Choose your mentor
Our experienced mentors are able to offer feedback and advice on the fine detail of your work as well as the bigger picture of your life as a writer. They each specialise in particular forms of writing – find out more and book your session(s) below.
Each mentoring slot runs for 60 minutes. Any work submitted must be done so digitally – hard copies by post cannot be accepted.
Sessions are £95.00 each.
Book three sessions with the same mentor together in a single transaction to receive a 10% discount – discount will be automatically added to your basket or call 01603 877177 to arrange.
Scriptwriting for TV, film, radio
Sarah is an experienced writer, script editor and consultant for TV, film and radio. Specialising in comedy, drama and horror, her credits include work for BBC Radio 4, Sky, Aardman Animations, Film4, Audible, the New Zealand Film Commission and Private Eye. Sarah is passionate about working with writers of all levels, particularly those lacking confidence or direction, helping them to develop their unique voice and gain a foothold in the industry. Whatever your level, a one-to-one mentoring session with Sarah will support you to develop your ideas and skills in writing for the exciting world of script and screen.
How it works
At least one week before your session with Sarah, you will send her an extract from your work in progress (up to 60 pages of script). During your one-hour session, you will discuss where you are with your writing journey, and Sarah will give you feedback on your sample of writing. Together you will identify your priorities, aims and obstacles, and make a plan for how to progress. For the time being, Sarah’s mentoring sessions are taking place online.
Following a twenty-year career as a TV reviewer and columnist for publications including The Guardian and The Sunday Times, Sarah Dempster moved into script editing in 2018. Since leaving journalism she has script edited and consulted on projects as disparate as a psychological horror film for the BFI, a children’s series for Aardman Animations and a martial arts and eschatology-based black comedy for the New Zealand Film Commission. She has also written jokes for award-winning BBC Radio 4 series and worked as script consultant on BAFTA-nominated comedy-drama Breeders (Sky), created by Simon Blackwell and Chris Addison and co-starring Martin Freeman and Daisy Haggard. In addition to her current work as a screenwriting coach she is a long-standing freelance contributor to Private Eye.
Sarah lives in Norfolk with her partner and daughter and is represented by Kate Haldane at PBJ.
Fiction, drama, creative non-fiction
Katri is an experienced writing coach who works with writers of fiction, drama and creative non-fiction. Whether you are a beginner finding your voice or a more experienced writer facing questions about motivation, craft and form, Katri’s focus is firmly on helping you to find clarity and progress with your writing project.
Katri’s sessions follow a coaching approach by asking you about your goals and following your lead according to the criteria you set: through a series of questions and suggestions, you will develop a conversation about your project and address the issues that are the most pressing.
How it works
For each session, you can send Katri up to 5,000 words, one week before you meet. Then during the one-hour session, Katri will give you feedback on your writing and discuss where you are with your work and where you want to be.
From March 2022, Katri will send you a personalised bullet point email immediately after the session outlining your strengths, specific techniques to work on and next steps.
What others have said
‘I have found Katri’s input through our mentoring sessions absolutely invaluable. Katri has a thorough knowledge of the arts sector. Her feedback is intelligent, sensitive and clear. She is an un-obtrusive and sympathetic listener, has the ability to cut through to the nub of an issue and set practical and achievable targets. I wish I’d come across her earlier in my career.’ – IB, Business Director, Art & Poetry Publisher
‘Katri is a kind of intellectual acupuncturist, helping me identify my writerly weak spots and my fears, keeping the pressure on any ‘blocks’ to help me mend and change; our regular ‘tune-ups’ guarantee that I don’t lapse into procrastination and self-doubt. More energy, more focus, more output – what more can a writer wish for?’ – EH, Novelist, Scriptwriter and Creative-Non Fiction
Born in France of an American mother and a Viennese father, Katri Skala has lived in the United States and across Europe. She has worked as a senior arts administrator, script editor, and literary editor in the field of new writing in Britain and the US for a range of organisations that include Channel Four, BBC, the Manhattan Theatre Club, the Arvon Foundation, the University of East Anglia, and the National Centre for Writing. She holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in literature and journalism from Vassar (in the US), Cardiff and the University of East Anglia. She has had published short stories and magazine features. A Perfect Mother is her first novel. She works as a mentor to writers in all genres and at all stages of their writing life. Website
Heidi Williamson is an award-winning poet and experienced tutor mentor for The Poetry School, National Centre for Writing and The Writing Coach. Her sessions are suitable for:
- Those new to poetry who would like a constructive and confidential reading of their work to identify strengths and challenges
- Poets looking to start publishing their work – whether in magazines, competitions, or self-published
- Those looking to move to the next stage in their writing – perhaps collating a pamphlet or collection, starting a next book or a new project
- Published poets looking for strategies to stretch themselves and their writing and take their work forwards
How it works
For each session, you can send Heidi 1 – 6 poems (not exceeding 240 lines in total) one week before you meet. Then during the one-hour session, Heidi will give you feedback on your writing and discuss where you are with your work and where you want to be. She will suggest writing exercises, give reading suggestions, point you towards online resources and support you can use to develop your work and yourself as a writer. Together you will plan small practical steps to give you strategies and confidence to move forward.
From March 2020, you can send Heidi up to 10 poems, not exceeding 300 lines in total.
What others have said
‘The session with Heidi was excellent. She is very at home with working in this way and I felt at ease and able to explore thoughts and ideas which felt quite tentative. Her observations about my poems were precise and astute and for each comment there was a suggestion for how I might proceed. It was a thoroughly happy and rewarding experience.’ – LH, Poet
‘I needed an outside, objective assessment of my writing from an experienced poet and that is exactly what I got. She seemed to grasp intuitively, exactly what I wanted to express. I have re-read the notes I made several times now. I found it invaluable and was still buzzing the next day. I wished I had done it sooner.’ – IS, Poet
Heidi Williamson’s first collection Electric Shadow (Bloodaxe, 2011) was a Poetry Book Society Recommendation and shortlisted for the Seamus Heaney Centre for Poetry Prize. The Print Museum (Bloodaxe, 2016) won the Book by the Cover Award and the East Anglian Book Award for Poetry. Heidi works with poets worldwide by Skype as a Poetry Surgeon for The Poetry Society, teaches for The Poetry School, and mentors writers through the National Centre for Writing, The Poetry School and The Writing Coach. She is the current Royal Literary Fund Fellow at the University of East Anglia. Website
Fiction, non-fiction, historical fiction and journalism
Kate is an experienced teacher and mentor whose speciality is long-form writing, whether fiction, non-fiction, or anywhere between the two, and in particular how to handle research, structure and setting. Whatever your level of experience, she aims to help you work out what it is you want to write, and how to write it as well as possible.
How it works
One week before your session with Kate, you will send her an extract from your work in progress (up to 5,000 words). During your one-hour session, you will discuss where you are with your writing journey, and she will help you to identify your priorities, aims and obstacles. She will give you feedback on your writing and together you will make a plan for how to progress. Kate is happy to meet you via Skype or Zoom, and eventually face-to-face, once sessions can resume.
What others have said
‘The sessions have been fantastic. I’d lost a lot of confidence and I’ve really been inspired by them. I’m looking forward to more.’ – Toolkit mentee 2021
‘I am blown away by the depth and sensitivity of your observations. I have learned so much from this time working with you. Thank you so much for the quality of your input. I feel like I have learned to tell a story in the process of writing it with you.‘ – Toolkit mentee 2020
‘Kate makes you feel like anything is possible with your writing.’ – Writers Company student 2019
‘Students respond to her obvious interest in them and what they are doing, and she has the knack of making them feel important and listened to.’ –Writing Project client 2018
‘Kate is an excellent teacher and has facilitated some fascinating discussions. She is clearly very knowledgeable but also allows the students to discuss their own understanding, interpretations and opinions. This has made for some really enjoyable classes.’ – City University MA student 2019
‘Kate Worsley does just what a great historical novelist should do: she inhabits her characters without strain, without fuss, but with obvious assurance, making them and their period feel utterly close and convincing. I can’t wait to see more of her fiction.’ –Sarah Waters, author of Booker-shortlisted ‘Fingersmith’ and ‘The Little Stranger’
Kate Worsley is an internationally published award-winning novelist and an experienced writing mentor and teacher, working mainly with writers of long-form fiction and non-fiction. She holds a BA in English Literature from UCL, an MA in Creative Writing from City, University of London and was RLF Literary Fellow at the University of Essex 2014-17. A visiting lecturer in creative writing at City since 2015, she also works with the Writers’ Company and the Writing Project. She holds an Introductory Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice, is an associate fellow of Advance HE and a member of the National Association of Writers in Education. Previously an editor and feature writer for national newspapers and magazines, she also published a non-fiction book PERSONAL SPACE (Conran Octopus, UK & Sweden). Her debut novel SHE RISES (Bloomsbury) won the New Angles Prize for Literature, the Historical Writers Association Debut Crown for New Historical Fiction and was a Lambda Literary Award finalist in the US. Her latest novel will be published by Headline’s literary imprint, Tinder Press, in April 2023. You can find out more about her here.
Creative non-fiction, including biography and memoir
Keiron offers constructive and friendly sessions for writers working on creative non-fiction projects, including memoir and biography, who would like help with developing their research techniques and improving their prose.
How it works
For each session, you can send Keiron an extract of your work in progress (up to 5,000 words) one week before you meet. Then during the one-hour session, Keiron will give you feedback on your writing.
As well as specific feedback, sessions will also cover general skills in interviewing and archival research, and how to hone your text at both the sentence and structural levels.
What others have said
‘Keiron is a warm, personable and astute mentor, who taught me a considerable amount as I wrote an educational manuscript. I have learnt much more than I expected with his assistance and skilful input. I am delighted to be able to recommend him highly.’ – B.W., Essex
Keiron Pim’s book Jumpin’ Jack Flash: David Litvinoff and the Rock’n’Roll Underworld (Jonathan Cape), was hailed as ‘the best debut’ biography of 2016 by Kathryn Hughes in her end of year round-up in the Guardian and as a Book of the Year by The Times. It was longlisted for the Gordon Burn Prize, shortlisted in the Wales Book of the Year Awards’ category for Creative Non-Fiction and won the Biography and Memoir category at the 2016 East Anglian Book Awards. Before that Keiron wrote The Bumper Book of Dinosaurs, and edited and introduced Into the Light: the Medieval Hebrew Poetry of Meir of Norwich (East Publishing, 2013), collaborating with the National Centre for Writing to publish this significant poet’s complete works in translation for the first time.
Keiron spent 13 years at the Eastern Daily Press. Since leaving in 2013 he has written for the Guardian, the Daily Telegraph and the Spectator. Alongside his writing, Keiron works as a proofreader, an editor and a mentor to aspiring non-fiction authors. He is married with three daughters and lives in Norwich. He is represented by Matthew Hamilton at Aitken Alexander Associates. Website
Memoir, playwriting, scriptwriting
Lucy is an award-winning writer across different forms and genres, including poetry, fiction, memoir, TV, film, theatre and opera. She has been commissioned by the likes of Glyndebourne, Channel 4 and the BBC, and her books are published in the UK by Faber and Penguin. Lucy is passionate about helping writers find the way to tell their stories, whether they’re destined for the page, stage or screen. Whatever your level, a one-to-one mentoring session with Lucy will support you to develop your ideas and skills in writing your memoir, play, TV or film script.
How it works
At least one week before your session with Lucy, you will send her an extract from your work in progress (up to 3000 words for your play or memoir and up to 30 pages for your film or TV script). During your one-hour session, you will discuss where you are with your writing journey, and Lucy will give you feedback on your sample of writing. Together you will identify your priorities, aims and obstacles, and make a plan for how to progress. Lucy’s sessions will take place remotely, over Zoom (or similar).
From March 2022, Lucy will offer a personalised follow-up email to help students move forward with their writing project. Additional resources to writers at the beginning of the memoir journey or script development will also be available.
Lucy Wadham is a novelist, poet, non-fiction author, screenwriter, playwright and former journalist who lives between France and the UK. Lucy’s books include the best-selling The Secret Life of France and Lost, a novel that was shortlisted for the CWA Golden Dagger Award. Fold (Pindrop Press), her first book of poems, was shortlisted for the Seamus Heaney First Poetry Collection Prize in 2020. In 2015, Lucy’s first play, Parfaite, won the Prix des Spectateurs at the Paris des Femmes Festival and her TV script, loosely based on Heads and Straights, her memoir about growing up on the Kings Road in the punk era, and co-authored with her sister, won the The C21 Drama Series Script Competition. Lucy has written for opera and has several TV Dramas in development. She is published in the UK by Faber and Penguin and is represented by The Agency for her Film, Television, Theatre and Opera work.