I offer writing coaching to writers working on memoirs, nonfiction book proposals, MFA program applications, and personal essays.

My students and writing coaching clients publish books with small and large publishing houses and essays in national outlets, such as the New York Times and the Washington Post. (See examples below)

Coaching meetings are held online via GoToMeeting. My philosophy is to meet the writer at the level they're at and help them reach their goals by teaching discrete skills and giving them honest and usable feedback. My strengths are structural and developmental editing; intuiting a narrative's emotional preoccupation; and reading at the speed of light. My rate is 120 dollars an hour. If you'd like to set up a session, email me at theonestorprods@gmail.com.

Content of coaching sessions is held in confidence. Testimonials and names below  shared with permission of writers.

Selected nonfiction titles from former students and clients:

New York Times Modern Love columns by former students and clients:

Tim Elhajj’s “As a Father I Was Hardly a Perfect Fit.”
Margot Page’s “Labels of Married Life, in a New Light.“
Judith Gille’s “The Messy-Kitchen, Parking-Spot War.”
Natalie Appleton’s “A World Away, a Wish Answered.”
Kristine Lloyd’s “In the New Year, More Cuddling.”
Susan Forray’s “How I fell for an ‘I’m the man’ Man.”

Forthcoming nonfiction from former students & clients:

 

Untitled memoir from Noe Alvarez forthcoming from Catapult (2020)

Flying Free by Cecilia Aragon forthcoming from Blackstone Publishing(2020).

Washington Post essays by former students:

Testimonials by former students:

Cecilia Aragon

I’d been daydreaming about writing a memoir for nearly 20 years, but it was Theo’s inspired teaching that finally showed me the shape the memoir needed to take. Her patient and insightful coaching enabled me to hone my draft into publishable form. More than anything else, I appreciated her willingness to work with me […] Read More

Debbie Reber

Reaching out to Theo when I was in the initial stages of figuring out a voice and direction for my most recent book was the best decision I could have made. She brought to our relationship (and my project) her gift of seeing the bigger story, understanding the potential of my vision and voice, […] Read More

Rosy Crumpton

Theo was the very first person outside of my sisters to read my manuscript. I wanted a professional and honest critique of my work from someone who I could trust. After reading her work and doing my research, I found Theo to be the perfect fit. My session with Theo was beyond my expectations. […] Read More

Sarah Townsend

I contacted Theo for support in completing a marketing plan for my first book (initiated during her memoir course!) As a writing coach, she asked me to consider what I wanted from the experience of publication; what was my personal mission statement? Such is the wisdom of a woman who writes and teaches about […] Read More

Judith Sara Gelt

I contacted Theo ten years into writing my memoir while I was struggling with structure. She did a “turbo” read and gained knowledge of the entire plot. After our Skype-like discussions, which were as pleasant as they were productive, she recommended I cut the first 120 pages! It was her explanation—her reasoning about why […] Read More

Amy Koko

For years I wanted to write a memoir about my divorce but never could focus on my goal. After a year with Theo I had a completed manuscript and a well written proposal that sold my book for publication. She guided me all the way. Could not have done it without her! Author, There’s […] Read More

Candace Walsh

I turned to Theo in the latter stage of revising my memoir, at a point when I needed a frank assessment from someone who knew neither me nor the story I was trying to write. She delivered in spades. Her questions about the story arc and her suggestions with regard to craft allowed me […] Read More

Janet Buttenwieser

Janet Buttenwieser

I found that, like any good coach, Theo is there for you. She is totally in your corner. What that means is that she is pushing and prodding you, asking you the tough questions about your writing and helping you reach deep, stretch, and grow. She will give you direct, clear feedback that you […] Read More

Paul Kuehnert

Paul Kuehnert

Theo is a gifted teacher. She is so incisive and helpful in steering me in the right direction that I can’t say enough good things about her. I highly recommend!

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shigeko

Shigeko Ito

Theo’s enthusiasm, professionalism, and sincerity helped take my writing to the next level. She is so wonderfully kind and caring, with an eye for editing. The connection I built with Theo gave me the ability to write more vulnerably, and ultimately more engagingly. I highly recommend working with Theo, especially as a memoir writer.

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Raz Tal

Raz Tal

During our coaching sessions, Theo tended to each of our submissions with feedback that ranged from pacing to diction, to voice, all of it given in a way that acknowledged our strengths and encouraged us to dive into the next revision. Always positive and supportive, she did not hesitate to identify unclear passages and […] Read More

Sophia Kouidou-Giles

Sophia Kouidou-Giles

I took a self-styled “sabbatical” from my psychotherapy practice so I could work on my memoir. But after writing about 150k words I was at an impasse about how to make it all fit together. Around then, I read Writing is My Drink, which I loved. I got the idea to contact Theo for […] Read More

Jennifer Noel

Jennifer Noel

Theo is a dream to work with. She’s a fast reader and that meant a quick turnaround when I sent pages to her for critique. Theo’s got a keen eye for detail and voice on the page. And she has a warm way of conveying how I might make a piece better, more readable, […] Read More

Jason Poole

Jason Poole

Not only does Theo bring strong academic credentials and experience as a published writer to her role as writing coach, perhaps most importantly, she brings her generous humanity. Theo offers original insights and practical suggestions for your writing which cohere with your own vision. As a skilled and experienced coach, Theo guides you towards […] Read More

Kit Cudahy

Kit Cudahy

Theo Nestor is my go-to manuscript coach. With her guidance and critique, I crafted a personal essay and writing sample that resulted in my acceptance to Columbia University’s MFA program in creative nonfiction. Around the same time, I came to her with an essay I had written about a traumatic event just after the […] Read More

Phoenix Glass

Theo Nestor changed my life. Taking her Certificate in Memoir class at UW in 2015-1016—blew the top of my head off. I can’t describe it any other way. It was as if Theo opened a trapdoor to my childhood and everything that came after. She validated all the life experiences I chose to write […] Read More

Reni Roxas

Reni Roxas

Just as she is a gifted teacher, Theo Nestor is a gifted coach. Her feedback is specific, concrete, and honest. She has deep knowledge of the publishing world. She is strategic, and she is wise. She is funny. She inspires. Hire her. Children’s book publisher & editor

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Page Ulrey

Page Ulrey

Theo is a gifted teacher. She is so incisive and helpful in steering me in the right direction that I can’t say enough good things about her. I highly recommend!

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