162: Mentorship o’ Sass from author and journalist LISA CLARK

ITEM: Mentorship o’ Sass from awesome author and journalist LISA CLARK.

DETAILS: The Mentorship o’ Sass will involve hang time with Lisa via email or skype and questions and queries answered about the world of teen publishing/ book writing/journalism over a 6 month period.

BIO: I’m author of the Lola Love series of bravado-boosting books for teens, I’m a freelance journo-girl who writes for teen and womens titles both here and in the US and I’m creatrix of online lifestyle site:www.thesassyminx.com


161: Manuscript/submission package critique + mentoring by YA author KERIS STAINTON + signed books

ITEM: Manuscript and submission package critique by YA author Keris Stainton, plus signed copies of DELLA SAYS: OMG! and signed proof of JESSIE HEARTS NYC

DETAILS: I will read your YA manuscript (up to 60,000 words) and advise on plot, characterisation, setting and dialogue (nothing puts me off a book faster than bad dialogue). I will help you write a query letter, put together a synopsis and polish your first three chapters until they squeak.

BIO: Keris Stainton is a compulsive writer, voracious reader and obsessive tweeter. Her first YA novel DELLA SAYS: OMG! came out last year and has been shortlisted for Lancashire Book of the Year 2011. Her second, JESSIE HEARTS NYC, comes out in July and she’s hoping to get a trip to New York out of it…

160: So you want to write a book? – Coffee and cake in Soho, London with literary agent turned successful author ALISON BOND

ITEM: Literary agent turned successful author ALISON BOND will kickstart your writing dreams by discussing your idea, your time and formulating a plan of action so you have a completed draft of your novel in your hands within twelve months.  There will also be cake. (Alternative locations available by mutual consent.)

BIO: Alison Bond studied screenwriting at Bournemouth University and had several jobs in the film industry before becoming an agent at Casarotto Ramsay working with authors and selling film rights.  She is the author of four novels all published by Penguin books and has written for a handful of national newspapers and magazines.



Plus signed copies of The Greatest Guide to Freelance Writing, publication late 2011; Love to Write: A Schoolrun guide to helping your child in literacy (provisional title), publication due 2011.

DETAILS: As markets and budgets shrink, publications close and the future looks uncertain for print journalists, how can they adapt and flourish in an ever changing media landscape?

This one-day workshop offers concrete, straight-talking tips on maximising new income streams by finding and hanging on to new types of work.

This workshop is for you if:

* You want to know where to find new work

* You want to know how to increase your income from writing

* You want to know how to effectively market your skills

What’s covered?

The itinerary, to be confirmed, will include:

* Practical tips, advice and exercises on finding new markets

* Guidance on how to work with clients outside journalism, their
expectations of customer service and approach to business

* Advice on business systems and procedures to make sure you are
treated with the respect you deserve as a supplier of services

Usual cost: £150 plus VAT

About the trainers:

Linda Jones:

Managing director of Passionate Media, an agency that works on copywriting, PR, blogging, podcasting and other marketing support/editorial services for a range of customers. She is an established media trainer, working in-house and with individuals to help them maximise their commercial writing potential. She is also the author of The Greatest Freelance Writing Tips in the World, currently being expanded, updated and renamed for a new publisher.

Carol Garrington:

Carol Garrington is the award-winning marketing director at Passionate Media and oversees sales, business development and the financial aspects of the business. Carol offers realistic advice on contracts, dealing with clients, charging and getting paid. She also runs a flourishing network for businesswomen in the West Midlands, Wings and will give advice on where and how to meet potential customers.

UPDATED 74: Place on KICK START YOUR FREELANCE WRITING CAREER WORKSHOP with Linda Jones and Karen Pasquali Jones + signed books

ITEM: One place on KICK START YOUR FREELANCE WRITING CAREER workshop in Birmingham, Saturday 2 July. (Usual price £129 plus VAT.)

Plus signed copies of The Greatest Guide to Freelance Writing, publication late 2011; Love to Write: A Schoolrun guide to helping your child in literacy (provisional title), publication due 2011.

DETAILS: This workshop is for you if:

* You are considering launching a freelance journalism career

* You need realistic, straight-talking advice on whether this career is for

* You are new to freelancing and would like to add to lessons learned so

What’s covered:

* Practical information on setting up as a freelance: Getting started with
tax and other financial matters

* How to find ideas

* How to find work

* How to pitch editors

* How to keep editors coming back for more

* How to get paid on time

The itinerary will include practical exercises to highlight the skills, aptitude and determination needed to have any chance of making it in this most highly competitive of fields.

Leading UK journalist KAREN PASQUALI JONES will be there in the afternoon for delegates to try their hand at pitching. She is a ‘gate keeper’ to stories appearing in top selling magazines and papers and as you can see from her biography below, quite an expert. Karen will provide constructive feedback on pitches from delegates on the course based on advice/tips provided on the day.

BIO: Linda Jones is director of the Midlands-based editorial agency, Passionate Media. The multi award-winning business has built up since 2003 when Linda founded the company to expand her freelance writing career. Passionate Media now has a six-strong team including two more writers and a graphic designer. Linda’s freelance career started in her back bedroom in 1998 as she attempted to work around her twin daughters. She’s a former editor of the St Petersburg Press (Now St Petersburg Times) in Russia and a district news editor at the Wolverhampton Express & Star and Worcester Evening News.

Passionate Media has been running popular and respected workshops for journalists, PR and marketing professionals and aspiring freelance writers for two years. These include how to make more money as a freelance, writing skills and maximising the impact of social media. Linda’s modestly titled — but acclaimed — book, The Greatest Freelance Writing Tips in the World was published in 2007 and shares ‘hard lessons learned’ along the way. It’s now being updated and renamed under a deal with a new publisher to go on sale in late 2011.

Linda is also currently working on a book for parents of primary school children to help them love literacy. She was recently named as Most Inspirational Blogger in a UK parenting blog community’s awards and is also editor of the website Ready for Ten, published by Britvic and aimed at families with children aged six to nine. Linda blogs at www.freelancewritingtips.com, edits the family travel blog Have a Lovely Timeand shares stories of mental illness at Speaking Up, Breaking the Silence.

As a freelance contributor/agency director Linda has contributed to most UK national newspapers and best selling women’s magazines, arguably most notably with stories about getting big pants for Christmas and one entitled: “Mummy, why does that lady have a beard?”

BIO: Karen Pasquali Jones has 20 years experience in national newspapers and magazines. She began her career as a reporter with the news agency South West where she broke the ‘House of Horrors’ story and was one of the first journalist to expose the cracks in Charles and Diana’s marriage.

After working as a news reporter at Today and The People newspapers she joined Bauer, where she became Associate Editor to Janice Turner at that’s life!

In 2000, Janice took her as the Deputy Editor to help launch Real, the first bi-weekly glossy. In 2003 Karen became the Editor of Emap’s Mother & Baby magazine, where she boosted circulation by 12% and launched several high-profile consumer campaigns including the hugely successful Travel Safe campaign, calling for all children aged four and under to travel in properly fitted car seats.

In April 2004, she was headhunted by IPC to create a new women’s weekly magazine, Pick Me Up, one of the most successful magazine launches to date. After working as Contributing Editor at Closer, Karen was poached by News International to spearhead their real life magazine launch, Love it! which sold over 400,000 per issue. Karen now juggles caring for her two young children, stints acting as the deputy editor of the UK’s biggest-selling magazine, Sky – with over seven million readers – and writing features for the national newspapers and magazines. She is also a regular contributor to TV, radio and was called the country’s ‘leading real-life journalist’ when she took part in a Cutting Edge documentary on journalism earlier in the year.

60: One to one social media mentoring with Alison Norrington

ITEM: I am offering a 1:1 social media mentoring opportunity for an author. This includes a phone call/London meet up/Skype chat to determine authors current status on social media, their genre & audience, and how to engage readers through social networks.

DETAILS: I have run this as a workshop called The Digital Author for Harlequin Mills & Boon, Romance Writers of America and London Screenwriters Festival.

The mentoring session will take the form of a 4-5 page critique of current author presence online, a 1-2 hour chat and recommendations for reaching out to readers.

I blog about transmedia & social media at www.storycentraldigital.wordpress.com,tweet as @storycentral and am a best-selling chick lit novelist ‘Class Act’, ‘Look Before You Leap’ & ‘Three of a Kind’, a playwrite & journalist.

I am also conference chair for StoryWorld Conference & Expo 2011 this October in San Francisco.

56: Mentoring with author ELIZABETH SPELLER

ITEM: Half day face to face of mentoring in life-writing, poetry or novel writing or four email sessions and follow up.

DETAILS: I’m an author (travel, life-writing, history, novels, poetry) and a Royal Literary Fund fellow at Warwick University. Have taught Classics, English and Create Writing.

Divide life between Cotswolds and small island in Greece and am currently writing third novel-set on first day of the Somme. Work in a shepherd’s hut in an orchard!