At TLC we work with an excellent team of highly skilled editors, who assess work written in English by writers at all levels, from novice to published, across fiction, non-fiction, short stories, poetry, scripts and screenplays. Many of our readers have received particular acclaim. Some specialise in very specific genres, like picture books, high-concept literary, fantasy YA, self-help, or memoir, others read across a wider range of work, but all have the particular sensitivity and skills needed to critique the work of others. Each incoming manuscript is hand-matched to one of these editors by our in-house team. Please let us know in your initial correspondence to us if you have a preference, and we will try to accommodate this where possible.
Our readers form an incomparable team. Their many achievements are too numerous to list fully here, but between them they have published bestselling books, won dozens of awards, commissioned work for leading publishing houses and literary agencies, produced award-winning theatre and radio plays, tutored creative writing at UEA, Birkbeck, Goldsmiths and the OUP, worked as writers in residence around the world, and more. We have included a short line to demonstrate what each reader tends to read for TLC, but if you don’t see your genre represented, do just get in touch directly and we can discuss your requirements.
Jane Adams is the author of twenty novels, published by Macmillan, Allison & Busby and Severn House (also as Jane A Adams) and a number of short stories both in the UK and USA in the Sci-Fi, Fantasy and Horror genre. Ghostly and carefully subverted Sci-Fi elements frequently also find their way into her Crime novels, (Bird, The Angel Gateway, Like Angels Falling, for example). Her first novel, The Greenway, was nominated for both the CWA John Creasey award and the Authors’ Club award for most promising first novel. Her novels have been translated into a dozen languages. She has taught creative writing at all levels from beginner to MA and also mentored other writers. She was the Royal Literary Fund Fellow at Leicester University and then at DeMontfort University from 2005-9 and returned to the RLF in 2014, where she is at Nottingham Trent. She is currently working on another Crime novel in the Naomi Blake series and also a Fantasy aimed at the Young Adult market. Jane runs hauntedstair.blogspot together with young adult author Stuart Hill and she also has her own blog at: janeadamsauthor.wordpress.com.
For TLC Jane reads Young Adult, fantasy, sci-fi, crime and thrillers
Kate Ahl is a freelance editor who has long inhabited two very different literary worlds: academic publishing, and commercial women's fiction, including romance and erotica. Having worked with academic publishers Routledge and Pearson, where she commissioned and developed approachable humanities titles - including books in the Thinking in Action series, a 'grown-up' list of York Notes for literature undergraduates, and Andrew Cowan's intimate and elegant The Art of Writing Fiction - she jumped rails and moved to fiction publishing, acquiring and developing titles for Harlequin Mills & Boon, Carina UK, Mira Ink and boutique digital publishers Bookouture. While she maintains a lively interest in helping early career academics revise their PhDs for publication, and is a reader for OUP's Very Short Introductions series, the bulk of her work in recent years has involved coaching burgeoning romance and erotica authors through the twists and turns of world-building, characterisation, conflict, and writing good sex – an activity that is given a lively underpinning by her training as a psychotherapist.
For TLC Kate reads romance, erotica, and women's commercial fiction
Davinia Andrew-Lynch is an agent and editor. Initially an associate film/tv agent, she simultaneously built up her freelance editorial career working with a number of literary agencies, scouts and publishers (including OUP, Egmont, Constable and Robinson and most recently Atom). In 2015, she formed her own agency (Andlyn) specialising in children’s fiction and content (picture books to YA).
Davinia loves encouraging debut writers’ talent; working with them to fully realise their ideas and nurture their authorial voices.
For TLC Davinia reads children's, middle grade fiction and high-concept YA with a particular interest in genre (SFF/Historical)
Noga Applebaum has a PhD in Children’s Literature from Roehampton University. Her book, Representations of Technology in Science Fiction for Young People, was published by Routledge in 2009. She currently lectures on Children’s Literature at the Open University and teaches creative writing for people wishing to write for children and teens at the Hampstead Garden Suburb Institute. Noga participated in the three volumes of the Ultimate Book Guide and regularly interviews children’s authors and reviews new titles for several websites. In the past Noga worked for Booktrust and piloted a national creative writing programme for teenagers. She is twice winner of the London Writers’ Competition and is currently working on a YA novel.
For TLC Noga reads children's and YA fiction
Sue Atkinson was a teacher and researcher in primary education for several years publishing academic books and articles, and also books for teachers and children, both fiction and non-fiction. She runs workshops on writing for children and tutors over the internet. She has written several ‘life writing’ books and Climbing out of Depression (Lion 1993) has been translated into 12 languages. Her book, Breaking the Chains of Abuse (Lion 2006), is about her journey of recovery from childhood sexual abuse. Her latest book Struggling to Forgive: Moving on from Trauma is due out later this year.
For TLC Sue reads children's fiction and non-fiction, life writing, and memoir
Frankie Bailey began her scriptwriting career in 1989, successfully squeezing through the narrow aperture of “sitcom” (Birds of a Feather, Love Hurts, Lenny Henry Show) and surviving relatively unscathed to go on to write for medical and legal ‘precinct’ drama series (Casualty, Crown Prosecutor, Peak Practice and Heartbeat). Her recent Radio 4 drama (Signs and Wonders) received glowing press reviews.
She has a distinguished background in English Literature and History, but it hasn’t held her back in the least! She also edits fiction manuscripts for TLC, specialising in historical fiction, biography and music. Frankie is currently writing a a trilogy of stage plays on three Southern authors.
For TLC Frankie reads non-fiction (scripts, screenplays, biography and autobiography) and fiction (special interest in historical fiction)
Rachael Beale has spent much of her career experimenting with words and technology, writing for technical companies or doing technical things for literary ones. She read English Literature at Trinity College, Cambridge before training as an editor. She is now Web Manager for the London Review of Books, and currently has responsibility for editorial and technical management of the London Review Bookshop website, including overall strategy, and content planning and production. Her eye for talent-spotting is well regarded in the industry, and she was a judge for the 2013 Costa First Novel Award. She continues as an editor on a freelance basis, and has also contributed book reviews to a number of websites, including Booktrust and Fiction Uncovered. She was a contributor and Advisory Board member for the women's literature online magazine Belletrista.com
For TLC Rachael reads literary fiction, literary-commercial crossover and short stories
Martyn Beardsley is a writer of fiction and non-fiction for children and adults. His Sir Gadabout books have been published in several countries, and were turned into an award-winning series for CITV. Several of his other children’s books, both fiction and non-fiction, also have a historical theme. Smuggler! and The Last Duel were both published by Barrington Stoke, who specialise in books for children who are reluctant readers, or suffer from dyslexia or other reading difficulties. For adults he has written Deadly Winter, a biography of the Arctic explorer and Trafalgar veteran Sir John Franklin, co-edited Gratefull to Providence, the diary of an eighteenth century apothecary-surgeon, and Waterloo Voices. His Victorian crime novel Murder in Montague Place features Bleak House's Inspector Bucket as its protagonist. In addition to history, one of Martyn's special areas of interest is spirituality of all kinds, but especially Eastern religion and culture. He is a Buddhist, and practices Yoga and Tai Chi.
For TLC Martyn reads children's and YA fiction, historical biography and memoir, and works with Buddhist themes
Dzifa Benson has 9 years of creative writing teaching experience that covers storytelling, poetry, plays, songwriting, opera, journalism and life writing. Her own artistic practice embraces all these ways of writing and as such, she is very comfortable guiding people through the process of different forms of storytelling with constructive criticism and feedback. For 7 years, she led the Shepherds Bush Writers’ Junction and with her help and guidance one participant writer, Sade Adeniran, went on to win the Commonwealth Book Prize (Africa) while another, Hisham Matar, was long listed for the Man Booker Prize.
Dzifa regularly works with young writers in schools and other institutions such as Booktrust, Southbank Centre, the Royal Geographical Society, the University of East London, on tour with the British Council in South Africa and the UK and with older people in sheltered accommodation with Westminster Arts. She has extensive teaching experience in higher education, on community participatory arts projects and within the creative industries, most of it focused on Creative Writing and Applied Theatre.
Most recently she was a facilitator on English PEN’s Make My Day project where she worked with young people who recently arrived in the UK as immigrants and therefore have little or no English. She helped them to write poetry and stories that were published in a book for sale later this year. In addition to this, last year she was recruited as a long list judge for the Commonwealth Short Story Prize and Commonwealth Book prizes.
For TLC Dzifa reads poetry, fiction, memoir and short stories
Kavita Bhanot grew up in London and lived for many years in Birmingham before moving to India where she directed an Indian-British literary festival and worked as an editor for India’s first literary agency. Kavita is enrolled on a PhD at Manchester University, and has Masters in Creative Writing and in Colonial and Post-colonial Literature, both from Warwick University. Her short stories and non-fiction have been published widely in anthologies, magazines and journals, two of her stories have been broadcast on BBC Radio 4, and she is the editor of the short story collection Too Asian, Not Asian Enough (Tindal Street Press, 2011). She is also a reader with The Literary Consultancy and teaches Creative Writing and Literature at Fordham University.
For TLC Kavita reads literary and commercial fiction
Fran Bigman is a writer and academic who has held research and teaching positions at the University of Leeds and Brunel University. In 2014, she received a PhD in English from the University of Cambridge for a thesis exploring the representation of abortion in British fiction and film from 1907-1967, a topic she has discussed on BBC Radio 4 Woman’s Hour. She also holds an MPhil in English from the University of Cambridge. Before moving to the UK, she studied at Brown University and Columbia University and spent over three years in the editorial department of Alfred A Knopf, Pantheon, and Schocken Books at Random House in New York. She has also worked for W.W. Norton & Company in New York and the literary agents AP Watt and The Wylie Agency in London. Fran’s essays and book reviews have appeared in the Times Literary Supplement, The Conversation, Wasafiri, Forbes.com, Words Without Borders, Fiction Uncovered, and the Jewish Quarterly. She has also served as reviews editor of Fiction Uncovered, Words Without Borders, and the Jewish Quarterly.
For TLC, Fran reads sci-fi, dystopia, non-fiction and literary fiction
Sarah Bower is a prize-winning novelist and short story writer. Her first novel, THE NEEDLE IN THE BLOOD, was Susan Hill’s Book of the year 2007, and was excerpted for a reading on BBC Radio 3’s The Verb. Her second, SINS OF THE HOUSE OF BORGIA (originally published in the UK as THE BOOK OF LOVE) has been translated into nine languages and appeared on bestseller lists in Canada and Italy.
Her short fiction has appeared in QWF, The Yellow Room, Spiked and Buzzwords among others. She has a creative writing MA from UEA, where she has taught Creative Writing, and currently teaches for the Open University and the Unthank School. She also works as a mentor to beginning novelists. In 2014 she was appointed writer in residence at Lingnan University in Hong Kong. Sarah is currently working on a contemporary novel and a short story collection. She also publishes thrillers under a pseudonym. She has a website here.
For TLC Sarah reads literary, contemporary and historical fiction, thrillers, and short stories
Matthew Branton is the author of four novels, The Love Parade, The House of Whacks, Coast and The Hired Gun, all published in the UK by Bloomsbury and translated into Japanese and Russian overseas. He was involved in the controversial New Puritans project (Fourth Estate, 2000) and his fifth novel was recently published in a groundbreaking online venture with the Independent on Sunday, for whom Matthew also reviews regularly. He has lectured in creative writing as far afield as the University of Hawaii, and has worked with The Literary Consultancy for several years.
For TLC Matthew reads literary and commercial fiction (historical, crime, thriller) and non-fiction (humour, guides, self-help, biography)
Tom Bromley has been working in publishing for over ten years, including five years as a commissioning editor for both Little, Brown and Anova Books. He is the author of eight books: the novels, Crazy Little Thing Called Love and Half A World Away (Pan Macmillan), We Could Have Been the Wombles (Penguin), The Encyclopedia of Guilty Pleasures and Shopping While Drunk (John Murray), Rock and Pop Elevens (Michael O’Mara), All in the Best Possible Taste (Simon and Schuster) and four ghostwritten works.
For TLC Tom reads fiction and non-fiction, specialising in crime/thriller, romantic comedy, commercial fiction, and memoir
Wayne Burrows’ recent publications include Black Glass: New & Selected Poems (Shoestring, 2015), Eastern Bloc Songs: A Sampler (Nottingham Contemporary, 2016) and Exotica Suite & Other Fictions (Shoestring, 2015), the latter also released as a CD, Exotica Suite, made in collaboration with the musician Paul Isherwood (The Soundcarriers). In recent years, he has increasingly worked collaboratively and on such commissioned works as The Apple Sequence (Orchard Editions, 2011), Spirit Wrappings (Nottingham Contemporary, 2012), Marine: A Story In Eight Objects (Nottingham Castle/Fermynwoods Contemporary Art, 2013) and The Disappearances/The Peel Street Codex (Sidelong, 2013). He edited Staple Magazine from 2007 until 2010 and has worked extensively in journalism, visual arts and performance. He currently lives in Nottingham.
For TLC Wayne reads poetry and literary fiction, and is interested in experimental projects
Stephen Carver is a writer and academic. He is the co-director of Green Door Designs, a graphic design company specialising in book layout and cover design, and until recently he taught creative writing for the University of East Anglia. Steve holds a Ph.D in English literature from UEA, where he also taught from 1994 to 2002, before taking up an associate-professorship in English literature at the University of Fukui, Japan. He returned to the UK in 2005, lecturing in critical theory and running an award winning student study skills service at the Norwich School of Art and Design until 2010, when he returned to UEA. He specialises in Victorian literature, Life Writing, Historical and Genre Fiction, Narratology, and the Gothic, and has been the recipient of several national and international research awards, most notably two from the Arts and Humanities Research Council of Great Britain. His biography of the Victorian novelist William Harrison Ainsworth, The Life and Works of the Lancashire Novelist, was published by Mellen in 2003, and he has also published extensively on literature, film, and comics, most recently contributing essays to the Wiley-Blackwell Encyclopedia of the Gothic, and The Works of Tim Burton: Margins to Mainstream (Palgrave MacMillan 2013). He has published short fiction in Cascando, Not Not, Birdsuit, and Veto, and is the founder of the ‘Bushy Park’ online writers’ group. He is presently running a new programme of online creative writing courses for the Unthank School of Writing, a subsidiary of the independent publishing group Unthank Books, and taking a year out from academia to edit the Jack Vincent papers.
For TLC Stephen reads literary and commercial fiction, genre fiction (sci-fi, fantasy, horror, Gothic), and Life Writing
Tim Clare is a writer, stand-up poet and musician, who performs all over the UK. His memoir about having one last shot at chasing your dreams, We Can’t All Be Astronauts, won Best Memoir/Biography at the East Anglian Book Awards. He has written for the Guardian, The Times, and the Independent, presented the Channel 4 series How To Get A Book Deal, and has appeared on BBC2, and Radio 1, 2, 4 and 6. He also writes scripts for video games, including the English script for Nexus: The Jupiter Incident, on which he worked with voice actors as consultant director.
For TLC Tim reads sci-fi, fantasy and YA fiction
Angela is an author, playwright, columnist, screenwriter and broadcaster specialising in narrative non-fiction, memoir, crime/thrillers, observational humour and opinion pieces. Her debut crime thriller Follow Me (Avon) was named Amazon’s Rising Star Debut of the Month January 2016. Follow Me has been short listed for the Good Reader Page Turner Award 2016, and long listed for the Crime Writer’s Association Dagger in the Library 2016. The second instalment in the Social Media Murder Series, Watch Me (Avon), is out November 2016. Angela’s memoir Confessions of a Fashionista (Ebury) is an Amazon Fashion Chart bestseller. Her play, The Legacy, enjoyed it's first run at The Hope Theatre in June 2015. In 2015 Angela was awarded the Young Stationers' Prize for achievement and promise in writing and publishing. She has appeared on BBC Radio 4's Woman's Hour, on stage at Camp Bestival, and given talks and workshops at numerous book events. She has designed and delivered lectures to MA students, and workshops to GCSE pupils and loves being a reader for TLC. More can be found on her website www.AngelaClarke.co.uk
For TLC Angela reads memoir, non-fiction humour, women's commercial fiction and crime fiction
Amanda Cohen has a distinguished background in publishing, having worked at Virago, and at HarperCollins for eight years where she worked in the editorial department of the children's fiction division. She is the author of two picture books, Two's Company (Viking Penguin, New York) in 1995 and That Baby (Books in the Attic, Israel) in 2010 under the name Amanda Benjamin. She has run creative workshops, as well as mentoring writers one-on-one. She currently works as a YA reader for Kinneret-Zmora, a leading trade publishing house in Israel, and as a freelance editor specialising in children's fiction and teen/YA books, with a particular interest in magic and fantasy related texts, and is working on her first Young Adult title.
For TLC Amanda reads picture books, children's fiction, and YA fiction
Jane Commane founded independent poetry publisher Nine Arches Press since 2008, where she currently works as editor and publisher. Since its inception, she has produced and published over forty collections of poetry and short stories. Nine Arches Press publications have been awarded the East Midlands Book Award, a Sabotage Award, and been shortlisted for the Michael Marks Pamphlet Prize. Jane has extensive experience as a creative writing and poetry tutor for Writing East Midlands, Writing West Midlands and various literary festivals including the Birmingham Literature Festival. She has delivered poetry seminars at the University of Warwick, as well as editing poetry magazine Under the Radar as part of Nine Arches Press.
For TLC, Jane reads poetry and short stories
Kieron Connolly has experience within film, journalism and publishing. He gained a Diploma in Screenwriting from the National Film & Television School, two of his films going on to win many awards. He has worked as a script reader for FilmFour Productions and The Works and as a journalist for the Daily Mail WEEKEND Magazine, movieScope Magazine and Writer’s Forum. He currently works in editorial for publisher Amber Books and freelances for the Mail on Sunday. As an author, he has written four illustrated non-fiction children’s books. His first book for adults, Dark History of Hollywood – A Century of Greed, Corruption and Scandal Behind the Movies, was published in 2014.
For TLC Kieron reads scripts, screenplays and treatments
Jude Cook lives in London and studied English literature at UCL, where he graduated with a First. Originally a musician and songwriter, his first novel, Byron Easy, won the Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook Competition in 2007, judged by The Literary Consultancy. It was bought by William Heinemann (Random House) and was published in February 2013. Along with writing fiction, he has six years' experience of tutoring English literature and language to A-level and undergraduate students. He has written for the Guardian, the Spectator, Literary Review, TLS, and Review 31. His essays and short fiction have appeared in Litro, Structo, Storgy, Long Story Short and Staple magazine. His website is www.judecook.com
For TLC Jude reads literary and commercial fiction, short fiction (novellas/short stories), memoir, and screenplays
Cherry Cookson worked for many years as a Senior Radio Drama staff producer for the BBC, winning many national and international awards for her productions, including two Gold Sony Awards and directing several plays that won Writers’ Guild awards. She also directed the BBC entries for the Prix Italia and Prix Futura and won the New York International Programming award for a World Service Drama production. She now works freelance as an independent radio producer, teaches radio acting and creative writing and works as a script consultant. She has recently directed two plays for BBC Radio 4 and is working on a play for BBC Radio 3 for the Olympics.
For TLC Cherry reads scripts, radio plays, and short stories
Paul M.M. Cooper is a novelist, journalist and editor who grew up in Cardiff, Wales. After graduating from the UEA Creative Writing MA, Paul taught English in Sri Lanka. While there he returned again and again to the ruins of Polonnaruwa, learnt to speak Sinhala and to read Tamil. His critically acclaimed novel River of Ink was published by Bloomsbury in 2016.
For TLC Paul reads historical and South Asian fiction
Stephanie Cross was the ghostwriter for Genesis guitarist Mike Rutherford's memoir The Living Years (Constable, 2014), a Sunday Times bestseller. She is also a highly experienced literary journalist, reviewing regularly for the Daily Mail among other publications. Stephanie was educated at the University of Cambridge and holds a BA in English and an MPhil in English Studies (Distinction). She has acted as a freelance manuscript consultant to the David Godwin Literary Agency, mentored writers through Shape Arts, a disability-led arts organisation, and in 2006 was recognised by the Arts Council, East “Escalator” talent scheme as one of the ten best emerging prose writers in the Eastern region.
For TLC Stephanie reads literary and commercial fiction, and non-fiction
Heather Dyer writes picture books and novels for children aged 7-11. The Girl with the Broken Wing was one of Richard and Judy’s ‘Best Children’s Books Ever’, and The Boy in the Biscuit Tin was nominated for the Galaxy Best British Children’s Book Award. Her books have been broadcast on Radio 4, and are studied in schools at Key Stage 2. Heather also teaches creative writing at Aberyswyth University, where she is the current Royal Literary Fund Fellow.
For TLC Heather reads children's fiction
Gill Farrer-Halls is the author of nineteen published non-fiction books in the Mind Body Spirit genre, including The Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Buddhist Wisdom, Working with Karma and The Aromatherapy Bible. She has also edited several published non-fiction titles. A practising aromatherapist, she has been a Principal Teacher and Examiner with the International Federation of Aromatherapists for many years. Gill occasionally works as Production Manager/Producer for The Meridian Trust Buddhist Film & Video Archive and has produced and directed many of their DVD programmes of the Dalai Lama and other Buddhist teachers.
Gill has a BA in English, Film and Drama, and has studied on two post-graduate courses: in theories and teaching of composition, and deconstructionism applied to poetry, and in creative writing and self-development. She has also attended several creative writing courses with the Arvon Foundation and is currently working on a novel.
For TLC Gill reads MBS, literary fiction, and memoir
Nathan Filer lectures in Creative Writing at Bath Spa University. His stand-up poetry has been a regular fixture at festivals and spoken-word events across the UK, and has been broadcast on BBC 3 television and radio 4, 7 and 5 Live. He is also a BBC Best New Filmmaker. His debut novel The Shock of the Fall was acquired in the UK by HarperCollins in an 11-way auction and has so far been translated into ten languages. In 2014, The Shock of the Fall won the Costa Book of the Year Award.
For TLC Nathan reads literary and commercial fiction
C. J. Flood is the author of Infinite Sky, a coming-of-age novel about family, love and betrayal for young adults and ex-young adults. The novel received glowing reviews in The Guardian, Mail, and Telegraph, and was selected as one of the Telegraph's Top Ten YA Books of the Year. It was longlisted for the Carnegie Medal, and shortlisted for the Leeds Book Award and the James Reckitt Hull Children's Book Award. Chelsey lives in Bristol where she is finishing her second book, due from Simon and Schuster in 2014. She has an MA in Creative Writing from the University of East Anglia, and teaches Creative Writing to teenagers and adults in a variety of settings. She is also part of live literature collective Kill Your Darlings, and has performed her work at festivals across the country. In 2014, Infinite Sky was announced as the winner of the Branford Boase Award.
For TLC C.J. reads YA fiction
Peter Forbes is a science writer with a special interest in the relationship between art and science. He has written numerous articles and reviews, many specializing in the relation between the arts and science, for the Guardian, Independent, The Times, Financial Times, Nature, Scientific American, New Scientist, World Medicine, Modern Painters, New Statesman, and other magazines.
He was editor of the Poetry Society's Poetry Review from 1986-2002 and edited Scanning the Century: The Penguin Book of the Twentieth Century in Poetry (Viking, 1999). The Gecko’s Foot, a book on the new science of bio-inspired materials, was published by Fourth Estate in 2005 and was long-listed for the Royal Society Prize. Dazzled and Deceived: Mimicry and camouflage (Yale University Press, 2009) won the 2011 Warwick Prize for Writing. His latest book is Nanoscience: Giants of the Infinitesimal (Papadakis), co-written with the sculptor Tom Grimsey. He teaches the Narrative Non-fiction short course at City University, London, and is RLF Writing Fellow at Great Ormond Street Hospital.
For TLC Peter reads poetry and non-fiction (popular science, arts, travel)
Karl French has worked for the past 20 years as an editor, writer and journalist for various publishing houses, among them Simon & Schuster, Foruli, Bloomsbury and Faber and Faber, and national publications, including the Guardian, Hotdog magazine and the Financial Times. He has also worked on books by Tim Jeal, Andrew Boulton, Miranda Seymour, Jonathan Fenby, John Kampfner, Lance Price, Peter Hook, Simon Wilde, Glenn Hughes among many others. He was for several years a reader at Bloomsbury Publishing where he read over one thousand manuscripts, and his recommendations for publication included the collected letters of Hunter S. Thompson, the reissued novels of Terry Southern and Easy Riders, Raging Bulls, Peter Biskind’s history of Hollywood in the 1970s which became a major best-seller. Karl has worked on several memoirs and biographies, most recently he worked as an editor of Bill Bruford’s autobiography. He has also written and edited several books on the cinema and music – titles including Screen Violence, chosen by JG Ballard in the Sunday Times as his book of the year, This Is Spinal Tap – the Official Companion, Cult Movies, Art by Film Directors and Abba Unplugged – and works for TLC and on a freelance basis as a reader, editor, mentor and editorial consultant. He also works as a reader for Aitken Alexander Associates.
For TLC Karl reads literary and commercial fiction, and non-fiction (biography, autobiography, memoir, travel, political histories)
Rose Gaete was an agent for six years at the prestigious Wylie Agency where she worked with authors such as Salman Rushdie, Martin Amis, Ahdaf Soueif, Jon McGregor and Paul Theroux. She is currently an editor and reader for a variety of publishers including HarperCollins, Bloomsbury and Atlantic Books. She has an MA in English Literature from Cambridge University. Her particular specialty is contemporary novels. Rose works as a manuscript consultant and mentor for TLC.
For TLC Rose reads literary and commercial fiction
Karen Godfrey first read scripts at the BBC and then moved on to work at HarperCollins publishers. She worked as an editor on the company’s prestigious crime list, working closely with authors such as Val McDermid, Reginald Hill and Iain Pears. Karen was involved in all stages of the editorial process and would also look at and report on new typescripts that came in. A manuscript that Karen worked on for TLC, Night Heron, by Adam Brookes, is forthcoming in May 2014 with Sphere.
For TLC Karen reads literary fiction, specialising in crime and thriller, and women's commercial fiction
Helen Gordon’s first novel, Landfall, was published in 2011. After university she worked as an editor at Granta magazine before leaving to pursue a freelance career. She currently teaches creative writing at the London Metropolitan University and continues to work as a freelance editor. Her journalism has appeared in, among other places, the Independent, the Guardian and Intelligent Life magazine. In 2011 she received an Art’s Council grant to help fund the research and writing of her second novel.
For TLC Helen reads literary and commercial fiction
Karol has a diverse background with years of experience working with playwrights, film and television writers as well as bestselling novelists. She has been Lynda La Plante’s script and copy editor and an integral part of her development team for the past three years. In that time she edited the novels Backlash, Wrongful Death, and the quick read novel The Escape. She also script edited Season 4 of the highly acclaimed ITV Television series Above Suspicion, and has helped develop numerous other film, television and theatrical projects as well as working with self- and traditionally published writers one on one.
Karol has a Master of Fine Arts Degree from Yale School of Drama, a BA in Drama and English Literature, and a Post Graduate Diploma from NFTS in Script Development.
For TLC Karol reads scripts, screenplays, and a range of fiction including crime, historical, coming-of-age, women's fiction and magical/spiritual fiction
Vicky Grut started out on the staff of the independent publishers Lawrence and Wishart in the late 1980s. Titles she edited there, and subsequently as a freelance, ranged from academic texts to a political thriller by MP Peter Hain, ex-Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and Wales. She was a creative writing tutor for Birkbeck College for several years, and co-taught an Arvon Foundation course in 2001. Her short stories have appeared in literary magazines and anthologies, including Random Factor (Pulp Faction, 1997), Reshape Whilst Damp (Serpent’s Tail, 2000), Valentine’s Day: stories of revenge, (Duckworths, 2000), Resist (www.pulp.net, 2005) and New Writing 13 (Picador, 2005), New Writing 14 (Granta, 2006) and Waving at the Gardener (Bloomsbury, 2009). In 2009 she was a finalist in the Asham Awards and in 2006 she was the winner of the Chapter One Promotions International Short Story Competition. She teaches creative writing at London South Bank University.
For TLC Vicky reads literary and commercial fiction, and short stories
Alan Harris is currently under commission to BBC Radio 4 and Welsh National Opera. His The Opportunity of Efficiency played at the New National Theatre Tokyo (a collaboration with National Theatre Wales) and other writing credits include: The Future For Beginners (liveartshow/Wales Millennium Centre), Marsha (Capital Fringe, Washington DC), A Good Night Out in the Valleys (National Theatre Wales), Rhinegold, Manga Sister (both for liveartshow at The Yard, London), Façade (Crashmat Collective), Wolf, The Lighthouse (both for BBC Radio 4), The Gold Farmer (BBC Radio 3), The Journey (Welsh National Opera MAX), The Hidden Valley (Birdsong Opera/WNO) Cardboard Dad (Sherman Cymru), Miss Brown To You (Hijinx Theatre), Brute (Operating Theatre Company), Orange (Sgript Cymru) and was part of Paines Plough’s Come To Where I’m From tour. He is also a new writing tutor, working with organisations including Welsh National Opera and Sherman Cymru. In 2015, Alan was awarded the Judges' Award in the Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting.
For TLC Alan reads theatre scripts and libretti
John Harrison is a freelance writer and traveller, and a lecturer specialising in adventure cruise travel in polar regions, Latin America and other remote areas. He writes travel books, history, short stories, reviews and journalism. He has twice been a winner of the national travel writing competition: the Alexander Cordell Award. His first travel book, Where the Earth Ends, was a Sunday Times Book of the Week. His second, Cloud Road, won the 2011 Wales Book of the Year, and is about five months travelling through the Inca heartland in the Andes, walking 700 miles on old Inca roads. Forgotten Footprints, 2012, is a history of the exploration of the Antarctic Peninsula, based on the memoirs of little known sailors, sealers, whalers and explorers who slowly uncovered the last continent. He is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, a member of the Welsh Academi, the Royal Society of Literature, and the British Guild of Travel Writers, and has won their narrative travel writing award for best book. His new book, 1519 A Journey to the End of Time, saw him travelling along the route of Hernán Cortés in his conquest of Mexico. When not travelling, he lives in Cardiff and London.
For TLC John reads non-fiction (travel, self-help), short stories, horror and historical fiction
Daniel Jeffreys has been an editor with TLC for 10 years. He holds an MA in Creative Writing with Distinction from UEA. His short stories have been widely anthologised in publications including Tales of the Decongested, Litro, Ambit and The London Magazine. His freelance journalism inlcudes comic features for Esquire magazine and book reviews for the TLS and The Tablet. He also runs short story workshops in libraries. He is particularly interested in the ghost story and the Weird Tale.
For TLC Daniel reads contemporary and comic fiction, Weird fiction, horror and short stories
Doug Johnstone is a writer, musician and journalist based in Edinburgh. His sixth novel, The Dead Beat, was published by Faber & Faber in 2014. His previous novel, Gone Again, was a bestseller and Hit & Run, published in 2012, was an Amazon #1, as well as being selected as a prestigious Fiction Uncovered winner. His novel before that, Smokeheads, was nominated for the Crimefest Last Laugh Award. Before that he published two novels with Penguin, Tombstoning (2006) and The Ossians (2008), which received praise from the likes of Irvine Welsh, Ian Rankin and Christopher Brookmyre.
Doug was writer in residence at the University of Strathclyde 2010-2012 and before that worked as a lecturer in creative writing there. He’s had short stories appear in various publications, and since 1999 he has worked as a freelance arts journalist, primarily covering music and literature. Doug is currently also working on a number of screenplays for film and television.
For TLC Doug reads literary and commercial fiction, specialising in thriller, crime, and YA
Sam Jordison is an author, journalist and publisher. He is a co-director of Galley Beggar Press, an independent publisher from Norwich which has published award winning books such as Eimear McBride's A Girl Is A Half-formed Thing. He regularly writes about books for the Guardian and has written for most other UK national papers. His own best-selling books include the Crap Towns series and Sod That: 103 Things Not To Do Before You Die.
For TLC, Sam reads literary fiction, non-fiction (humour, travel, religion) and books dealing with Ancient History
Michael Langan is an editor and writer. He has taught writing for fifteen years and was senior lecturer and Programme Leader of Creative Writing at the University of Greenwich from 2002 – 2012, where he specialised in short story writing and the novel. He has a PhD from Liverpool John Moores University in contemporary creative writing and a background in performance poetry. His short stories and poetry have been anthologised and published in magazines, journals and online. From 2007 – 2010 he was managing editor of Brand Literary Magazine, responsible for selecting and editing the magazine’s fiction and non-fiction content. He currently writes on visual arts, film and literature for the online magazine Polari and has a particular interest in contemporary literary fiction as well as historical fiction.
For TLC Michael reads historical fiction, literary and commercial fiction
Sue Lascelles has many years’ editorial experience and has worked for some of the UK’s leading publishing houses, including Orion, Little, Brown, and Penguin Random House. In touch with current market trends – particularly in the areas of commercial non-fiction, literary fiction and MBS – she specialises in guiding new writers towards successful publication, as well as supporting established authors through the editorial process. She has a MA in Creative Writing from the University of Exeter.
For TLC Sue reads MBS, literary fiction, and commercial non-fiction
Jonathan Lee is a British novelist and editor. His first novel, Who Is Mr Satoshi? (Random House) was shortlisted for an MJA Open Book Award, nominated for the Desmond Elliot Prize for Literature, and translated into a number of languages. His second novel Joy (also Random House) was an Observer Book of the Year in 2012 and is being adapted for television. The BBC’s Culture Show programme recently featured him as being one of Britain’s ‘best new novelists’ & The Guardian has called him ‘a major new voice in British fiction’. He is an editor at Guernica Magazine and tutors writers for the Arvon Foundation. Click here for his website.
For TLC Jonathan reads literary and historical fiction, and short stories
Maxine Linnell is a novelist, poet, editor, teacher and mentor, based in Leicester. Vintage (2010, Five Leaves) is a time-swap novel set in 1962 and 2010, and Closer (2012, Five Leaves) is a young adult novel about sexual abuse. She also retold three Thomas Hardy novels for ESOL and new readers (Real Reads), and Bloomsbury published Breaking the Rules (2011, Bloomsbury) in their Wired Up series for reluctant readers. She teaches memoir, the novel and editing skills for Writing East Midlands, mentors new writers and edits and proofreads novels. She is also a psychotherapist and bibliotherapist.
For TLC Maxine reads YA fiction, psychological fiction and memoir
James Lovegrove is the author of more than 50 books, and his work has been translated into twelve languages. His novels include the New York Times bestselling Pantheon series – plus a collection of three novellas. He has produced three Sherlock Holmes novels, and has a Holmes/Cthulhu mashup trilogy in the works, the first volume – The Shadwell Shadows – is due out in November 2016. His latest series is an outer-space action-adventure series.
James has sold well over 40 short stories, and has produced a dozen short books for readers with reading difficulties. His work has been shortlisted for numerous awards, including the Arthur C. Clarke Award, the John W. Campbell Memorial Award, the Bram Stoker Award, the British Fantasy Society Award and the Manchester Book Award. His journalism has appeared in periodicals as diverse as Literary Review, Interzone and BBC MindGames. He is a regular reviewer of fiction for the Financial Times and has also contributed features and reviews about comic books to Comic Heroes magazine.
For TLC James reads Sci-Fi, YA, children's, horror, historical, shorts and graphic novels
Ben Lyle has over fifteen year’s experience in screenplay development, working for the UK Film Council, Fine Line Features and as a development executive for Working Title Films. He was the head of development for Gorgeous and is now a freelance story editor, screenplay and book consultant for among others Working Title and Working Title TV, Studio Canal, Wilder Films and Curtis Brown. Ben has recently completed a PhD in screenplay development practice from UEA and prior to that gained an MA in Creative Writing (prose) from UEA. His debut literary novel Terms was recently published by Hookline Books and has been described as 'convincing and compelling'.
For TLC, Ben reads screenplays and treatments for film and television, as well as all books for adaptation potential
Alan Mahar is the former Publishing Director of Tindal Street Press, responsible for a prizewinning list of 70 titles of literary fiction that earned three Man Booker listings, two Orange, three Commonwealth Writers, two Costa First novel winners, a Betty Trask, three Desmond Elliotts – a track record of one-in-three prize-listed. As a small publisher, his responsibilities in addition to the business side, included commissioning and editing many books and overseeing their production. He enjoyed working closely with authors (such as Gaynor Arnold, Raphael Selbourne, Maria Allen, Paul Wilson, Anthony Cartwright and many others) to prepare their work for the scrutiny of the market. He is the author of two novels, Flight Patterns (Gollancz. 1999) and After the Man Before (Methuen, 2002), His other publications comprise short stories, anthology editing, reviews and articles for Literary Review, London Magazine, Warwick Review, Observer, Bookseller and others. He has recently resumed working on a novel put aside due to the pressures and pleasures of publishing. He is now a freelance consultant editor, writer and creative writing lecturer at several universities in the Midlands.
For TLC Alan reads literary and commercial fiction, and short stories
Melissa Marshall worked for literary ‘super’ agent Ed Victor before becoming an editor at Simon & Schuster where she worked for five years on women’s fiction, literary fiction, crime and thriller. She commissioned, edited and published authors such as Jules Hardy, Annabel Dilke and Kate O’Riordan, and worked closely with many others including Adriana Trigiani, Will Rhode, Victoria Glendinning, Jennifer Weiner and Kathy Lette. She is now an independent editor and reviewer for books and film, freelance editing fiction and non-fiction for publishing houses including Canongate, Macmillan, Orion, Hodder and Atlantic. Melissa also assesses books for their small screen and big screen potential for the BBC, and does consultancy work for unpublished authors through an Arts Council initiative as well as TLC.
For TLC Melissa reads literary fiction, crime, thriller and women's fiction
Lesley McDowell is the author of three books of fiction and non-fiction. Her book Between the Sheets: Nine 20th Century Women Writers and their Famous Literary Partnerships was shortlisted for Scottish Book Awards 2011.Her latest historical novel, Unfashioned Creatures, was published in October 2013. She also reviews regularly for the Independent on Sunday, the Herald and the Scotsman, and has worked as a freelance editor as well as teaching creative writing and devising workshops for writers.
For TLC Lesley reads historical fiction
Claire McGowan is an established novelist and has written several acclaimed novels in both the crime and romance genres. Her first novel The Fall was published by Headline in 2012, and since then her Paula Maguire series of crime novels has received strong reviews and been optioned by BBC Drama for a television series. Claire was the Director of the Crime Writers' Association for two years and established the Crime Thriller MA at City University London, where she is Senior Lecturer. She has taught writing workshops for many organisations including Guardian Masterclasses and Arvon. As a journalist, she has written for Glamour, The Times, The Guardian and Writing Magazine and has been described as 'a knock-out talent' by crime writer Lee Child.
For TLC Claire reads crime, romance and women's fiction
Sheila McIlwraith worked as a writers’ agent for many years, then as a commissioning editor with André Deutsch. Authors she has worked with include Julian Barnes, Sarah Dunant, Sally Cline, Patricia Ferguson and Peter Mayle, and the books she has advised on and edited range from literary and popular fiction, through biography, history, popular medicine and science, travel, and all sorts of general nonfiction. Latterly, she has been teaching creative writing and English literature in Scottish secondary schools and FE colleges. She was educated in Glasgow and Oxford.
For TLC Sheila reads fiction and general non-fiction
Eloise Millar’s first novel, Wednesday's Child, was published by Virago in 2005 and went on to be shortlisted for the Young Minds Award. Elly also moonlights as a journalist, writing mainly for The Guardian, and has over ten years' experience in editorial work and publishing. In 2012 she co-founded Galley Beggar Press, an independent publisher that has since received many plaudits in the media and, in its first year, saw three of its authors receive national awards (including the inaugural £10,000 Goldsmith’s Award). She is currently working on her second novel (Bleeding Heart Yard). Bleeding Heart Yard has been commissioned by Virago and has received awards from the Arts Council and the Authors' Foundation.
For TLC Eloise reads fiction (literary, chick-lit, thrillers, ghost stories) and non-fiction (memoir)
Miranda Miller's seventh novel, The Fairy Visions of Richard Dadd, was published by Peter Owen in 2013 and is part 2 of her Bedlam Trilogy. She has also published a book of short stories about expatriate life in Saudi Arabia and a book of interviews with homeless women and politicians. Hilary Mantel said of her work, " Miller's intricate fictions are lit by the dark flicker of a strong and original imagination." She has been a TLC mentor for six years and is a Royal Literary Fund Fellow at the Courtauld Institute.
For TLC Miranda reads magical realist and historical fiction
Sam Mills was born in 1975 and graduated from Oxford University with a degree in English Lang & Lit. Since then she has been a full-time novelist and has published 11 books to date. Her young adult novels, ‘A Nicer Way to Die’, ‘The Boys Who Saved the World’ and ‘Blackout’ are dark, crossover thrillers which are published in the UK by Faber & Faber. Her work has been translated into 5 languages. ‘The Boys Who Saved the World’, a satire on the War on Terror, is currently being made into a film with Tyger Drew-Honey, the star of ‘Outnumbered’ attached to star in the lead. ’Blackout’ has been nominated for the Carnegie prize and the Manchester Book Award and was recently shortlised for the Lancashire Book Award. Her debut adult novel as Samantha Mills, ‘The Quiddity of Will Self’, a quirky literary novel about sex, death, Will Self and the Great Vowel Shift, was published by Corsair in 2012.
For TLC Sam reads YA fiction, women's fiction and literary fiction
Susan Milord is an award-winning author and illustrator. Born in Connecticut, Susan spent her childhood in New Mexico, and went to school in both England and Mexico. She graduated from the Kansas City Art Institute in 1977 with a degree in graphic design, before starting work at Family Circle magazine in New York, then went on to be a freelance graphic designer. Since 1989, she has published 15 books for the American market with worldwide distribution to English-speaking countries. Several of her books have been translated worldwide, including into German, Chinese, Korean and French. Her work includes hands-on learning books for early readers, picture books, and re-tellings of folk tales. She is particularly interested in fiction for young readers with an international context, and especially in stories that take inspiration from folk tales.
For TLC, Susan reads children's fiction, educational material for children, and picture books
Ewan Morrison is the author of the novels Swung, Menage and Distance (Jonathan Cape/Vintage), the collection of short stories The Last Book You Read (Chroma) and the mixed genre abook/app Tales from the Mall (Cargo). His novel Close Your Eyes (Jonathan Cape) was the winner of the Scottish Book of the Year Fiction Prize in 2013. He has been a recipient of multiple awards and bursaries and was short listed for the Prince Maurice Prize in 2008 and an Arena Magazine Man of the Year Award in 2005. He also directs television and makes TV and radio appearances as a cultural critic. He lives and works in Glasgow.
For TLC Ewan reads literary and commercial fiction
Kate Murray-Browne is a freelance editor of fiction and non-fiction. Kate was previously at Faber & Faber as Associate Editor working with many authors such as John Carey, Claire Keegan and Michael Frayn. Kate studied English Literature at Cambridge University and also studied at the Chelsea College of Art and Design. Previously, Kate worked at Phaidon Press Ltd in the editorial department, where she supported the publication of the major art history compendium 30,000 Years of Art.
For TLC, Kate reads literary fiction and non-fiction, memoir, young adult and life writing
Courttia Newland is a novelist, playwright and screenwriter. His first novel, The Scholar, was published in 1997. His is the co-editor, alongside Monique Roffey, of Tell Tales 4: The Global Village (2009) and of IC3: The Penguin Book of New Black Writing in Britain (2000). His latest novel, The Gospel According to Cane, was published by Akashic Books (US) and Telegram (UK) in February 2013, and was shortlisted for the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award in 2014. In the same year, his play Trim Palace was shortlisted for the Theatre 503 Playwright’s award and longlisted for the Alfred Fagon Award. Courttia's career has encompassed both screen and playwriting; plays include B is for Black, and an adaptation of Euripedes' Women of Troy. He has been nominated across his long-form and short fiction work for the IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, the CWA Dagger in the Library Award, the Alfred Fagon Award, the Frank O’ Connor Award and The Edge Hill Prize.
Courttia is currently an associate lecturer in creative writing at Birkbeck, University of London. He has extensive experience teaching young people, undergraduates and postgraduates in a variety of settings both nationally and internationally, including for the British Council, Arvon Foundation, Kingston University and City Lit. Courttia has also been invited to speak at a number of conferences including Crime Across Cultures (Leeds University 2010), AWP Conference (Vancouver 2004), On Whose Terms (Goldsmiths University, 2009). Courttia was also a Royal Literary Fund Fellow from 2003-2004.
For TLC, Courttia reads urban literary fiction, surrealist fiction, science fiction, crime, experimental/postmodern fiction, African Diaspora fiction, and creative non fiction including memoir
Sally O-J (Orson-Jones) is a literary editor and writer’s mentor, who has worked with a wide range of authors, with experience ranging from absolute beginners to an established TV scriptwriter and a Booker Prize shortlisted novelist. She especially loves the process of brainstorming and developing works in progress. Sally has been the reader for award-winning novelist Sarah Waters (Fingersmith, Affinity, Tipping the Velvet, The Night Watch, The Little Stranger) on all her books and continues to work with her. She collaborated with Viv Albertine of The Slits on her autobiography Clothes, Clothes, Clothes, Music, Music, Music, Boys, Boys, Boys, published in 2014, and is currently working with her on the sequel. Previously, Sally was a journalist and editor in the music business, and has written and edited scripts for broadcast, entertainment news, album sleeve notes, and features. She is comfortable working in genres as diverse as literary fiction, biography, historical fiction, fantasy, romance, crime and mystery, as well as non-fiction and converted fan-fiction.
For TLC Sally reads fiction and non-fiction, specialising in historical, literary, mystery/thriller and converted fan-fiction
Sanjida O’Connell has had four novels published by Black Swan and John Murrays (Theory of Mind, Angel Bird, The Naked Name of Love and Sugar Island) and four works of non-fiction (Mindreading: How we learn to love and lie; Sugar: The grass that changed the world; Nature’s Calendar and Chimpanzee: The making of the film). She was one of the winners of the Betty Trask award, was short-listed for The Asian Award for Literature, was one of the winners of The Daily Telegraph’s young science writer’s award, and was short-listed for Asian Woman of the Year. She also writes feature articles on science and green issues for national newspapers and magazines and has had columns in The Times and BBC Wildlife Magazine. She teaches workshops on creative writing and science writing for the media and has presented wildlife programmes for the BBC with Chris Packham, as well as directing science documentaries for the BBC. She has a PhD in animal psychology.
For TLC Sanjida reads non-fiction (science/environment), fiction featuring scientific ideas or concepts, and women's fiction
Antonia Parkin has worked for several years as a children’s book editor at Frances Lincoln Publishers. She has a wide range of expertise covering poetry, story books and fiction and non-fiction picture books. She is also a freelance writer of educational books for children and a translator. Among her recent publications are translations of Jacques Duquennoy’s award-winning French picture books, Ghost Party and Loch Ness Ghosts. She lives on the Wirral with her family.
For TLC, Antonia reads children's illustrated fiction, children's fiction, and children's poetry
Alex Peake-Tomkinson is a writer, editor and bookseller. She worked in book publishing for seven years, most recently as the Online Editor at Portobello Books. She has an MA in 20th Century English Literature and currently reviews fiction for the Daily Mail and the Times Literary Supplement. Her writing has also appeared in the books pages of the Guardian, the Financial Times, the Telegraph, the Metro and Time Out.
She specialises in contemporary fiction.
For TLC Alex reads literary and commercial fiction
Jane Purcell used to work in children’s books at Random House, but left to go freelance. She wrote for the Guardian, Mslexia, and New Woman before moving into script writing. Since then she has written and performed sketch comedy for radio (The Way it Is on Radio 4) and television, (Smack the Pony for Channel 4 and The Sketch Show for ITV/Baby Cow). Her first play was Beryl du Jour for Radio 4, followed by a five-part Woman’s Hour series for Radio 4, Cooking for Michael Collins. The Guardian described it as ‘Gripping’, and the Financial Times said, ‘Jane Purcell’s retelling of the story of Pidgie Rigney (spy, gunrunner, cook and pre-eminently a member of the women’s branch of the IRA) is immediately gripping. Writing, production and acting deftly sketch in the complex, often contradictory feelings of post-1916. Riveting.’ Her next Woman’s Hour series was about the history of girls comics, 43 Years in the Third Form. The Telegraph said it was ‘funny, ingenious and evocative.’ She has also adapted The Indian in the Cupboard for the Saturday Play and abridged numerous books for radio. She is currently writing a television pilot comedy and teaching creative writing at the Open University.
For TLC Jane reads scripts, screenplays, children's fiction and general fiction
James Pusey studied English Literature at the University of Bristol and subsequently worked in the publishing industry for over a decade, most recently as a literary agent at Aitken Alexander Associates in London, whose client list includes successful authors such as Mark Haddon, Sebastian Faulks, Catherine O’Flynn and Robert Wilson. He is now a freelance editor.
For TLC James reads literary and commercial fiction (crime, thriller) and short stories
Aisha Rahman previously worked in the editorial department at HarperCollins for several years. Before moving to London, she was a lecturer at a university in Pakistan, where she taught a range of multidisciplinary courses, including a course on Pakistani Literature. Aisha particularly enjoys writing from the Indian subcontinent, but reads widely within contemporary fiction and YA fiction, and has a special interest in politics and history, both of which she has lectured in and enjoys editing work that engages with related themes.
For TLC Aisha reads literary and commercial fiction, and YA fiction
Lisa Robbins is a university lecturer in Creative and Academic Writing and runs workshops for beginning though advanced writers in the City. As a writer, she has published fiction in UK magazines. Her work has been Highly Commended in The New Writer and she recently won Third Prize in London’s Writer-of-the Year Award. She currently she teaches Advanced Creative Writing and Short Story Writing for the Mary Ward Centre, as well as teaching Writing for the YA Market and Improvers Fiction courses there. Lisa has a background in journalism: she worked on trade and general interest publications as staff and freelance writer. She tutors children and adults in English Literature, English Language and in all kinds and levels of Writing.
For TLC Lisa reads YA, sci fi and fantasy fiction
Imogen Robertson was born in Darlington and studied German and Russian at Cambridge University. After ten years directing TV, film and radio she became a full time writer on winning the Telegraph’s ‘First thousand words of a novel’ competition in 2007. Since then she has written five novels in the Westerman and Crowther crime series which is set in the late 18th century, beginning with Instruments of Darkness in 2009. The new volume in the series, Theft of Life, is set against the background of the transatlantic slave trade and was published in May 2014. She has also written The Paris Winter - a novel of betrayal and revenge set in the late Belle Époque. She has been shortlisted for the CWA Historical Dagger three times and is the current Chair of the Historical Writers' Association.
For TLC Imogen reads historical and crime fiction
Monique Roffey is an award-winning Trinidadian-born British writer and memoirist. She is the author of five books, four novels and a memoir. Three of her novels are set in Trinidad and the Caribbean region. The White Woman on the Green Bicycle (2009) was shortlisted for the Orange Prize in 2010 and the Encore Award in 2011. Archipelago (2012) won the OCM BOCAS award for Caribbean Literature in 2013 and was shortlisted for the Orion Award 2014. House of Ashes, published in 2014, is a novel drawn from historical events and tells the story of a gunman, a hostage and a child soldier caught up in a botched coup d’etat. It was shortlisted for the COSTA Fiction Award, 2015 and longlisted for the OCM BOCAS Award in 2015. Her memoir, With the Kisses of His Mouth traces a personal journey of mid-life sexual self-discovery and recovery from a love affair. She divides her time between the East end of London, and Port of Spain, where she teaches creative writing.
For TLC Monique reads literary fiction, memoir, experimental work, magical realism, women's fiction and Caribbean-focused fiction
Cynthia Rogerson has published four novels and a collection of short stories. These include Upstairs in the Tent (Headline Review), Love Letters from my Deathbed (Two Ravens), I Love You Goodbye (Black & White), and Fly & other stories (Salt Publishing). She won the V.S. Pritchett Prize in 2008, and her stories have been broadcast on Radio 4 and 2, as well as included in anthologies and literary magazines. Her novels have been nominated for the Saltire Prize and the Scottish Arts Council Book Prize.
Cynthia has an RLF Fellowship and is based at Dundee University two days a week. She supervises students on the creative writing program at Edinburgh University, as well as mentoring young writers through the Moniack Mhor Bridge Program. She also teaches creative writing to adults and children, and is a part-time lecturer in Creative Writing for the Universities of Edinburgh and Dundee. Cynthia writes book reviews, and her fifth novel, Wait for me Jack, is published in January 2017. She has a website here.
For TLC, Cynthia reads short stories, poetry and fiction
Jacob Ross has been hailed as ‘a writer of formidable technical range and emotional depth’. His novel Pynter Bender was published in September 2008 to much critical acclaim. It was shortlisted for the 2009 Commonwealth Writers Regional Prize and chosen as one of the British Authors Club’s top three Best First Novels (2009). Jacob is also the author of acclaimed short story collections, Song for Simone and A Way to Catch the Dust. He has edited and co-edited numerous anthologies of short stories and is a committed and highly gifted creative writing teacher. He has taught, amongst other places, at Arvon and Goldsmiths University and currently lectures in Narrative Craft and International Literature in England and abroad. Jacob has mentored many promising writers through to successful completion of their manuscripts. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and has been a judge of the V.S. Pritchett Memorial Prize, the Olive Cook, Scott Moncrieff and Tom-Gallon Literary Awards.
For TLC Jacob reads literary and commercial fiction
Rowan Routh is a freelance editor and reader. She has worked for the Jo Unwin Literary Agency, MacLehose Press, Picador, Chatto & Windus and City University. She was the originator and editor of a series of short fiction, Park Stories for The Royal Parks, commissioning the work of eight acclaimed short story writers including William Boyd, Ali Smith, and Will Self. She started her career in publishing at Rogers, Coleridge & White Literary Agency, where she worked for Peter Straus, whose clients include Colm Toibin, Neel Mukherjee, Kate Atkinson, Alexander Masters, Adam Thirlwell and Carol Ann Duffy. Rowan was educated at Oxford.
For TLC, Rowan reads literary commercial fiction, memoir and non-fiction
Imogen Russell Williams is an arts journalist and editor, with a BA in Classics and English and an MA in Text and Performance Studies. She writes a regular blog on contemporary and classic children's literature for The Guardian, as well as articles about reading in general. She also reviews books, usually YA and fantasy/SF, for The Metro. Imogen has worked for three years as a freelance editor and as a consultant to the Andrew Nurnberg Agency, helping writers refine their manuscripts.
For TLC Imogen reads children's fiction, picture books and YA fiction
Sibyl Ruth’s first poetry collection, Nothing Personal, was published in 1995 by Iron Press. A chapbook, I Could Become That Woman (Five Leaves), followed in 2003. Her poems have appeared in numerous magazines and anthologies, and have been broadcast on radio and TV. She lives in Birmingham and is a former Laureate of the City. Sibyl has taught creative writing for the Open College of the Arts and at the University of Birmingham. For five years she organised the literature programme at the Midlands Arts Centre. She is a member of the editorial advisory panel of Tindal Street Press and an assessor for the Arts Council of England. Currently she is working on a set of audio pieces about Birmingham’s Central Library.
For TLC Sibyl reads fiction and non-fiction (memoir) and poetry
Hannah Sheppard is a Branford Boase Award nominated editor who has worked in trade publishing for over a decade. She started her career at Macmillan Children’s books before moving to Headline Publishing Group to run the YA and crossover list where she published Tanya Byrne's HEART-SHAPED BRUISE and Julianna Baggott's PURE trilogy. She is now a literary agent with the D H H Literary Agency representing authors such as Abi Elphinstone, Keris Stainton and Honor and Perdita Cargill. She edits children’s fiction from 9 upwards with a specialism in young adult and crossover fiction.
For TLC Hannah reads children's, crossover and YA fiction
Amanda Smyth is Irish-Trinidadian and was educated in England. Her first novel, Black Rock (Serpent’s Tail), won the Prix du Premier Roman Etranger 2010, and was selected for Waterstones New Voices in 2009. It was also chosen for Oprah’s Summer Reads for 2009, shortlisted for NAACP award and the McKitterick prize. Amanda’s second novel, A Kind of Eden was published in July 2013 by Serpent’s Tail. She teaches Creative Writing at Arvon and Skyros.
For TLC Amanda reads women's fiction, and general fiction
Anna South has worked in publishing for nearly twenty years and is as experienced with fiction as she is with non-fiction. During her seven years at Penguin UK she worked on all the adult imprints – latterly at the Penguin Press - and was lucky enough to be the first person at Penguin to read and champion the submission for Zadie Smith’s debut novel White Teeth. The authors she published under the Allen Lane imprint included top ten best-selling writer Simon Jenkins, journalist Stephen Glover and the late Ian Hamilton. She also worked extensively on the Modern Classics lists commissioning many translations of works by authors such as Proust and Freud, and Introductions by a range of distinguished writers. Anna now works as an editorial consultant and reader (in both English and French), and her clients have included eight of the UK’s major publishing imprints (for whom she has frequently undertaken complete structural edits and rewrites), a leading literary agency and many different authors in a private client capacity. In addition she’s written twelve Afterwords for the hardback series, Collectors’ Classics, edited the best-selling Penguin anthology Poems of the Great War, and was one of the shortlist readers for the 2014 and 2015 Bridport Peggy Chapman-Andrews First Novel Award. A number of the TLC submissions that Anna has worked on in recent years have gone on to become published books.
For TLC Anna reads literary and commercial fiction (historical, women's fiction) and non-fiction
Cynthia Stamy holds a D.Phil. in English from the University of Oxford and an M.Phil. specialising in the Modernist period. Her book, Marianne Moore and China: Orientalism and a Writing of America, was published by Oxford University Press in 1999. Cynthia as long been interested in the literary crosscurrents between East and West and, following Wellesley (A.B. English), she explored Chinese culture in graduate work at Harvard (Special Student), Yale (A.M. East Asian Studies) and Princeton (Graduate Fellow) universities. She was a freelance fiction manuscript consultant for Virago Press and has worked as a researcher with scriptwriters to adapt novels into screenplays. Cynthia taught English literature and writing courses in America at Brown University, from which she also holds a Master’s degree specialising in American literature. As an experienced freelance editor, Cynthia is comfortable across genres in both fiction and non-fiction, and with supporting authors during the editorial process. Currently a literary/arts reviewer for The Global Dispatches, she is attentive to the international market for fiction in English.
For TLC Cynthia reads literary and commercial fiction, women's fiction, and poetry
Ashley Stoke was educated at St Annes’ College, Oxford and the University of East Anglia (where he took an MA in Creative Writing). He is Head of School of the Unthank School of Writing and teaches creative writing for the OU. His stories have appeared in The Warwick Review, Staple, London Magazine, Fleeting Magazine and Fwriction Review among others. He also contributed a chapter to The Creative Writing Coursebook (MacMillan, 2001). He won a 2002 Bridport Short Story Award for The Suspicion of Bones. His first novel, Touching the Starfish was published in 2010 by Unthank Books. His 2013 short story collection, The Syllabus of Errors was longlisted for the Frank O’Connor International Short Fiction Award. He is also co-editor of the short fiction series Unthology. His personal website is: www.ashleystokes.net.
For TLC Ashley reads literary and commercial fiction, genre fiction (sci-fi, fantasy, horror) and non-fiction (memoir/autobiography)
Julia Stoneham began writing in the late 1970s, after an early career as a stage designer, and over the following twenty years wrote mainly for television and radio. Two original films [Phoebe and The Bell-Run] were produced by BBC Television Drama and Julia was also a regular writer on The House Of Eliott series. In excess of a dozen original plays were commissioned and broadcast by BBC Radio Drama as well as features and dramatisations including a serialisation of Susan Howitch’s novel Penmarric and for the Classic Serial slot, Patrick White’s novel, Voss. It was during that period that Julia began to move into fiction. Originally this took the form of short stories commissioned by the BBC. The most recent was Blue Afternoon which was produced and read by Martin Jarvis. Fourteen From Four, a collection of previously broadcast short stories, was published in 2005 by the Elebana Press and 2008 saw the publication [Allison & Busby Ltd] of Muddy Boots And Silk Stockings, the first of a trilogy of novels set in rural England during World War two. The second, The Girl At the Farmhouse Gate, came out in 2010 and the third, Alice’s Girls, in 2011. She produced a dramatisation for BBC Radio 4 of Julian Barnes’ novel “Talking It Over” which was broadcast in 2012.”
For TLC, Julia reads literary fiction, radio plays, and short stories
Thalia Suzuma is Head of English Publishing at the Bloomsbury Qatar Foundation. There, she works to develop prize-winning fiction, non-fiction and academic works; identifying talent across the Middle East and promoting it internationally. She was previously Publishing Director at HarperCollins and an editor at Pan Macmillan and has been working in publishing for ten years. Thalia has worked with such authors as Cecelia Ahern, Lauren Weisberger, Tony Parsons, Barbara Taylor Bradford, Rosie Thomas and Jeffrey Archer. She also published the best-selling sequel to The Devil Wears Prada whilst at HarperCollins. Thalia is bilingual French-English and has a working proficiency in Arabic. She has run creative writing and publishing workshops at Oxford, UCL and Southampton University.
For TLC Thalia reads literary fiction, commercial women’s fiction, book club fiction, and has a special interest in Middle Eastern fiction and work in translation
Mary Tomlinson was Fiction Editor at Bloomsbury Publishing for nearly twenty years. For much of that time she worked with Liz Calder on her distinguished list, editing writers such as John Berger, Will Self, Patricia Highsmith, Brian Moore and Joanna Trollope. Since 2007 she has been editing fiction on a freelance basis, and is writing a novel. She has reviewed fiction for the Literary Review and literary biography and literary criticism for the Times Higher Education Supplement.
For TLC Mary reads literary and commercial fiction
Patsy Trench has a Masters degree in Theatre Text and Performance at RADA and Birkbeck College. A former actress, scriptwriter, script editor, lyricist and children’s theatre director, she now teaches and lectures on British Theatre at Kingston University, and organises theatre tours for overseas students. She has had three books published, the latest titled The Worst Country in the World, the story of colonial Australia in the early 1800s as seen through the eyes of her ancestors. She has published a practical guide to producing ebooks and paperbacks and she also teaches self publishing writers how to convert their own manuscripts.
For TLC Patsy reads theatre scripts, screenplays, and non-fiction (memoir, life writing)
Rachel Trezise was born in the south Wales valleys in 1978 and studied journalism at the University of Glamorgan and University of Limerick. Her first novel, In and Out of the Goldfish Bowl, won a place on the 2001 Orange Futures List, while her debut collection of short fiction, Fresh Apples, won the EDS Dylan Thomas Prize. Her latest novel is Sixteen Shades of Crazy. She also writes non-fiction and drama.
For TLC Rachel reads short stories, literary and commercial fiction, and memoir
Saskia Vogel is a literary translator, writer and editor. She holds an MA in Comparative Literature from UCL and a Master of Professional Writing from the University of Southern California. She is the Swedish series editor and translator for Readux Books, and has previously worked as a magazine editor, journalist, and publicist for Granta magazine, working on their events series and press campaigns as well as contributing to the magazine.
Saskia has written for a number of publications including The White Review, Los Angeles Downtown News, Granta.com, Citizen LA, LArt magazine, SCARF and Severni Bunker (Serbia). She is a co-founder of the international communications collective Dialogue Berlin and her translation of Katrine Kielos’s Who Cooked Adam Smith’s Dinner? is due for release in 2015.
For TLC Saskia reads high concept literary fiction, women's fiction, and fiction dealing with feminism, gender and sexuality
Ahren Warner's first book, Confer, was a Poetry Book Society Recommendation and shortlisted for both the Forward Prize for Best First Collection and Michael Murphy Memorial Prize. His second collection of poems, Pretty, was published in June 2013 and also received a Poetry Book Society Recommendation. He received a Society of Authors Eric Gregory Award in 2010, Arts Council England Awards in 2008 and 2012 and was also the recipient of the Arts Foundation Poetry Fellowship in 2012. Ahren's poems appear in various major anthologies, including London: A History in Verse (Harvard University Press, 2012), Identity Parade: New British and Irish Poets (Bloodaxe, 2010) and Voice Recognition: 21 Poets for the 21st Century (Bloodaxe, 2009) and he is the editor of various works including the Best British Poetry 2013 anthology (Salt). He is currently Poetry Editor of Poetry London, and a tutor in the English Department of Queen Mary, University of London.
For TLC Ahren reads poetry
Shelley Weiner is the author of five novels. South African-born, she worked as a journalist, PR writer and editor in a publishing house before turning to fiction. She is widely known as an inspirational creative writing tutor and nurturer of new talent, and tutors regularly for Guardian Masterclasses, the Faber Academy, Peirene, and Skyros Writers’ Lab. She served as a Royal Literary Fund Fellow for five years and has subsequently been appointed Advisory Fellow. Shelley has lectured on the Creative Writing MA at Anglia Ruskin University, as well as for Birkbeck College, the Open University, the Taliesin Trust, the British Council in Israel, and Durham University Summer School.
For TLC Shelley reads literary and commercial fiction, and non-fiction (memoir)
Tessa West’s professional career has been spent largely in prisons. She was an assistant governor and, later on, an Independent Member of the Parole Board. Her non-fiction book Prisons of Promise was published by Waterside Press. The first creative writing she did was poetry, but she has successfully self-published three novels, The Estuary, The Reed Flute and Companion to Owls. Each of these is set in East Anglia, where she has lived all her adult life. Landscape is a feature in Tessa’s writing, as is her interest in identity and belonging.
Tessa was one of the first mentors at TLC, work she enjoys greatly and is able to combine with her own writing. Two years ago, as the final project for her MA in Writing the Visual (at the Norwich School of Art and Design), she created The Other Vikings, a hand-made book containing poems about or in the voice of Viking women. While writing The Curious Mr Howard, her biography of the prison reformer which was published in 2011 by Waterside Press, she was awarded the Arthur Welton Award. She has had short stories published in Unthology 1 and 2 and is currently working on a series of poems inspired by maps.
For TLC Tessa reads literary and commercial fiction
Alan Wilkinson has specialised in non-fiction and historical subjects. He has written three company histories and compiled two collections of Great War correspondence, including, “Thank God I’m Not A Boy!”, The Letters of Dora Willatt, 1915-18 (Hull U Press, 1997). He has also scripted commentaries for 200 TV documentaries, and written a number of Emmerdale episodes. His travel features have appeared most recently in the Wyoming-based American Cowboy. In 2004 he was appointed Jack Kerouac Writer in Residence in Orlando, Florida. His ghosted biography of Warwickshire batsman Wasim Khan, Brim Full of Passion, was Wisden’s Cricket Book of the Year, 2007. For the past four years he has been ghosting the Mike Pannett series (Now Then, Lad etc.) for Hodder. In 2011 he was awarded a Wingate Scholarship and spent six months on a cattle ranch in western Nebraska, studying the life and work of Mari Sandoz. He is currently completing a narrative account of his experiences there. His blog is available at walkinonnails.blogspot.com.
For TLC Alan reads a broad range of non-fiction
Evie Wyld is a novelist and bookseller. Her first novel After the Fire, a Still Small Voice won the John Llewellyn Rhys Prize as well as a Betty Trask award, and she was also short listed for the Orange prize for New Writers and the IMPAC award. She has written short stories, essays and articles for, amongst others, Granta, Vogue, the Guardian, The Observer, and The Telegraph.
She was educated at Bath Spa, and then at Goldsmiths University London for her MA in Creative Writing. She was recently listed as the one of the Culture Show’s 12 of the Best New Novelists.
For TLC Evie reads literary and commercial fiction
Kerry Young was born in Kingston, Jamaica to a Chinese father and mother of mixed African-Chinese heritage. Her first novel Pao, was published by Bloomsbury and Bloomsbury US in 2011. It was described by The Independent On Sunday as `A pacy but absorbing saga of domestic struggle and gangland manoeuvring set against the violent backdrop of post war Jamaican politics’. Pao was shortlisted for the Costa First Novel Award, Commonwealth Book Prize and East Midlands Book Award. Kerry’s second novel, Gloria, was published by Bloomsbury and Bloomsbury US in 2013. It was longlisted for the OCM Bocas Prize for Caribbean Literature and shortlisted for the East Midlands Book Award. Kerry’s third Bloomsbury novel in her Jamaican trilogy, Fay, is scheduled to be published in spring 2015.
For TLC Kerry reads literary and commercial fiction