The popular image of a writer is solitary and romantic. A good writing process is neither. When your whole writing team is the face in the mirror, it’s hard (if not impossible) to see your own blind spots, improve your skills, manage your workload or tackle a project that’s above your pay grade. And it’s lonely.

We prefer to collaborate. The Writing Company has used a team approach since our beginnings in the early 1990s. We’re always helping each other, often by asking questions: Is the voice consistent? Would this anecdote work better in the lede? Is that really what the source meant? And we love it when clients join the conversation.

Our exchanges take place in the margins of Word docs, over the phone and in flurries of instant messages. Sometimes the answer isn’t what you want to hear (“I think we need a whole new intro”). But our collaborative process always results in stronger writing. And it’s a heck of a lot more fun than the alternative.

So if you’re struggling with any aspect of the writing life, look for good people who can help, whether they’re at the next desk or a continent away.