Solo. Sounds sad, doesn’t it? And, well, it kind of is. I’ve been writing in various forms for over ten years now, and the one thing that hasn’t changed is that it’s basically just me, sitting at home and writing on my own, my computer my only friend (though sometimes I have my suspicions about whether it even likes me). There are no workmates, no office banter, no cakes in the break room when it’s a colleague’s birthday, and no semi-awful mandatory office parties. For years my Christmas parties involved me drinking a bottle of wine and listening to a never-ending Spotify playlist of cheesy ‘pop anthems’ while I sat at my desk, alone. That was it. There were fewer chances of embarrassing myself, sure, but there was also something missing: other people. I was gradually becoming some kind of weird writing hermit.
Let me introduce myself. I'm Jessica Grace Coleman (or Jess or JC to my friends) and I run Coleman Editing, a proofreading/editing/ghostwriting service. I also self-publish my own novels and other books (including the Little Forest and The Downfall YA series), as well as pursuing various other literary endeavours. It's an interesting job and I love being self-employed, but I do miss working with others, which brings me to the Write Together Alliance.
When I first came across Patreon I thought it might be a good platform to help promote my novels. Then I started thinking a little more. Patreon is about finding patrons for your art, yes, but the more I look at different accounts, the more I realise what it’s actually about: community. It’s about surrounding yourself (at least digitally) with like-minded people, and being a part of something new and exciting. So, I thought, why not do both? Why not create an interactive writing community where I can pass on my skills and knowledge, and where we can all learn from each other, improving our writing and allowing us to pursue our writing dreams, whatever they may be? I can make use my own writing while also building up what I hope will be an interactive, supportive writing community where writers can connect, help each other, learn, and grow. A place where you can really feel like you're part of something, where you can have fun, and where you can really hone your craft. If it encourages you to come out of your writing cave (or office, if you're fancy), even better!
As a patron (and therefore member) of the Write Together Alliance, depending on which tier you choose you will receive the following:
Access to the Write Together Alliance Discord, where you can chat with other writers, ask for advice, and find your very own ‘writing buddy’.
Access to my patron-only posts and videos. These can be anything from articles to tutorials, information on certain aspects of writing or self-publishing, interviews with people in the industry, editing and self-publishing ‘walk-throughs’ and lots of other exclusive content.
Proofreading and editing help for your own work, as well as discounts on Coleman Editing services.
Resources, resources, resources!
My monthly flash fiction writing prompts and feedback on your work. There will be a 500-word limit on these and I will read and edit every single one, choosing my favourite each month to publish as a patron-only post or video.
An invite to ask me questions in my monthly Q&A – whether you want to know about writing, self-publishing, editing, or just random stuff. You can also suggest articles/video topics.
Fun writing-related competitions, with literary-related prizes and the opportunity to have some input into my next story or book (this could include naming a character or place, having your own name included etc.).
Free digital copies of my books.
At the highest tier, signed physical copies of my books and the opportunity to be listed on my author site as one of my top patrons.
The chance to be the Write Together Alliance Writer Of The Month. If chosen, you'll even get a shiny WTA Writer Of The Month (digital) badge to display wherever you want.
More! (When I think of more, or when you guys suggest new stuff.)
I should probably tell you a bit about me. Well, I’m in my early thirties (how that happened, I have no idea – I’m still a teenager in my head), I’m a full-time self-employed writer and editor, I live in England, and like many of my fellow countrymen and women I enjoy nothing more than a nice cup of tea and a biscuit. Or a crumpet, if I’m feeling particularly adventurous. I love animals, travelling, music, movies, and – unsurprisingly – reading. I'm a massive Buffy fan. I love cheesy musicals but I also love horror films. I'm a huge fan of random British/Irish sitcoms like Spaced, The IT Crowd, Father Ted, and Black Books. I love autumn and Halloween, though Christmas is my favourite time of year. Author-wise, I like a bit of everything: Stephen King, Jostein Gaarder, Tana French, Janet Evanovich, Charlaine Harris, Jonathan Safran Foer, Chuck Palahniuk, Tom Wolfe, Alex Garland, Nicky Hornby, Edgar Allan Poe, H.P. Lovecraft… the list goes on, and I'm always looking for recommendations!
In terms of writing, I’ve worked in many different areas. In the past I ran an online writing competition with the theme of ‘Darker Times’, producing seven anthologies of short stories. I’ve logged rushes at a TV production company, I’ve worked as a university newspaper article writer, and I ran an online music zine for years, interviewing bands and writing gig and album reviews. I’ve also worked as a copywriter for an agency, then as a freelance editor and ghostwriter, before finally starting Coleman Editing, which I’ve been running full-time for over four years now. In those four years I’ve worked on over 500 books, short stories, essays, articles and poems, with my small team of editors having worked on that same amount again. I attend a local women writers' networking group, and I’m part of an online short story writing group that releases anthologies of our work every year. I’ve released six self-published novels, one volume of short stories, and one non-fiction book on writing, with several more books in the pipeline.
I’ve gone on writing retreats in places like the beautiful Forest of Dean in England, and I’ve even flown to a tiny island in Thailand to live in a writers’ house with authors and content creators from all over the world on a writing residency that taught me a lot about my writing and myself. It also made me think about how important it is to surround yourself with other writers, whether physically or digitally, to a) help you improve your craft and b) stop you from going absolutely insane on your own. We’re not in the Overlook Hotel here, and there’s no need to let feelings of isolation ruin our writing work (or worse).
So, whether you’re an established writer, an aspiring novelist, a freelance copywriter, or just an avid reader looking for a great circle of literary-obsessed friends, I’m hoping this will be the best literary community on the net, full of advice, support, resources, and – hopefully – fun times. By becoming a patron you will be helping me run the Write Together Alliance while also helping me pursue my own writing, including creating content and resources for this group. You’ll also be keeping my tea (and coffee) supply stocked, which as writers I’m sure you'll know is very, very important. I will be grateful for whatever you can afford to keep this community going, and if you have any ideas or suggestions for extra things we can do as a group, just let me know!
My hopes are to make this a real community, and just like with actual physical communities, I believe giving back is important. So, if this Patreon starts earning more than $1000 a month, I’ll pick a literary-related charity (perhaps a children's literacy charity) and give 5% of everything I receive through Patreon to them. Charity suggestions are welcomed! If you become a patron – at any tier – you’ll be helping to make this happen. Plus, it’ll give you that warm fuzzy feeling inside, which is always nice.
I thought I'd add some testimonials from my wonderful Coleman Editing clients so you don't just have to take my word for it that I can write/edit!
“I could not have found a better editing service for my work… clear and thorough, and with an understanding of the content and a comprehensive and sympathetic eye to detail in the editing. My book now has a fine polish to it, and I feel is ready to hand on to the publishing world. Thank you Jessica.”
- Christine Yeats.
"As a debut author, and one intending to self-publish, finding an editor was essential. However, I needed more than just an editor; I also wanted someone that could work with me, garner a full understanding of my work and help me to shape it accordingly. Jessica of Coleman Editing far exceeded my expectations. I was thrilled with the finished product and will certainly be using Coleman Editing's services again."
- Tina-Marie Miller.
“What do you do if you struggle to read and write but you've always wanted to write a story? What do you do if you have a million crazy ideas but can't seem to express them in a way others can understand?
The answer is: seek the help and advice of expert editor, Jessica Coleman. As her initials 'JC' suggest, she actually can perform miracles – that is, with text. She has a professional yet friendly approach and is willing to work with you every step of the way, so if you don't know what you’re doing you can rest assured that at least someone does, and who better than Jessica?
Jessica has helped me turn my puzzle adventure story into something I can be proud of. This service works well for those who want to be published but even more so for those who want to be confident in their work, and I have Jessica to thank for that. I guess what I'm trying to say is that with Jessica's help, my book – my puzzle adventure – is solved!”
- Omar Gunnoo.
I think that’s it! If you’d like to become a patron I will love you forever and do my best to make this the best, most interactive writing community on the net. So let's get writing (together)!