Writer resources

We’re here to help…

We know it isn’t always easy to find support and advice as a writer, so we’ve put together this handy resources page. We’d love to hear from you if you find anything particularly helpful, or if you have a suggestion of a resource to add!

Jump to:
UK-wide organisations
Regional networks
Libraries and bookshops

UK-wide organisations

There are lots of national networks, creative hubs and other organisations that offer support and advice about writing for children and/or recommendations of inclusive books.

The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) is a vibrant community that supports writers, illustrators and translators at all stages of their career. The British Isles region offers professional development, networking and marketing opportunities, masterclasses, webinars, retreats, conferences, critique groups, awards, competitions and numerous publications.

The Royal Society of Literature honours authors through admission to its Fellowship, offers literary prizes to support authors at all stages of their careers, and runs outreach programmes to introduce writers to readers in schools, prisons and community settings. Membership is just £60 a year, and join by end May 2024 to get your second year free. You’ll get:

  • FREE entry to all RSL events (in person and online)
  • Discounted entry for friends and family
  • A subscription to Review, the RSL magazine
  • Access to special member-only content online
  • A place in the ballot for tickets to the RSL summer party!

Letterbox Library is a not-for-profit online children’s booksellers specialising in inclusive children’s books. For over 40 years they have been selecting and sourcing books in which all children can see themselves and which reflect our world community in all of its diversity. The quality of the texts are paramount. Uniquely, they use a team of independent volunteer reviewers (which includes teachers, librarians and social workers) to help in their book selection. Only 35% of books get through Letterbox Library’s rigorous selection process! Letterbox Library’s key buyers are primary schools, libraries and early years settings. You can buy any of their books online at www.letterboxlibrary.com. Their website lists a number of book packs specially curated for EY, KS1 and KS2 including Families, Black History, Disabilities and UK Creators of Colour. Letterbox Library also runs the Little Rebels Award for Radical Children’s Fiction alongside Housmans Bookshop on behalf of the Alliance of Radical Booksellers. Follow them on socials @LetterboxLib

Megaphone Writers CIC provides development for people of colour in England who want to write for children and teenagers. It was started by Leila Rasheed, a children’s author and creative writing tutor, in 2015, and became Megaphone Writers CIC in 2020. Their ultimate aim is to change bookshelves so every child can see themselves in stories. They do this by empowering people of colour to write the stories that matter to them, through a range of opportunities, especially 1-1 mentoring. Their former mentees include Danielle Jawando, Maisie Chan, Joyce Efia Harmer and Nazima Pathan. 

Inclusive Books for Children  (IBC) is a charity with a free website for families that helps them easily choose books for a more inclusive bookshelf. They showcase stories that represent all types of family and don't draw on gender stereotypes or negative tropes. They feature books with a variety of ethnicities, positive images of disabilities and different identities, and celebrate Own-Voice authors and illustrators. The IBC website runs in parallel with their provision of funding to other not-for-profit organisations also working to improve inclusivity in children’s books, and access to those books.

Pen to Print is a not for profit library organisation, based in the United Kingdom, established by the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham (LBBD) Libraries in 2014. They believe everybody should have a chance to tell their story and aim to build a network of expertise and support for aspiring writers in Barking and Dagenham and sharing this with a wider national and international community. Pen to Print provides a safe, collaborative environment that attracts and supports a network of diverse writers and genres. By learning to develop their authentic voices, aspiring writers are encouraged to reach communities with their stories reflecting not just their own journeys but also inspiring potential in others.

National Centre for Writing is a contemporary literature house in the heart of England’s first UNESCO City of Literature, committed to the transformative power of stories for personal, social and community development. Rooted in Norwich and open to the world, they’re a writing development agency with a local, national and international footprint. Their year-round programme offers opportunities to connect, learn and be inspired through innovative collaborations, events, festivals, residencies and activities for writers, literary translators and readers. From in person and online events at their Literature House to digital explorations and commissions in The Writing Hub, and in projects that support new voices and new stories, they help create ways to respond to the rapidly changing world of writing.

BookTrust Represents

Out on the Page

Disability Arts Online

Shape Arts

Scottish BAME Writers Network

Megaphone

WriteMentor

Black Writers Guild

Bubble Tea Writers

Regional networks

Regional writing agencies offer a wealth of support to writers, which is not necessarily limited to people in their area, especially their online events – so it’s worth checking out all of them!

Scottish Book Trust

Literature Wales

Writing East Midlands

Writing West Midlands

New Writing North

New Writing South

Literature Works (south-west England)

Creative Scotland

Commonword (Manchester)

Spread the Word (London)

Libraries and bookshops

It’s a great idea to read books for the age range and the genre you are writing in, so you can understand what works for your readership. Head to your local library and/or bookshop to check out recent published books, and don’t be afraid to ask the librarian/bookseller for advice. They’re a friendly bunch and will want to help!