We’re pleased to announce the mentors for this year’s Escalator Talent Development Scheme, who will form part of the judging panel for entries and will also offer practical advice and creative feedback to selected writers over the ten-month period.
Megan Bradbury was born in the United States and grew up in Britain. She studied at the University of East Anglia, graduating with an MA in Creative Writing in 2005. In 2012 she was awarded the Charles Pick Fellowship at UEA, and in 2013 she won an Escalator Literature Award and a Grant for the Arts to help fund the completion of her first novel, Everyone is Watching. The novel tells the story of New York City through the geniuses that have inhabited it – among them, Walt Whitman, Robert Moses, Robert Mapplethorpe, and Edmund White. It was published by Picador in summer 2016. Twitter
Michael Donkor studied English at Wadham College, Oxford, undertook a Masters in Creative Writing at Royal Holloway and now teaches English Literature at St Paul’s Girls’ School in London. The Observer named him as one of 2018’s best debut authors for his first novel Hold (4th Estate). This year he was longlisted for the International Dylan Thomas Prize and shortlisted for the Desmond Elliott Prize. Twitter
Yvvette Edwards is a British East Londoner of Montserratian origin and author of two novels, A Cupboard Full of Coats and The Mother. Her short stories have been published in anthologies and broadcast on radio. Her work has been nominated for a number of literary awards including the Booker Prize. She is particularly interested in writing that challenges the single narrative, giving voice to characters who are absent or under-represented in contemporary fiction. Yvvette was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 2020.
Owen Nicholls is a screenwriter with a Masters in Scriptwriting from the UEA. His first screenplay – a biopic of the filmmakers Powell and Pressburger – was optioned to Bedlam Productions, the BAFTA and Academy Award-winning producers of The King’s Speech. His debut novel, Love, Unscripted, was published in August 2019 by Headline.
Kate Worsley was born in Lancashire and has a BA in English Literature from University College London and an MA in Creative Writing from City, University of London. Her first novel She Rises won the HWA Debut Crown and the New Angle Prize for Literature and was shortlisted for the Lambda Literary Prize for Lesbian Fiction. In 2012 she won an Escalator Literature Award and subsequently received a Grant for the Arts to help fund the completion of her second novel. She was RLF Writing Fellow at the University of Essex from 2014 to 2017 and has been a visiting lecturer in creative writing at City, University of London since 2015.
Diran Adebayo, Tahmina Anam, Sally Cline, Natasha Cooper, Jill Dawson, Yvvette Edwards, Bernardine Evaristo, Midge Gillies, Danny Hahn, Shelley Harris, Tobias Hill, Joanna Hines, Kerry Hudson, Benjamin Johncock, Anjali Joseph, Gillian McClure, Katherine McMahon, Courttia Newland, Alex Preston, Kate Pullinger, David Rain, Ross Raisin, Cathy Rentzenbrink, Amy Sackville, Guy Saville, Nikesh Shukla, Michelle Spring, Cathi Unsworth, Hayley Webster.