London Professional Series - Making a Living as a Writer


This the first of our SCBWI event write ups for Making a Living as a Writer  that took place on March 21st 2013. It will give you a flavour of SCBWI events rather than a blow by blow account because we feel that wouldn’t be fair to those who have paid to come along. 

We do hope you’ll see what a friendly bunch we are, decide to join SCBWI and sign up for other similar events, either in London, the North or other venues around our networks. Here’s Sally Poyton , the event organiser.

Making a Living as a Writer doesn’t happen by chance. Adding it to the time we have to take to actually write, it’s really a job in itself. So it was really helpful to listen to two industry professionals who kindly shared with us their experiences.  

This was the second Professional Series Event at the new venue in St. James, Piccadilly. The event itself was a great success and very interesting. The panellists Lorna Fergusson and Jane Clarke were very knowledgeable, funny and inspiring, and yet still painted a realistic picture.

Some of the topics covered were – Where do you find work? How do you fit in your writing with your other jobs? How long did it take you to start making enough money to support yourself? How do you deal with school visits, general events and talks?
They were also very generous. Jane in particular shared a breakdown of her earnings from 2012 which was very helpful, and demonstrated exactly how imperative it is to diversify.

 how imperative it is to diversify.
Hot water flasks were available in the room and people were able to make themselves a cuppa and stay behind for a nice relaxing chat afterwards. 
There was also something new, a social/write-in from 4pm at the big Costa's next door. About half-a-dozen of us, plus the two speakers  had a good chin wag and managed to grab some supper before things got underway at seven.
We thank both Jane and Lorna, for their fascinating and very generous insight into their writing lives and for their honest responses. It was very helpful and gave us much to think about!
The next London Professional Series Event is an Undiscovered Voices panel on Tuesday April 23rd.
I hope to see you there. 

If you'd like to know more about this or any other of our events why not leave us a question in the comments.


  1. Thank You Sally, this is the delicious flavour of a SCBWI event - informative friendly, fun, plus fringe activities!
    Thank you for organising and hosting the pro series in the first place and being so good at multitasking, writing it up too!

  2. HI Jan, 'The Making a Living as A Writer' was a very interesting event to read more check out Caroline Hooton's excellent write-up...

  3. Thanks Sally for this, it was a shame that I couldn't make it on a Wednesday. I'm looking forward to the next meeting focussing on Undiscovered Voices later this month, we've got a great panel lined up!


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