Literary Conference 2014 - The Literary Consultancy


Inspirational writers, publishers, agents, and influential figures from across industry


Pitch directly to leading agents and editors


New collaborations, new opportunities


Learn how different writers make self-publishing work for them


Explore new business models, formats and technologies


Masterclasses, workshops, and pitching sessions


This year, TLC celebrates 20 years of working with writers, and being the UK’s very first and leading editorial consultancy. As part of our birthday celebrations, we re-formatted our flagship Literary Conference into a two-day programme of events to bring our guests something extra special.

Saturday June 11th

9.30am-2pm, Free Word Centre, London
To continue in the tradition of providing our clients with the most up to date information from the publishing industry, we hosted TLC Writers’ Day (sponsored by IngramSpark) with three key talks: ‘How to Pitch’, with Scott Pack; ‘How to Publish’, with Ben Galley; ‘How to Market’, with CreateThinkDo. The day also saw the return of our popular TLC Pen Factor Writing Competition where five shortlisted writers pitched to a live panel of judges including literary agent Juliet Mushens (whose clients include international bestselling author Jessie Burton, The Miniaturist), publisher Valerie Brandes (Jacaranda Books),  literary agent Piers Blofeld (Sheil Land, clients include Nadine Dorries, author of million-selling The Four Streets) and novelist Gautam Malkani (Londonstani, Fourth Estate). We were delighted to welcome special guest Guinevere Glasfurd, 2014 TLC Pen Factor Winner with The Words In My Hand (Two Roads), selected by The Times as Book of the Month for January 2016 and shortlisted for the Costa First Book Award. Kerry Lawrence was declared the 2016 TLC Pen Factor winner with her densely woven, pacy international thriller The Cossack. We look forward to working with her in the coming year.

A full write up and gallery can be found on the TLC Writers’ Day page.TLC-Pen-Factor-logo-600

Friday November 11th

10am-4pm, Free Word Centre, London 

‘What’s Your Story?’: In association with Writers’ Centre Norwich, Free Word Centre, Apples & Snakes, English PEN and FMcM, we hosted a high-level industry conversation with friends, colleagues and special guests. A specially commissioned poem by acclaimed poet Lemn Sissay to the theme ‘The Book Inside’ introduced the day, with a keynote from TLC Founder and Director Rebecca Swift, followed by a conversation with all delegates chaired by Professor Jon Cook (UEA) and rounding up with a series of high-profile Canon Tales by special guests Kit de Waal, Giles Duley, Margaret Busby, Elif Shafak, Henny Beaumont, Mark Ball, Raymond Antrobus and Abi Morgan. The event was by invitation, with a quota of tickets for low-income writers funded by Arts Council England and allocated by our Free Read partner organisations. This event was BSL-interpreted. partner-logos

Join the Conversation

#TLC20 and #TheBookInside on Twitter 

Our November 11th event was by invitation only, but we ran a social media campaign in the lead-up to the event using the hashtags #TLC20 and #TheBookInside to explore key themes addressed on the day. We are also delighted to be working with Free Word who have commissioned a series of international blogs by writers from Russia, China, Southern India and Eritrea to address the theme, available to read on the Free Word website.

We used the following three key questions as starting points for thinking around some of the big issues in publishing, and for our open conversation:

  1. How do you reflect on the expression ‘everyone has a book inside them’?
  2. How do we define literary values, where do they come from, and to what degree are they important?
  3. How has the development of new technologies changed the role of ‘gatekeeping’ in publishing, and how has this affected which books find readers?


TLC Literary ConferenceThe Literary Conference is an essential event for writers and those working with them, to catch up on the very latest in thinking in the book publishing world.

It is brought to you by The Literary Consultancy, The UK’s most established editorial consultancy, supported by Arts Council England. Find out what to expect and how the conference has grown since 2012’s Literary Conference: Writing in a Digital Age, the first conference of its kind in the UK.


  • Maggie Fergusson Director of the Royal Society of Literature

    "Maggie Fergusson (c. Adrian Pope)The Royal Society of Literature is delighted to be involved in TLC’s third Digital Conference: an opportunity to help build bridges between established and emerging writers, and to look to the literary future with tough-minded optimism."

  • Orna Ross Alliance of Independent Authors

    "Orna Ross – Literary Conference SpeakerThere are conferences about writing as craft and art; the importance of writing and literature; and the opportunities new technologies and platforms are offering today’s writers. This conference offers all of this in one."

  • Roger Tagholm Book Industry Journalist

    "Roger-TagholmThere is a huge desire to write among the public and thanks to digitisation and technology, the tools exist for new writers to become published authors. TLC’s conference addresses this confluence, and provides an invaluable forum for the sharing of best practice."

  • Rose Fenton Director, Free Word Centre

    "Rose FentonFree Word is extremely proud of its association with TLC’s Writing in a Digital Age Conference, which brings new audiences from the UK and overseas. This is a unique, landmark event bringing together the traditional and digital publishing world."

  • Kate Mosse Best-selling Author

    "Kate MosseTLC has always supported the best kind of writing, and access for everybody to the best kind of editing – this conference is long overdue, and all credit to them for setting it up."

  • Robert McCrum Associate Editor and Literary Blogger, The Observer

    "R. McCrumTLC is a sharp observer of contemporary writing in Britain today, and this annual conference represents the cutting-edge: incisive, probing – with a hint of danger. It’s a great thrill to be involved. 2013."


Elixabete Lopez ©