NEWS New Faces


There have been a host of new volunteer recruits across SCBWI British Isles. This month, we welcome Sian Mole and Lindsey Scott, the new Network Organisers for Central East region.


Sian Mole


I first heard about SCBWI when I moved to the San Francisco Bay Area with my husband, two small children and no work permit of my own. I had always wanted to write and was determined to have something for myself. This was my opportunity. After searching for children’s writing organisations, it seemed that SCBWI was exactly what I needed, so I joined up and have never looked back.


Our move to America was only meant to be for two years but we ended up staying 10. During that time, a lot of things came and went. We got our green cards, and I tried my hand at everything from being a relocation consultant to an advert reviewer for Google, but nothing seemed to stick apart from my writing.


Through SCBWI I met a fabulous critique group and went on many conferences and retreats. For these I travelled to places like Muir Woods and wrote among the Redwood trees, and Big Sur where the Pacific Ocean was our inspiration. Northern California is one of the most beautiful places on earth in my opinion and I was very lucky.


Sian Mole

I truly believe nothing beats a good picture book, and started off writing them. After a couple of years, I started writing MG horror fiction. I love a good scare but nothing that will give me nightmares. I seem to follow my children’s ages with my writing. They are now 13 and 15, so maybe it’s time to try my hand at YA.


In 2016, I had a picture book published by a small independent publisher. They are sadly no more and therefore the book didn’t sell more than a few copies (plus what I sold to family and friends!). However, it gave me a small taste of what it’s like to be published, and holding a book you have written in your hands is always fun.


Life itself has been a bit of a roller coaster recently as we decided to move back home to the UK in September 2020 (my advice – never move countries during a pandemic, it’s quite stressful!). But the one thing I knew I had to do, was to join British Isles SCBWI. When I saw they were looking for a Network Organiser for my area, I thought – why not? And here I am.


I’m looking forward to being more involved in the organisation, especially as things are opening up again. I’m also looking forward to working with my Central East partner in crime, Lindsey. We’ve had many online chats and we’re planning to meet properly at the University of Suffolk Writing Great Middle Grade Fiction event on May 21st. We hope to see some of you there.


Lindsey Scott


I’ve always loved writing. It’s been a big part of my life ever since my school days, although I didn’t study creative writing at college. Instead, I studied English literature at my little seaside town in Norfolk, then I went off to the midlands to complete a BA in English and a Masters in Film and Fiction.


I enjoyed my academic writing so much, that after a few months of working in various supporting roles at the British Psychological Society, I applied for a bursary to complete a PhD at the University of Liverpool. I got the funding, so off I went to write my 100,000-word thesis. It was an adventure, and I learned a lot about myself and my passions.


After studying, I worked as a copywriter, providing copy on everything from wedding services to bank loans, even portable appliance testing. I also worked as a waitress for an events company. I ran pop-up coffee stands in Monte Carlo and Berlin. I worked long days and always smelled of cooking oil, but I had so much fun.


Lindsey Scott

Then I started my work as a university lecturer. I come from a whole family of teachers and I’ve now been teaching English literature in universities for 17 years. I run critical and creative modules in YA and children’s literature at the University of Suffolk, which is just incredible, as it means I’ve returned home to East Anglia and my life beside the sea.


I like to think I’m making a small difference to the lives of my students. Their writing and enthusiasm inspire me every day and I’m still writing alongside them. I’ve published academically and I’ve written a few short stories, but I’d love to work on a children’s book. I really enjoy middle grade fiction, especially funny stories and anything scary.


Joining SCBWI has been such an inspiration. When the post for Central East Network Organiser came up, I knew I had to go for it. Working with Sian is so much fun and we’re both really excited to have the opportunity to support writers and illustrators in our local counties. Thank you very much, SCBWI.

*Header image by Tita Berredo


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