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Prize Women: Editor and Storyteller – A Panel Discussion

20 June 2023 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm


Book with ticket: £18.99

Entry only: £7

Tickets available here

Join us to hear author Caroline Lea in conversation with Jillian Taylor (Senior Commissioning Editor) at Penguin’s Michael Joseph imprint, chaired by bookseller and illustrator, Tamsin Rosewell. There will be time for questions from the audience and Caroline will be signing books in the foyer after the event too.


Caroline Lea’s novels have long been some our best-sellers, and they have inspired some of our most dramatic window displays too. With a focus on author Caroline Lea’s latest novel, Prize Women, the discussion will look at the relationship between author and editor: how does an editor guide an already masterly storyteller? What kind of discussions about plot, language and structure happen during the editorial process? How much can a book change from first draft to final, with the input and expertise of an editor?


Caroline Lea grew up on the island of Jersey and gained a First from Warwick University, where she later become a tutor in Creative Writing. Her fiction and poetry have been shortlisted for the Bridport Prize, while her debut novel, The Glass Woman –a gothic thriller set during the Icelandic witch trials – was shortlisted for the Historical Writers Association Debut Crown Award. Her next novel, The Metal Heart – a powerful Second World War love story set on the island of Orkney – was selected as a Waterstones Scottish Book of the Month. Prize Women, her latest novel, is inspired by film footage Caroline found, showing the women who took part in the Great Stork Derby. Caroline was immediately struck by the awful implications of a competition which made women compete to have children, and by the fact that such a shocking story had remained buried for so long.


Jillian Taylor is Publisher for Fiction and Non-fiction at Penguin Michael Joseph, an imprint of Penguin Random House. Jillian started her career in academia, as a medievalist, before moving into publishing a decade ago. She has worked with authors ranging from Anthony Beevor to the late John lé Carre, and currently divides her list between novelists and narrative non-fiction authors and historians. She has edited many Sunday Times bestsellers, Richard & Judy selections and Waterstones Books of the Month. Authors she has worked with have won or been finalists for: the Man Booker Prize, Women’s Prize, Wolfson History Prize, Welcome Book Prize, Baillie Gifford Prize, Dylan Thomas Prize, Costa Book Awards (sadly defunct) and the Rathbones Folio Prize. Jillian’s list includes Stephen Fry’s Mythos, Joanne Paul’s The House of Dudley, Jack Cornish’s The Lost Paths, Dawn French’s Because of You, Caroline Lea’s Prize Woman and Costanza Casati’s Clytemnestra.


Tamsin Rosewell has been a bookseller for over 15 years, and also works as an illustrator – the original art for her book cover designs has been on display at Waterstones as well as in indie bookshops and during festivals. Most recently she has been working with twice Carnegie-winning author, Berlie Doherty, to re-cover new novels and the reissues of much older, award-winning titles. When she’s not covered in ink, she works at 55-year-old independent bookshop, Kenilworth Books. She is also known as a radio broadcaster and documentary writer, with a three-part series’ about artist and visionary William Blake, and also a series about the history of the apocalypse: The Idea of the End. She is a Trustee of The Blake Society.

Tickets available here

Event in collaboration with Kenilworth Literary Society. As well as being our 55th birthday, this year is also the 50th anniversary of the Kenilworth Literary Society, so for some of our events we will be joining forces with them, to bring even more bookish power to Kenilworth!


20 June 2023
6:30 pm - 8:30 pm


Priory Theatre
Rosemary Hill
Kenilworth, CV8 1BN United Kingdom
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