Happy Birthday to us!

The Literary Consultancy turns 25

Inspired by the fact that TLC was started at the kitchen table of Rebecca Swift, we have created a digital ‘kitchen table’ to celebrate a quarter century of supporting writers and the literary community. We’d really love to take this moment to invite you to pop a message onto our kitchen table.

Please feel free to be as creative as you like: poems, postcards, doodles and videos are all welcome!

Send us a card

Your cards and messages

My journey with TLC has been one of adventure, development and achievement. They have also been the most supportive. Without question TLC – beginning with mentoring from Becky Swift – revolutionised my life as a writer. Not only have I learnt to value my own work through them, but they have opened significant pathways to the exposure and understanding of untold diverse stories – including, at last, the disability story.

Penny Pepper

TLC was founded with a generous, inclusive and ethically-driven view of how our publishing industries might better support, represent and serve writers and readers alike. It has pursued that vision unwaveringly over its 25 year history and has created real change and positive impact in its wake. As partners, NCW is proud to have been part of that journey and we’re looking forward to being part of the next chapter in TLC’s story.

Chris Gribble, CEO, National Centre for Writing

I first met Becky Swift in the cafe at the British Library where she ‘interviewed’ me for a role as a reader for TLC. This was in 1999 and I had just got my first publishing contract with Faber, for The Red Dancer, my fictional biography of Mata Hari. I went on to read for TLC for a bit more than 10 years, writing hundreds of reports. It was my only source of income for a long time; I will always be grateful for the break TLC gave me. Not only that, but Bex and I became close friends, travelling together to do various literature events both within the UK and abroad. After I stopped reading for TLC, we used to meet for dinner every few months, meals that were always full of laughter and very frank discussion. Becky was someone I confided in and trusted implicitly and there isn’t a day that goes by when I don’t think about her terrible jokes and her love of musicals.

Richard Skinner, Faber Academy

It was such a pleasure to be part of the TLC journey and to see first-hand the difference they make to writers. It’s an excellent team under excellent leadership with Aki Schilz and exciting to not only celebrate the past but also, to look ahead to the next 25 years.

Crystal Mahey-Morgan, OWN IT!

I treasure the manuscript assessment which TLC did for my Viking novel RAVEN: Blood Eye back in 2005. Nine pages detailing what my manuscript lacked and how I could improve it, which was worth more to me than any creative writing course. I drank up that precious advice like mead, and just over a year later Transworld signed the RAVEN trilogy. When you’re starting out it’s as though there’s some magic key to the publishing door that others know about, but you don’t. A good agent helps, so too an editor/publisher who can see the value in your work. But it all starts with the manuscript. TLC was my magic key.

Giles Kristian

My writing journey skyrocketed after I won the TLC Pen Factor Writing Competition in 2019, as it was through this Godsent opportunity that I met my agent. Since then, Aki, Joe and Nelima have been great champions of my upcoming debut Yinka, Where is your huzband? I am so thankful to TLC. I wouldn’t be where I am today without them.

Lizzie Damilola Blackburn

A very Happy 25th Birthday to TLC! A quarter century of championing writers, building connections and supporting new voices. Such a priviledge and joy to be a small part of it – here’s a picture of me at my desk as an intern 6 years ago, when TLC was still a teenager! Xxx

Joe Sedgwick (TLC)

Massive congratulations on reaching the age of 25. Here’s to the next 25 years!

Simon and all at Bookswarm

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