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Testimonials

We're always keen to receive your feedback on our events and editorial services. Here's some of the things you've said so far:

Events

Writers' & Artists' events

How To Write For Children & Young Adults Conference

'Thoroughly enjoyed, very inspirational. Thank you so much for a great day with the right sized crowd and perfectly picked experts to share their knowledge.' Charlotte Scarborough

'I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for a wonderful and inspiring day on Saturday at the Writing for Children Conference. I spent Sunday writing up the notes I made and applying Matt Whyman's practical tips to my own manuscript. It was a pleasure to meet with so many other writers' who feel just as nervous as myself, apparently I'm not alone - who knew!' Shelley Wilson

'A lovely day! Very informative for someone new to the game! I'm super inspired to get cracking and get out there!' Rhiannon Holland

'This was an extremely helpful day, thank you! It was very well organised and informative - just what we needed. I was struck by how incredibly friendly everyone attending and running the workshop was. Being creative seems to bring out the best in people!' Astrid Weber

'Very well organised. Length of sessions was good, lots of variety and chance to ask questions.' Chelle Parker

'The conference offered a well-judged mix of practical advice and inspirational personal stories. The range of speakers – from literary agents, to publishers, to authors – meant that all aspects of the business were covered… [It] has certainly given me the tools to return to my own work not just with renewed enthusiasm but with a sharper editor's eye, too.' Becky Brewis

'Fantastic event. Thank you so much for all the great advice!' Margaret Kim

'Excellent course with so much to think about. Can't wait to get back to my writing.' Zita O'Rourke

'Very professional and friendly, inspiring and realistic. Heading home now to start the search for an agent!' Nikie Forster

'Loved the day, loved the speakers – thank you! Also thought that Alysoun was a perfect host for the day.' Kerensa Jennings

How To Hook An Agent

'Overall I found the event to be extremely useful. I had already researched how to write a query letter and after hearing the agents go over how to properly write one I realised that I was along the right track. It was also great to meet an actual agent in person and realise how important it is to find one who is genuinely interested in the topic you are writing about.' Daniel Kutcher

'The greatest strength of the event is – talks and meetings with the agents apart – the chance to be with other writers, bearing in mind that we are often in a vacuum working by ourselves.' Maggie Wyllie

'[The greatest strength of the event?] The agents and their voices, which replaced the intimidation and fear with hope and understanding.' Susan Coulson

'The chance to meet agents face to face and demystify the publication process.' Louise Mangos

'This was my second How to Hook an Agent. The first revolutionized the direction of my manuscript and provided me with a set goal. This second event has crystalized this direction. Getting to pitch to an agent face to face is priceless and has resulted in a direct request to see my completed manuscript. Thank you Writers & Artists, you guys rock!' Tim Harris

'What was genuinely invaluable was hearing about the submission process directly from agents, being able to put questions, and discovering how the "nitty gritty! of an agent's business life works. That latter was an important insight. Over the years I've research and attended several workshops/seminars. I don't think I am alone when I say that for the first time I understand exactly what needs to go in the submission letter and the synopsis. And just why the two-sentence summary and the first paragraph are so important.' Geoffrey Arnold

'Professional and well-organized, I was impressed by the "tone" of the sessions, particularly the respect shown to aspiring authors.' R. Watt

'I thoroughly enjoyed the day and felt that I took a lot away in terms of understanding how I need to change my submission structure.' Helen Joy

'I found the agents extremely helpful and the time spent discussing the process of submission with them was invaluable. Actually getting to meet and pitch to them was priceless (and my primary reason for attending).' Writer from Saturday 13th April 2013 event

'The day brought out, as no other way could have, the degree of subjectivity amongst agents and publishers. A lesson to be learned - and straight from the "horses' mouths".' Alan Hamilton

'Event was excellent & well worth the money. The one-to-one with the agent was fantastic and almost made the whole thing worthwhile in itself.' Anne-Marie Swift

'A really useful event - it was nice to put a human face to the agents and hear what they had to say. It was wonderful to have an opportunity to practice pitching my story to a real agent who specializes in my chosen area and obtain feedback on my idea. Incredibly useful - it's given me lots of food for thought and will hopefully help me improve.' Sarah Leavesley

'The approachability of the agents - they offered advice in a friendly, un-intimidating manner. The organization was also impeccable.' Luna Chatterjee

Evening Masterclasses

'While the prospect of having my work dissected in public sounded a little scary at first, I soon discovered that I had nothing to fear. A fresh eye is invaluable to the editing process, especially when coupled with frank discussion.' Felicia Yap on attending the Public Edit masterclass with the National Academy of Writing

What a constructive evening! Sally’s knowledge and ideas on character development were impressive, but not intimidating. Her advice was invaluable, and we left the event feeling inspired, reassured, more confident and ready to create and write some great characters of our own. Attendee from our Character Development masterclass with Sally Green

'The greatest strength? The personal insights from the author… were very well structured and the exercises were great!' Amy Harvey

'I thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to engage in the exercise and to hear other writers work and to share my own. I would definitely attend more Masterclass sessions.' Helen Fisher

'Friendly, good, informal atmosphere.' Arun Debnath

'Good examples, very well structured, very informative and impressive.' Maria Teresa Dangerfield

'The greatest strength was hearing how an established writer develops his characters and his writing process.' Aarthi Sambasivan

'Excellent talk – clear points, relevant issues.' Dennis Harding

'Informal and relaxed, the speakers were approachable.' Emma Shaw

'Hearing about issues I have dealt with was encouraging.' Penny Riley-Smith

'It made me think in a deeper way about what I’m trying to do.' Anthony Doran

Having an 'expert' to give tips and tricks. The practical hot pen exercises and being with other writers and feeling I had joined a community of practice

How to Get Published

'The information coming through was compelling, the advice invaluable.' A writer from our 2013 conference

'I have page upon page of notes full of exactly the kind of advice and information I need.' A writer from our 2013 conference

'The quality and presentations were above expectations, as was the venue.' A writer from our 2013 conference.

'Very good course, well organised… well worth attending.' A writer from our 2013 conference

'Excellent, so informative and useful.' A writer from our 2012 conference

'A lot of wisdom in one room including some lovely fellow writers to talk to in the breaks' A writer from our 2012 conference

External Events

How NOT To Submit Your Manuscript with York Literature Festival

It made me less scared and more optimistic about the next step. Thank you!’  Anne Woodward

‘Excellent, very informative and useful. It has given me extra enthusiasm to finish my manuscript for submission.’ Nadine Little

'Very insightful and enormously helpful. Agents were all very entertaining and informative. A great event.'  Helen Johnson

Guildford Literary Festival

'It has helped me considerably to refine my book and my approach to bringing it to market. Useful & delightful!' David Main

'Lots of information and valuable hints and tips. The Q&A session was very helpful and it was nice that the agents were clearly giving honest opinions.'  Kate Poels

Editorial Services


How Strong is Your Book Idea?

'The service gave me exactly what I needed. This report has given me renewed enthusiasm for my project, and plenty of thoughts to think about as to how I can improve and make the story better as a whole.' Jacob Collins

'This was fantastic feedback and exactly what I needed. The problems I knew I had were highlighted, and a few points I wasn't sure about were explained... my work is still in the first draft stage, having the book's idea described with words such as 'strong' and 'cracking' is an incredible boost. I cannot thank you enough.' Lin Churchill

'The service was very informative and helpful with constructive criticism.' Jack Carey

'Very useful and constructive.' Rachael Woods

'The report gave me invaluable feedback on what I need to work on to strengthen the idea'. Andrea Barker  

'I would recommend this service as it's coming from "people in the know" who are going to tell it like it is' Nikki Robinson

Beat the Rejection Clinic

'It was just what I needed! Very constructive.' Eva Stenborre

'The agent went above and beyond what I had expected. I came away inspired, enthused and more importantly...ready'. Freya Morris

'Jenny has a very genuine and supportive approach and I felt she was interested in my ideas.' Susan Rollinson

'...the reaction of an Agent was very useful, particularly in spotting a couple of flaws that I suspected, but - after several drafts - no longer had the enthusiasm to fix.' Sean Barker

'I had thought that agents were a bit like guillotines but rather less polite. Lucy was chatty, helpful, with a genuine interest in my work...and made many extraordinarily useful suggestions for my current book, as well as broad brush strokes which will help with future writing. Lucy clearly had looked at my 7000 words in considerable detail beforehand, making many notes on the margins....Satisfied, I left, resolved to plunge into an MS re-work, à la Lucy.' Alison Gardiner

'You will be at the top of the slush pile for thirty minutes of intensive discussion with an agent, and you will find out how (or if) you can bring your manuscript to a professional level. This is a great opportunity to be taken seriously.' Will Fraser

'Juliet was friendly, open and engaging. She provided practical guidance on how I could improve my MS and was very honest in her assessment of strengthening my story. She reviewed my cover letter and synopsis, providing written feedback which I took away. I left the session with more confidence and with a very clear idea of what I should change and what my next steps should be. I'd definitely recommend this session for anyone trying to get an agent.' Farheen Kahn

Opening Chapters

'The feedback I got on my children's story was very detailed and I am very grateful to the experts who read them. I felt a kindness towards me as a writer. which is very encouraging.' Fiona Cobb

'This service helped me with the key concerns I had about my writing and the discussion led to easier decision-making about the way forward. The report provided useful practical support and tips.' Marianne Marshall

Full Manuscript Review

'Penny’s feedback has taken my stories to a new level, which is precisely what I was looking for. She gently steered me to consider different options and gave me confidence to keep going. Not only are my stories much better now, but I have learned a lot from the experience and am more confident about approaching agents.' Mahrukh McDonald

'What a delightful editor and has a great sense of humor too... I have much work ahead but I am inspired. Her validation of my work is something I have waited to hear for a very long time.' Meagan Sheeler

'Your comments are very valuable and exactly what I needed if I'm to progress as a professional writer. I'm very grateful for your help, understanding and encouragement.' Virginia Bazlington

'It is the first objective professional feedback I have received on my work and has been invaluable in deciding which direction I should take next. I recommend it to anyone wondering about their next step!' Mark Rudd

'What a super person to talk to about my novel. Susan was informative and down to earth ... gave me the encouragement to submit to agents, which I have now done.' Margaret Swarts

Bespoke Mentoring

'I thought [Cressida’s] reports exemplary in their insight and helpfulness. I found the sharpness and constructiveness of her formal or aesthetic sense remarkable, and particularly helpful.' Matt Jordan

'Susan edited my manuscript precisely and with love. I fully trusted her with my characters and their story because I knew she cared about them just as much as I did. Thank you Susan for pulling my manuscript towards promise.' Helen Hudson

'I was most impressed by Cressi’s ability to swiftly grasp what the plot and characters needed. Cressi helped me gain confidence as a writer; she treated me like an authentic novelist and gave validation to my writing. She handled my work with encouragement and professionalism.' Liz Chettur

'It was very useful to work with Penny Walker. Her intelligent feedback was gold for me. Thank you Penny!'  Teresa Viarengo


We are keen to hear from any user of this website. Please send us an email with all your feedback, suggestions and questions.