Darina Sikmashvili

 darina@sikmashvili.com



I offer writing coaching, manuscript consultations, and creative writing MFA portfolio preparation.

Writing Coaching
I have been working as a writing coach and editor for Gilliam Writers Group since 2019. My clients include memoirists, novelists, and field specialists with book-length projects in major, independent, and academic presses. My approach gets you writing and motivates you to finish. We focus on process over project to develop habits that stay with you past our time together. My rate is $120/hour.

Editing/Manuscript Consultation
I offer developmental edits focused on structural concerns and offer tangible approaches to revision. This is helpful for projects that feel stale as well as unfinished projects. My rate for these edits is 5 cents/word. 

I also offer sentence-level edits focused on style, as well as standard copyediting services. My rate for these edits is 3 cents/word. 

Creative Writing MFA Portfolio Consultation
I offer edits on fiction and nonfiction writing samples, as well as statements of purpose, both academic and personal. I can help you decide between programs, determine priorities, and organize an otherwise overwhelming process. My rate for this depends on your writing sample and portfolio needs. 
Reach out with a brief project description and wordcount for an estimate. I enjoy this work and will meet you where you are in process.  


“Dasha was the ideal coach to support me through revising and submitting my latest nonfiction book. She's smart, attentive, responsive, and creative, offering a perfect balance of structure and motivation.”

“In the past year, Dasha has coached me through the outline, the first draft, and the revisions of my memoir. Each week, she read my work and provided instruction on where to expand, what to cut, and how to make every page better. She consistently responded with grace and compassion while effectively making suggestions to the work. Working with her has been such a joy, I am tempted to write a sequel.”

“I've worked with one creative writing coach at GWG on the full extent of one manuscript and parts of a second one, but after the extensive work we had done on the first one, he suggested that I should have ‘a second pair of eyes’ on the full second one for a beta-read. He recommended Dasha. She sent an exceedingly helpful, well-organized and well thought out editorial letter, filled with ‘actionable’ suggestions that all seem absolutely spot-on and the value of which is apparent from the get-go. I'm very happy and feel that it was worth every dollar I spent.”

“After YEARS of trying to write my memoir and hiring various book coaches from social media, I almost gave up. But I was tired of walking the path alone. I needed someone in my corner. Dasha is everything I ever dreamed of as a writing coach. She's confident, direct, compassionate, kind and extremely competent. It's not an overstatement to say — I love her. :) We are working together until this book is finished.”

“This [nonfiction] workshop was invaluable. I learned about the importance of cultivating a relationship with your writing, like you would a friend. It requires time, attention, and commitment. I really enjoyed the pieces we were instructed to read, and learned how important it is to examine exactly why you like or don't like another writer's piece. I also learned that there is no magic involved in writing--that it is a lot of messy frustration involved and that this is normal! I thought it was just me!”

“Dasha is excellent to work with. She listens deeply, is attentive to story and character, and has a great log/summary system to keep me on track and in motion with my writing.”