Julia Drake

Julia Drake.jpg

coaches are in the trenches with you. We're here for the written work, and for the emotional work, too.

I'M A COACH

What is your favorite part of the coaching process?

Getting the writer excited about their work again after hitting a roadblock.

What's your coaching style like?

Compassionate and perceptive, thorough but not nit-picky. I'm always looking for moments where I want the writer to expand – really crack open a scene or get inside a character's head. I also like to make jokes. Sometimes they land.

What genres do you love to edit?

Literary fiction, young adult fiction, memoir – anything, really, as long as there's a writer committed to telling a great story

What do you love most about editing?

Helping a writer discover hidden threads in their work. A writer's subconscious is always at work and often devastatingly brilliant!

When was the moment you felt like a real book coach?

I don't know if there's one moment, but in my work as a teacher and a writing consultant, I've come to love the phrase "that makes SO much sense." Bonus points if it's accompanied by a sigh of understanding.

Who's your ideal writer match? What are you looking for in a coaching client?

I love someone who doesn't take themselves too seriously, who isn't afraid to write funny, and who understands that one revision may be the first of many.

What do you believe the most prominent difference between an editor and a coach is?

Editors are great, but coaches are in the trenches with you. We're here for the written work, and for the emotional work, too.

What's been your greatest achievement in coaching so far?

I recently led a workshop for high school students, and they organized a final reading where they presented a piece they'd been working on. Everyone was so supportive and encouraging, and the writing was fantastic to boot.

How did you hear about Author Accelerator?

A friend and former client.


IN MY DOWNTIME...

What's your favorite word?

Archipelago

What genres do you love to read?

Literary fiction, young adult fiction, creative nonfiction, memoir

If you could fast-forward a year from now, what would your writing life look like?

I just finished a long project and I'm waiting for my creative well to fill back up. One year from now, I'd like to be in the thick of a new long project – and if I could still be in the fun generative phase, that'd be great.

What about five years from now?

Writing and teaching. It's the dream!

Who are some of your favorite authors?

  • Lorrie Moore
  • Megan Mayhew Bergman
  • Jandy Nelson
  • Sharon Creech

If you could meet any author (living or dead), who would it be and why?

Maybe Sharon Creech, who wrote Walk Two Moons and whose books I devoured as a kid. I'd bring my tattered, coverless, shredding-at-the-spine copy of Absolutely Normal Chaos for her to sign.

What are five of your favorite books?

  • Anagrams by Lorrie Moore
  • The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Díaz
  • Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
  • Charlotte's Web by E.B. White
  • Lit by Mary Karr
  • The Folded Clock by Heidi Julavits (OK, that's six – sorry for cheating)

When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

A writer/veterinarian/Oscar-winning actress. It would have been a busy life.

What does a typical day look like for you?

Working on my own writing, editing the work of others, and in the afternoons teaching creative writing classes for teenagers. There is a lot of coffee involved. Nights are for yoga, reading, cooking, and watching more TV than most literary folk like to admit to.

What are you most excited about right now?

I recently adopted a bunny named Ned, and he just jumped into my lap.