Most aspiring authors have a knack for story: avid readers who captivate friends in conversation, they harbor a tale they’ve waited a lifetime to tell. 

But they’ve been tricked into thinking writing a book is both easier, and harder, than it really is.
On one hand, we use language to do everything from send texts to jot grocery lists. Who hasn’t penned a school paper or Instagram post? Unlike a sculptor’s tools to cast in bronze, most of us feel an intimacy with words. Yet even gifted storytellers find themselves at a loss when faced with challenges such as limiting point of view, or controlling past-perfect tenses in flashback scenes.

On the other, talented writers often get seduced into thinking they must master “secret rules,” and lose heart when their process looks nothing like Hemingway’s. They wonder how to make the writing process easier, more fun, and more effective. Yet with direction: a word after a word and a page after a page DOES add up to a finished book.

And your unique voice is the very thing that adds value.

The question is, why have we been trained to believe writing is a rare talent, rather than an acquired skill? 

The Writing Cycle

a little bit about

What’s more, 

why must we master this alone?

If you follow the stages of The Writing Cycle, you will succeed.

I know. Not only am I a published author and writing coach myself, I have edited books published with hybrid presses and large houses, as well as studied Creativity Coaching with America’s foremost expert.

The Writing Cycle evolved out of my desire to help writers get better books publication-ready, with less isolation and greater reverence for the authentic nature of the writing process.

If you hire a writing coach, your skills will accelerate and pages accumulate?

If you need encouragement while drafting, accountability can help?

If you hire a professional editor, elements of craft or grammar may no longer prevent you from publication?



What if I told  you :

DREAM your book using my FREE writing resources.


DEVELOP your book via 1:1 Coaching.


DRAFT your book in Accountability Groups.




REFINE & DELIVER your book with editing.



Reach out


Desert-born word charmer, novice dog-dominatrix, and founder of The Writing Cycle. 

I’m an award-winning short fiction writer in Phoenix, Arizona, who helps writers and wannabe-writers get better books into the world by equipping them with craft to elevate ideas into art. 


I grew up in I grew up in old Phoenix, where sun-ripened grapefruit fell from trees and rotted along sidewalks.

In grade school, I stole paperbacks from the Scholastic Book Fair to read to my grandmother, skipping endings I deemed too sad, or flat-out rewriting them. My siblings and I weren’t allowed to watch television, so reading became my window into the outside world.


I spent summers on tarred beaches before escaping to Kenya, Seoul, and finally an MFA in monsoon-soaked Tucson, 

where I sipped tequila late into nights with classmates, many who would go on to become acclaimed writers of our age. 


Over the course of my life, I’ve spent nearly fifteen years teaching college creative writing, 

worked as editor of literary and commercial publications, and managed editorial for one of the world’s largest women’s web properties. 


The longer I taught, the more I recognized that personality could never be extricated from the things (and ways in which) we create.

Personhood imprints distinction and relatability on the page. This inspired me to undertake study in trauma psychology, MBTI certification, and creativity coaching with America’s foremost expert.


I came to realize that while I was a good writer, I am a transformative editor and coach.

So if there is a story in you just waiting to be written, let me guide you through each
stage of the writing cycle, from inspiration to publication.

Reach out




Hardships including blood cancer, complex trauma, and traumatic bereavement have taught me how to create amidst chaos, and make meaning in whatever context life provides. I do this by identifying a sense of purpose: mine is to connect with compassion, while communicating authentic experience.

Writing is just one way I achieve this.

Sharing how to do this with clients is another. 

I called my consultancy The Writing Cycle because I wanted to reflect the authentic nature of the writing process. Many coaches apply a business-model to creativity, but that rarely produces innovative results.

Writers are artists, writing is art, and art must be honored.
In an age when it’s increasingly easy to publish quickly, it’s more important than ever to publish well. (Not to mention to enjoy the journey!) I have edited projects published with large houses, small presses, and self-publishers, and understand what readers want: the perfect pairing of escape + transformative experience. 


But let’s talk about you . . .

'm the writing coach and editor for you, if you’re ready to:    

Dig deep into your passion, purpose, and personality on the page.


Shape  your story.

Find and convey your signature style as a writer. 

Emphasize the inner journey.

Translate big-picture ideas into actionable tasks.

Blast through blocks to finally write your book. 

Leave with a professionally-edited manuscript. 

Transition from aspiring writer to professional author.

Reach out and tell me about your project.


that guide my process.


Read  them here.

To learn more about The Writing Cycle, take a peek at

Professional bio:

CAROL TEST holds an MFA from the University of Arizona, where she served as editor-in-chief of Sonora Review. Her short stories have been nominated for a Pushcart prize and two Glimmer-Train Short Story Awards for New Writers,, her debut collection for The Flannery O’Connor Award by the University of Georgia Press. 

She has taught creative writing through The University of Arizona, Arizona State University, Phoenix and Mesa Community Colleges, and The Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing. 

Her work has been published in journals including Night Train, Red Rock Review, The Normal School, The Coachella Review, Monsoon Voices, The Review Review, Pilgrimage, and Other Voices, among others. She is the recipient of Arizona Commission on the Arts awards and scholarships to the Sewanee, Bread Loaf, and DISQUIET Conferences.

During quarantine, she took up poetry to explore the loss of her youngest brother during the COVID-19 pandemic. You can hear her read those early poems through the Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing.

Or check out Carol’s fiction in The Coachella Review.

Carol is located in the Scottsdale | Phoenix, Arizona area, and works with writers nationwide.

Stop by!