I have been a freelance writer and editor for more than ten years, taking on roles from magazine chief to press agent, editorial director to obituarist. Most of my work now involves working closely with authors to write, shape and edit novels, non-fiction books and academic texts. I also advise corporate clients, from luxury brands to start ups, with editorial and communications strategies.
My debut novel, The Book of Keys, will be published in 2021 by HarperCollins, following a rather unusual chain of events. My agent is Jenny Hewson at Rogers, Coleridge & White.
I have been lucky enough to turn my obsession with Virginia Woolf and the Bloomsbury Group into ongoing work at Charleston as Reader in Residence, running workshops, reading groups and events including a live marathon read of Orlando with Jeanette Winterson in 2018.
I have been part of the Small Wonder short story festival for several years and I also teach on the Creative Writing Programme in Brighton. In 2016, I set up Lewes Short Story Club with a free monthly reading club and regular writing workshops and events.
The five things that underpin everything I do. . .
C U R I O S I T Y
A lot gets said about voice and engagement, but for me it all comes down to curiosity – simply sparking people's interest in an interesting way. It's my job to midwife other people's curiosity, reinvigorating their interest in their own business or book or project, giving them space to rediscover the love that inspired them to create something in the first place. I could find something curious on a wall of wet paint. There's no such thing as a boring project.
C O N N E C T I O N
All of my work is about connection. The right words connect people, ideas, audiences and aspirations. They connect eyes and ears to minds and emotions. Sometimes it's about connecting you back to the person you wanted to be. My career to date has been built on connecting; I went ten years without a website, getting all my jobs through meeting people face-to-face or being referred via word of mouth. Good things come through rich and fruitful connections.
C O L L A B O R A T I O N
I work closely with commissioners, designers, art directors, editors, writers, publishers and businesses to share insights and resources to achieve the best outcome for the project. A fan of skill swaps and bartering, I have edited books in exchange for beekeeping lessons and swapped copy for photography shoots.
C O M P A S S I O N
That's what it's all about, isn't it? One of my favourite words. Compassion: 'to suffer with', 'to love together with'. When I start working with you, it's about listening to where you are now, understanding where you want to be, and intuiting together how to get there. Call me sentimental, but compassion has got to be at the core of that.
Q U I R K
I often get given projects no one knows what to do with. Ones you can't label or even describe; ones that require multiple hats or a range of approaches. I like the weird tricky projects left on the shelf. Does your project fit that category? Let's meet up for tea.