Lynn Goodwin

Class Title: Independent Study Program, Session 1
Instructor: Lynn Goodwin
Class Term: September 23-October 21, 2019
We are not accepting any more enrollments for Lynn's class; the class has started.


What is keeping you from your dreams?
Do you have an idea for a story but don't know how to start?
Do you have a draft but need an editor?
Are you stuck on your summary? Cover letter? Query?
Do you want to make your story, memoir, or fiction shine and sparkle?

During this 4-week session, I'll take your writing to the next level. That means something different for everyone. I'll ask questions about your overall project and the chapters, segments, or scenes you submit. You'll start seeing new possibilities and approach your writing with renewed energy.

Stuck in your writing or productivity?


Let's find out and do something about it.

We will brainstorm, try new tactics and techniques, and move your writing forward. Whether you need help getting started, want to revitalize your writing, are seeking fresh inspiration, or are digging more deeply into familiar subjects, I'd like to be your sounding board and advisor.

Your writing will generate questions from me. As you answer my questions, you'll start seeing new possibilities. Find out what's working. Learn to spot the segments that need improvement.

Ready to find a publisher? Let's work on your cover letter or query and polish those first chapters until they sparkle. Together we'll make your work the best it can be.

Because this is Independent Study, we work at your pace. I can guide you to useful sources for submitting shorter pieces, help you research and approach agents, and help you learn about the options for self-publishing, depending on your needs.


Your Skills: You need to be able to use Microsoft Word and e-mail. Having questions about your work when you start will help.

My Skills: I've been the editor/owner of Writer Advice for fifteen years. I'm also the author of You Want Me to Do WHAT? Journaling for Caregivers (Tate Publishing). In the last week I received two contracts, one for "Hello, Lynn," which will appear in Small Miracles from the Beyond (Sterling Publishing) and one for my YA, Talent, which will be published by Eternal Press. I have extensive experience teaching, editing, writing, promoting, and coaching writers, and I love pulling them out of the funk that rises up when a manuscript bogs down.


  • Answering your questions
  • Opening your eyes
  • Helping you find your voice for a
    • Flash fiction
    • Short story
    • Personal essay
    • Novel or novella
    • Memoir
    • Academic writing

Tuition/Fees for this course

SCN members: $200. Non-SCN members: $250.

Instructor Bio

Lynn Goodwin owns Writer Advice. She's written You Want Me to Do WHAT? Journaling for Caregivers (Tate Publishing) and Talent (Eternal Press). She was short-listed for a Literary Lightbox Award and won a Bronze Medal in the Moonbeam Children's Book Awards for Talent.

Goodwin's work has appeared in Voices of Caregivers; Hip Mama; Small Press Review; Dramatics Magazine; The Sun; Inspire Me Today; Caregiver Village; Good, Purple and elsewhere. She is a reviewer and teacher at Story Circle Network, and she is a manuscript coach here at Writer Advice. Her memoir about getting married for the first time at 62 has been picked up by Koehler Press and will be out in early 2018, but she always has time to write guest blog posts and answer questions. Visit her website and her blog.

Social Media:

Praise for Lynn's Classes

  • Lynn Goodwin is positive and helpful. Very good feedback. —Dawn B., Bulverde TX

  • Lynn Goodwin continues to encourage me to dig deeper and expand my characters' backgrounds. I am still working on that. Her suggestions have helped me decide what is useful and what needs to be questioned. She also asks questions that challenge me to think beyond the text as written. I will continue to welcome Lynn's expertise in future sessions. —Marjorie S., Peoria AZ

  • Lynn Goodwin really helped me improve my stories. Her comments let me know where and why I was off track and where I was getting it right. The balance of praise and critique helped guide me with pleasant clarity. She even recommended some exemplary writing in the area of my weakness. I will be taking independent study from Lynn again. —Mary S., Irvine CA

  • Working with Lynn Goodwin is a complete joy. She is an encouraging and helpful facilitator of any genre of writing and her editing skills are excellent.I am writing a chapbook of flash fiction for a specific contest and Lynn helped me get my ms in tip top shape. Her suggestions were spot on and she was in my corner all the way. She is very accessible via email and responded to all my questions and comments immediately. I would highly recommend anyone looking to refine, polish, or begin a new writing project to work with Lynn. I know in the future I will take her Independent Study again with other writing projects. —Renee C., Temecula CA

  • My writing was sensitive and personal, and in many ways, I simply needed a witness; Lynn Goodwin provided that presence with grace along with many professional insights. It's great to work with someone who has published, is publishing again, and knows the ropes. —Denise J., Bay St. Louis MS

  • I'm delighted to say that I think more like a writer now than before I had Lynn Goodwin's help. I have more of a sense of what to include and what to exclude. Her guidance has given me a chance to stretch beyond what I never thought possible and in so doing has raised my confidence level as well. —Marge S., Peoria AZ

  • Lynn Goodwin is a wonderful source of insight and encouragement! —Carla B., Connersville IN

  • I've worked with Lynn Goodwin during several independent study sessions. She has always helped me improve my writing. She is encouraging, and she asks pertinent questions to make me think. I would recommend her classes for anyone working on a specific project. —Betsy K., Granite City IL

  • Lynn Goodwin knows how to offer suggestions to make your writing say what you want it to say. She teaches you to delve deeply into your character's motives so you write more purposely. Taking her course was well worth the time and money. —Susan H., College Station TX

  • Lynn Goodwin is a wonderful writing instructor who offers a positive approach. She has great insight, helpful writing suggestions, and the understanding and creativity to help make writing material better. I'd take her Independent Course again in a heartbeat. —Judy W., Studio City CA

  • Lynn Goodwin's positive encouragement and enthusiasm pushes me to write for her. Thank you Lynn! —Anne W., West Chester PA

  • Lynn Goodwin was an excellent instructor for the independent study course. Her comments and questions were precise and helpful. She was very encouraging while giving suggestions for changes. —Betsy K., Granite City, IL

  • Lynn Goodwin's questions helped me find issues I needed to work on and think about, to go deeper into the subject. She helped me see my writing from a reader's point of view, opening up new perspective on what I had taken for granted. I was hoping for specific editorial help for my book, and I got that. Very pleased with this course and with my progress under Lynn's guidance! Her questions were very insightful, and called attention to the things I needed to think about and work on. I would definitely recommend this course and this instructor! Betsy K., Granite City, IL

  • Lynn Goodwin has a very good way of asking questions. Wonderful class. —Vanessa M., Klosters, Switerzerland

  • Lynn Goodwin is an encouraging and effective mentor. Her comments challenged me to improve my writing and go deeper into each scene. Anyone working on an ongoing manuscript would benefit from her guidance. —Renee C., Hicksville NY

  • My expectations were 1) to start writing anything, 2) to focus more onto one subject, and 3) to develop a theme and storyline. They are sequential for the most part. I got started, and developed some focus, but the potential storylines are still in glamourous thought impeded by many years of daily chores and procrastination. Lynn Goodwin was helpful in getting through some of that...She is great at starting with you where you are at and proceeding forward. —Susan P., Grangeville ID

  • Lynn Goodwin is great at giving what is needed! ...very accessible, responsive and supportive... suggests readings that are appropriate to your needs. I keep coming back to work with Lynn because she keeps me going on my project! [she] has been a wonderful inspiration. — Diane P., Pikesville MD

  • Lynn Goodwin is the best writing instructor I have ever had. She has guided me through this journey with ease. —Anthony F., Danville CA

  • Lynn Goodwin has been very supportive and I feel as if my writing is improving significantly with her help and encouragement... I have been enjoying working with Lynn tremendously... I feel as if she has become my Muse :) — Diane P., Pikesville MD

  • Lynn Goodwin has a unique gift, talent? skill? of digging deep and hitting the heart of the story. She provokes incredibly deep and personal connection and thought to the material. I think it must be a difficult task to connect with each of her students since we come from such different backgrounds and experiences, but Lynn is able to cut through all the surrounding "stuff" and reach out to and touch the writer in me! It was a wonderfully supportive and encouraging environment, and a "safe" place to explore who we are as women,daughters, sisters, friends, wives—humans interacting, and most importantly who we are as writers with Lynn's sharp eye and caring guidance... I will definitely sign up for the next session, but could it be a wee bit longer? —Janice S., Houston TX

  • Through the first and second session [with Lynn Goodwin] ... I did finally "get" what showing vs telling meant ... I feel that was a tremendous step! Lynn is very supportive and involved and responsive. She did keep me moving on my work. —Diane P., Pikesville MD

  • If you are motivated and serious about your writing, Lynn Goodwin just may be a perfect match for you. She was always available if I had questions, she made great suggestions and her feedback was always given in such a way that I never felt embarrassed about my writing. She understood me and my needs and was very responsive. She returned my writing with her suggestions quickly, which helped me keep on writing. I had an amazing experience with her and will be taking as many classes with her as I can. —Debra R., Media PA

  • For someone who is unsure what the future holds in terms of writing capabilities, Lynn Goodwin's Independent Study was an excellent way to begin the exploration. —Mike Q., Walnut Creek CA

  • I really felt I grew in my understanding of how to edit and possibly get an article published. Lynn Goodwin's encouragement was amazing and very uplifting. It made me want to continue to strive to become a better writer. —Mary Anne D., Riverhead NY

  • Lynn Goodwin inspires you to confront the creative process at the level you need to address. She is warm, encouraging, and specific in her comments to each writer's needs. My hands are cramping from her input to me, and her matra, "Keep writing. Just keep writing," is helping me release all kinds of wonderful things I had no idea would so freely emerge for me. —Linda S., Cedar City UT

  • This is the second class I've taken with Lynn Goodwin and again she gave so much of her time to each writer, always responded quickly, and offered encouraging and thoughtful comments that made me want to keep writing. She really makes the online classes work and I will take another class from her any time she offers one. —Margaret S., Austin TX

  • This is the best online writing course I have taken. Lynn Goodwin was gentle and generous with her comments. I came away having a strong sense of what my strengths are and where I can take new direction. —Carol Z., St. Louis MO

  • Great Class. Terrific feedback. Interesting Group exchanges/writers added to the benefits of Lynn Goodwin's class. —Jane L., Oakland CA

  • Absolutely splendid! Lynn Goodwin's response was timely, thorough, and specific. —Carol Z., St. Louis MO

  • Lynn Goodwin was great. Prompt, encouraging. —Jane L., Oakland CA

  • Lynn Goodwin's comments were extremely encouraging. —Maria A., San Gabriel CA