Third group of mentees to take part since WriteNow was launched in 2016
Nine new writers, plus the scheme's first illustrator, have been invited to join Penguin Random House UK's year-long WriteNow mentoring programme; becoming the third group of mentees to take part since WriteNow was launched in 2016.
From deeply personal memoirs to fantastical stories featuring mermaids and monsters, this year's mentees' works span non-fiction, literary and commercial fiction, children's and picture books.
Over the next 12 months each writer will work closely with a Penguin Random House editor with expertise in their genre in order to develop their manuscript and get it ready for publication. This year's WriteNow mentee cohort also includes the first ever illustrator, with the programme casting its net more widely and opening to children's picture book illustrators for the first time this year. The illustrator will be matched with a designer who will support them in building up their portfolio of picture book artwork.
Siena Parker, head of creative responsibility, said: "When we launched WriteNow back in 2016 we didn't really know what to expect. We never imagined that three years on we would have six books in the pipeline from writers discovered through the scheme. It's been a total pleasure and privilege to work with so many exceptionally talented writers, and I can't wait to welcome ten new faces to our WriteNow family."
The 2018-2019 WriteNow mentees:
Alex Bertulis-Fernandes is 24 years old and lives in North West London. She is writing a nonfiction
Annie Kirby is 47 years old and lives in Portsmouth. She is writing literary fiction
Donna McLean is 46 years old and lives in Folkestone, Kent. She is writing a non-fiction memoir
Emmett de Monterey is 41 years old and lives in London. He is writing a non-fiction memoir
Gareth Peter Dicks is 37 years old and lives in Nottingham. He is writing children’s picture books
Laura Kay is 29 years old and lives in London. She is writing upmarket women’s fiction
Lauren Aitchison is 29 years old and lives in Garmouth, Scotland. She is writing a non-fiction
Lisette Auton is 37 years old and lives in Darlington, North-East England. She is writing children’s
Priya O’Shea is 33 years old and lives in Leicester. She is writing commercial women’s fiction
Sally Anderson is 39 years old and lives in Chesterfield. She is an illustrator
Pictured: Alex Bertulis-Fernandes