Mentoring

  • COVID 19 UPDATE – I don’t want to change the text on this page, because I fervently hope we will be back to normal before too long, but I just wanted to make clear that in the meantime, I’m still offering my critique and mentoring services, although all tutorials will now be through Zoom, Skype, or over the telephone.

is mentoring Right for me?

Mentoring could be for you if you’re working on a novel, short story collection, or portfolio of work for an application to a writing MA. A mentoring package might also be appropriate for someone who is unable to attend a regular writing course but feels they would benefit from working to deadlines and receiving detailed and honest feedback.

how does it work?

Mentoring offers one-to-one support and encouragement while you’re working on the early draft of a longer piece of work.  In addition to providing constructive feedback, I can help with motivation, and offer advice on how to keep going when the going gets tough. If you decide to seek representation, I can also offer advice on how and when to approach agents, although please note that I cannot offer any assurances that you will be offered representation, or that your work will be published. Having traveled the long and difficult road to publication myself, I have picked up lots of tips along the way, and I will share everything I have learned in the hope that it might help you in your own quest for publication.

Ideally, we would meet face-to-face for feedback sessions at a mutually convenient location (I’m happy to travel, but may have to charge travel costs if outside Sheffield). If a face-to-face meeting is not possible, I can give feedback by phone and/or email.

Scroll down for testimonials.

what does it cost?

Full Mentoring package
Eight submissions of up to 10,000 words over a 12-15 month period. This can be flexible, though I would expect mentoring to conclude within eighteen months. A submission every six weeks tends to work well. I will provide detailed written comments along with notes and corrections on each submission.  This includes a face-to-face tutorial lasting around 45 minutes -1 hour, where we meet up over coffee at a mutually convenient place to go through your work and discuss any difficulties you’re having, either with the work itself, or with time management, motivation etc. This is an opportunity for you to ask questions and clarify things, and an opportunity for us to discuss your work in depth – this is often where new ideas spring up apparently from nowhere, so face-to-face meeting is definitely the recommended option. If meeting in person is not possible, you may prefer to opt for telephone or Skype tutorials.

Cost: £1920 for full mentoring package (includes eight feedback sessions)

Terms: £500 deposit on booking, balance due before third session.

Mini-mentoring package:
Four submissions of up to 7500 words over a 6 to 9-month period.
(Same service as above)

Cost: £960 for mini-mentoring package (includes four feedback sessions)

Terms: £250 deposit on booking, balance due before second session.

How to submit

For mentoring enquiries, please send an email telling me a little about you and the book you’re working on, together with an outline or synopsis and a sample of your work (around 15 to 20 double spaced pages would be fine). This will enable me to decide whether I am able to work with you on this particular project. There is no charge for this initial reading. I’ll get back to you as quickly as possible, usually within 7 to 10 days, to let you know whether I’m able to take on the work, and to arrange the first submission.

  • For info and prices for PROFESSIONAL  CRITIQUES, click  HERE

Testimonials

Working with Susan as a writing mentor has been like undertaking an esteemed advanced driving course. During our time together she has provided expert feedback, in such a way that all I want to do after every session is to get back on the road (laptop), taking all points on board, and keep persevering. Her skill, patience and professionalism has enabled me to complete the first draft of my very first novel. Her friendliness and approachability have encouraged me to explore different ideas and approaches, and I would recommend Susan’s mentoring to any aspiring writer. Julie Charlesworth

‘When I set out to write a novel I don’t think I knew quite what I was letting myself in for! Susan’s support, encouragement, and constructive advice was invaluable in helping me achieve my ambition to write a book. It may not be a Booker prizewinner but I’ve finished it and I couldn’t have done it without her. Susan is professional, enthusiastic, and even more important she is always friendly and approachable.’ Chris Hollis

“I was slightly nervous about individual mentoring as I thought the work involved for the monthly submission of up to 4,000 might be very intensive. However, I needn’t have worried as I thoroughly enjoyed my written projects as well as Susan’s no-nonsense feedback and in-depth written critiques. Not only was she able to identify my main weaknesses straightaway, she highlighted my strengths, and was full of positive suggestions and inspirational ideas on how I could improve my work. As a result of Susan’s mentoring I have won a runner’s up prize in a writing competition, gained a place on the MA Writing at Sheffield Hallam University and have written and polished approximately 25,000 words of a novel.” Paula Greenlees

“The useful comments helped me to improve my writing and your constant encouragement got me to the end of my novel.” Becca Linsford

“It was a choice between becoming a better writer and buying ten driving lessons. I still don’t have a licence; but I do have a finished novel.” Tom Sorsby

“Susan was my writing mentor when I was just starting to write my novel and her support, encouragement and expert guidance inspired me to keep going – it’s now finished so she must be good!” Kate Mitchell