I work with people who know all kinds of helpful things: scientists, psychologists, nurses, auditors, architects, lawyers and HR people among others. The thing I know how to do best is to write—and that’s why we work together so well.
People who know a lot about their subject often struggle to express that knowledge clearly to other people who don’t. Trying to explain important findings to government ministers or complex issues to clients can make people feel frustrated and exhausted.
That’s where I can help. I’m good at writing and I enjoy it. More to the point, I can help you to write better and enjoy writing more. Really! There are some simple techniques that help.
I started out my career as a journalist, working on newspapers and magazines in Australia and the UK. That’s a great start for a career of researching complex topics and writing about them simply in a very short time.
When my children were growing up, I took what I thought might be an easier option – working as a government writer and editor. It wasn’t as easy as I thought. That’s where I learnt the art of reducing long technical reports to one-page briefs for ministers. All of a sudden, journalists were on my tail, instead of the other way round, and I didn’t like it. Not to mention that I was learning to write for ministers who had very strong views about writing.
As I got better at these skills, I started to help policy people, technical people and administrators to develop them too.
I found I enjoyed coaching, mentoring and training, as well as writing.
So when the last of the five departments I worked in closed down one day, I decided to go into business as a writing coach and trainer, as well as continuing my work as a corporate writer and editor.
I started up WriteBusiness in 2005 to help clients in government and business overcome their writing difficulties.
Hi, I’m Bev Sullivan
Sandra and I have some similarities and some differences. Far from the world of journalism and headlines, I started my career in a classroom as a secondary school English teacher. I then spent a couple of decades in government, doing every type of writing you could think of. I finished up as a senior manager, where the writing was even more challenging.
Fortunately, like Sandra, I enjoy writing. I love the challenge of getting started, of finding the right words, and I particularly relish that ‘yes!’ moment when it all comes together.
I also enjoy working with people, both as a trainer and a coach, helping them to not only improve their writing, but also to enjoy writing. Does that sound impossible to you? I promise you, it’s not. I’ve been doing this for more than fifteen years now. For the last five, I’ve also been editing and proofreading documents for individuals, government and business organisations. I’m perfectly happy to spend most days neck-deep in words, coming out occasionally to share my enthusiasm with others.
I work on the basis that people learn best when their experience is respected and when the training and coaching is practical and tailored specifically to their needs and relevant. That’s what I deliver, and it’s certainly something Sandra and I have in common.