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How To Get Published

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25th March 2017 - 9:00am to 4:30pm


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Writers & Artists are joining forces with York Literature Festival for the third year to bring you a day of getting to grips with the practicalities of writing. Including talks from an array of fantastic authors, panel discussions from leading literary agents, this is a day of discovery dedicated to how you can take your writing to the next level.

Taking place at York St. John University the day – which will cover essential aspects of the writing process, from the importance of first chapters through to the process of editing and re-editing your work – will include: networking drinks reception, interactive panel discussion with literary agents, who are always on the lookout for debut authors to add to their lists. 


09.00-09.30: Registration and welcome teas and coffees

09.30-10.15: Introduction to the day from chair Alysoun Owen, Editor of the Writers' & Artists' Yearbook and the Children's Writers' & Artists' Yearbook

10.15-11.15: First chapters – grabbing your reader from the off  with Emma Flint including 15 mins for Q&A

11.15-11.30: Short break

11.30-12.30: Writing is re-writing – the process of editing with Natasha Pulley including 15 mins for Q&A

12.30-13.15: Lunch break (lunch will be provided)

13.15-14.15: Writing historical fiction with Alison Weir including 15 mins for Q&A

14.15-16.00: How to submit your work to an agent: practical tips from leading literary agents Thérèse CoenImogen Pelham and Tom Witcomb with Q&A

16.00-16.30: Networking drinks

Speaker Profiles

Alysoun Owen is a publisher with over 20 years' experience as a commissioning editor and running her own publishing consultancy business. She has been the Editor of the Writers' & Artists' Yearbook and the Children's Writers' & Artists' Yearbook for four years and is a regular speaker on how to get published at literary festivals and writer events.

Alison Weir is the top-selling female historian in the United Kingdom and has sold over 2.7 million books worldwide. She has published seventeen history books, including Elizabeth the Queen, Eleanor of Aquitane, The Lady in the Tower and Elizabeth of York, and five historical novels. Her latest biography is The Lost Tudor Princess, and her latest novel is Katherine of Aragon: The True Queen, the first in a series of novels about the wives of Henry VIII.

Natasha Pulley studied English Literature at Oxford University. After stints working at Waterstones as a bookseller, then at Cambridge University Press as a publishing assistant in the astronomy and maths departments, she did the Creative Writing MA at UEA. She has lived in Japan and Peru, and now works as a visiting lecturer at City University London. The Watchmaker of Filigree Street is her first novel, and The Bedlam Stacks, will be published in June 2017.

Emma Flint grew up in Newcastle and graduated from the University of St Andrews with an MA in English Language and Literature. She later completed a novel-writing course at the Faber Academy. Since childhood, she has read true-crime stories, developing an encyclopaedic knowledge of real-life murder cases. She lives in London and Little Deaths is her first novel. 

Thérèse Coen is Rights Director at Hardman & Swainson Literary Agency. Born and raised in Belgium, on a diet of frites and Tintin, she moved to England in her late teens, and stayed in London to do a History degree and Masters at UCL. Her first job in publishing was at Bloomsbury Publishing where she started as an intern and left as Rights Executive. After a spell at Ed Victor ltd, Thérèse became Rights Agent at Madeleine Milburn Literary Agency where she sold foreign rights to the entire world alongside building her own list of authors, something which she is excited to be continuing to do at Hardman & Swainson.

Happy to cut her teeth on genres across the board, Thérèse is looking for an original concept or hook, polished and pacey writing, captivating worlds and always a strong kick-ass protagonist, be they fictionalised or real.

Imogen Pelham is a literary agent at Marjacq Scripts, representing authors including Costa Short Story Award winner Angela Readman, Wellcome Prize shortlisted Emily Mayhew and Encore Prize longlisted Olivia Glazebrook. Prior to Marjacq, she worked at Aitken Alexander Associates for five years where she began building her list whilst working alongside Gillon Aitken. She represents literary and high-end commercial fiction, as well as a range of non-fiction including history, psychology, travel and food.

Tom Witcomb has been a literary agent at Blake Friedmann for over 8 years. Born in Milton Keynes, the son of a humble carpenter, he is not the new messiah though did once have a hair/beard combination that rivalled JC. His list contains a broad range of fiction and non-fiction: from police procedural to literary feminist revenge pieces, he also has a taste for high-minded sci-fi and loves non-fiction that focuses on those people and ideas we often overlook.

Event details

The event will be held at Temple Hall, York St John University. Doors will open at 9.00am,with teas and coffees provided upon arrival.

Booking and payment

The price for this event is £95.

Bookings can be made by either clicking on the 'Book' buttons at the top and bottom of this page, or by calling 0207 631 5985.

Price inclusive of standard VAT.

Please note that this is not a ticketed event, so you don't need to bring anything on the day as your names will be on our guestlist.


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