Incredible new seminar! “Red Pen for Rent was founded by Senior Editor Alissa McGowan. It began as a one-woman operation that only offered editorial services. But as Alissa began to work with clients and educate herself about the rapidly evolving publishing landscape, she began to notice a gap in the services currently available to authors who are navigating the complicated artisanal publishing journey. The democratization of the publishing industry has opened up an exciting new world of opportunity for authors.” (via RedPenforRent)  

They say that there’s a book in everyone. Here’s some advice on how to birth yours… Watch!

Hey Sacred Bombshell,

You have an idea for a fiction or non-fiction book and you don’t know what to do next? Maybe you’re writing the book and feeling stuck or you’re finished and um, now what? You’re trying to decide whether to go with self-publishing or vanity press or Big 6 publisher?

I get all of your letters inquiring about writing a book SO TONIGHT Alissa McGowan, Senior Editor of Red Pen for Rent, joins me for a free comprehensive seminar to talk about the future of publishing , how writers can be empowered, moving past fear and procrastination, and a blueprint of how you can move forward with your book.

The incredible Alissa was the editor of my new book “The Sacred Bombshell Handbook of Self-Love.” I was just nominated for an African American Literary Award, Best Self-Help Book, and this I know for sure, having an incredible editor like Alissa on my team helped make this possible for me. I never want to write another book without her. (And check out that gorgeous Sacred Bombshell va-va-va-editor photo of Alissa above!)

If you can’t hear the track above, listen to the workshop here.


My first book “Dare” is a novel about a sociologist trying to find love that was published by Simon and Schuster in December 2007/January 2008, so this new personal development book was a very different journey.

Alissa and I share our knowledge with you on how to make your publishing dreams happen. Consider this free seminar to be our gift to celebrate the Literary Award nomination. Whoo hoo!

Love, Coach Abiola

editor advice

Click to go to Red Pen for Rent.

P.S. Bonus question. My friend Gerard Spinks also asked:  “Ms. McGowan feel that self published authors should always use an editor?  Should the editor do more than just grammatical editing?”

Alissa answered:

Hi Gerard! Thanks for watching!

The short answer is that I do think that all writers need editors. Our brains see what we know we meant to write, regardless of whether or not that’s what ends up on the page, which makes editing your own work virtually impossible. Not only that, but we are too close to our own work, to the point that, for example, we can’t tell when an attachment to a beautiful turn of phrase is actually weakening the story.

The editor’s job is to be a liaison between writer and reader, to ensure that your story or message or idea is being transmitted clearly and effectively to the audience in a way that is also authentically you.

That being said, yes, I also generally think the editor should do more than grammatical editing. Grammatical concerns are the realm of proofreading, and +Red Pen for Rent doesn’t provide that service to works that have not been previously edited by someone on our team.

For a much longer answer, check out the articles Why You Need an Editor, What Exactly Does an Editor Do?, and How to Find the Right Editor for You on our blog (, all the way at the bottom). 



  • If you can’t see the video above, watch it on YouTube here.
  • Listen on Soundcloud here.
  • Read more about Red Pen for Rent and Alissa here.
  • Read more about my new book here.