Award-winning Writer & Book Producer
Storytelling for a Purpose
Award-winning Writer & Book Producer
Storytelling for a Purpose
Dr. Bob Hamilton
I’m Sally Collings, and I help people write books.
I do that through my work as a writer and book producer.
I’ve written eight books under my own name and ghostwritten a half-dozen more in the last decade or so for publishers including St Martin’s Press, Simon & Schuster, and Chronicle Books. Before writing full-time, I spent several years as editorial director with leading UK book packager Amber Books, creating highly illustrated books for the international market; before that I was a senior editor with HarperCollins Australia, and prior to that I was executive editor with Websters Multimedia in London. These days, I live in the San Francisco Bay Area with my husband, two children, and one calico cat. Apart from my work, trail running is what gives me energy and joy.
But my personal details don’t matter so much here.
What matters is that I’m very good at what I do.
And what I do is write stories that change hearts.
I’m an artist.
There, I said it.
You know what? You are too.
You are the creator of your life, your memories, and your stories. The very process of taking an idea or a memory or a random sequence of events and finding a thread to tie it all together, that’s art. And that’s what we will do together. The process of making art can be boisterous and absurd and at times frustrating, but do it right and it will always have an impact.
I choose to work with people like you, people who can collaborate creatively and openly. People who want to make a positive impact on the world. And I think they—you—choose me for the same reasons.
Five key intentions provide the bedrock for my work as writer and book producer:
- I believe that telling a great story starts with listening.
- I choose to pursue the truth at the deepest level, in whatever form it takes.
- I aim to create books of beauty, in both words and form.
- I choose to work on projects that excite and inspire me, so that I bring the best “me” to the table every time.
- I choose to work on projects that are meaningful to me, having a positive impact on the world.
Work With Sally
Choose me to help write or produce your story and I’ll deliver 200 pages so good, readers will forego sleep rather than stop reading.
That’s what your readers get.
What you get is much more valuable.
Imagine if people would sit and listen to you tell your story, for between 5 and 10 hours. That’s a long time, right? Common wisdom is that a 90-second video stretches most people’s attention. But with a book, readers will willingly stay with your story for hours on end, often over a period of a week or more. Imagine just how deeply your story will be rooted in their hearts and minds. And if they like it enough, your readers will lend it to their friends, or gift it, or recommend it.
This is the power your book will have to communicate your values to the world.
Like most everything else I do, I aim for simplicity in my offering. I provide five kinds of services.
Collaborative writing. My passion is for writing stories with a purpose: a social entrepreneur’s memoir, the book describing a charity’s founding, member stories for a non-profit. No book is too small: I delight in conveying your message concisely yet powerfully for maximum impact.
Book proposals. I excel at writing pitch packages for submission to literary agents and publishers. I get a kick out of crafting a blend of creative development and market analysis, distilling it into an attention-grabbing package. For self-publishing authors, I create book “blueprints” that clearly express their concept, their audience, and their path to market.
NEW! Book strategy sessions. I give you a direct line into my brain, tapping into my decades of writing and publishing expertise to help you plan out the book you want to write. Through a combination of questionnaires, meetings (phone or face to face), customized resources, and a detailed strategy report, I will help you figure out not only what your vision is, but what form your story should take, how you will reach your readers, and what publishing path is right for you. I can tell you these sessions have led to some real and concrete breakthroughs, enabling authors to create a book that fills them with excitement and confidence. It’s a total blast for me, too.
Executive producer. I will be your project manager, freelancer wrangler, and wave-smoother for your self-published book. I’ll work with you to set up schedules and timelines (as well as expectations!), then tee up all the freelancers and contractors you need, checking their work and making sure the wheels run smoothly. This service is specially designed for people who are looking to create a top-quality book while saving themselves the huge amount of time and energy that would be required to do it all themselves.
Coach/consultant. If you are confident with handling the writing work yourself, call on me as your chief editor/advisor/cheerleader. I can offer whatever level of input you need, from developing your book concept to planning out your best path to publication.
Right around now, you probably want to know what this will cost you.
Every client, every project is different, so I don’t set a fixed price for writing or producing a book or book proposal. Instead, let me show you some client scenarios—not only what the price tag is, but what value I deliver.
- A former military commander’s leadership book: after playing with the idea of writing a book for a year or more, he signed up for my book strategy sessions. The fee of $1200 was more than worthwhile for the outcome: he is now in discussions with a prestigious business book publisher with a view to signing a contract.
- A prominent surgeon’s book: he considered taking a sabbatical to write it, but the cost in terms of lost income would have been over $30,000 per month, not to mention the professional cost of stepping away from his practice for many months. He paid me $12,000 per month to work with him and has now fulfilled his long-held dream of authoring a book.
- A social entrepreneur’s memoir: in the 2 years since publication, 15,000 copies have been sold. Or to put it another way, 15,000 people and their friends and family are now fully invested in the mission of her organization, emotionally and financially. My fee was $95,000—just over $6 spend per new supporter. That per-supporter figure continually decreases the more people read her book.
- A business coach’s motivational story: 10 corporate clients signed up to work with him after reading his book, generating revenue of $200,000. That’s over a 100 percent return on my $98,000 fee for revising his manuscript and producing the printed book. And that’s just a start: the book keeps on delivering new clients, year after year.
Every client is different, every book is unique, so contact me using the form below to find out more about packages and pricing.
Every great story starts with a conversation.
Let me leave you with one last thought.
Cause-driven organizations and the people behind them face the difficult task of telling stories that hit an emotional chord, but don’t teeter into guilt for their audience. Together we can write a book that may be heart-wrenching and even uncomfortable at times, and yet still uplifting. The kind of book that stirs people to action. Because sometimes one person’s story can help give a voice to millions.
If you are ready to start telling your story, let’s have that conversation soon.