“Thank you for saying all the things that needed saying about my book! Nearly all of them were things I knew but was too close to the book to articulate: but some of them made me look at the whole thing in a new light.” Marion Leeper, UK
Depending on other commitments, I can sometimes offer to read a manuscript, or part of it, and provide a written report which covers characterization, structure, dialogue, setting, story-line, voice, language, and anything else relevant to the piece, along with detailed notes and editing suggestions on the manuscript or Word file. For advice on long projects, such as entire novels, it is often best to begin with several early chapters and a summary of the rest. This may be all that is needed. My aim is always to enable you to learn how to develop your own work, rather than do the work for you. A written format normally works best, but telephone consultation via Skype is also an option.
I do sometimes advise as to whether, when, and how to submit work to publishers, but I do not put you in touch with them direct, and, of course, cannot guarantee results.
“Kathy manages to be both enlightening and inspiring. She has a wonderful ability to go right to the heart of serious weaknesses in a piece of writing without being distracted by more superficial flaws, which, once you correct the underlying problem, will often disappear. She has a fine sense of structure and an excellent ‘bullshit detector’—an invaluable skill. I’d be lost without her feedback.” Vicky Grut, UK.
Please use the CONTACT for further information or to enquire about rates for mentoring or manuscript consultancy
“Two years ago when I started writing I told myself that I was doing it for myself. A release, I thought, the same way a girl writes in her diary: Dear Diary, I heart heart Steve, or Dear Diary, I hate my life. Writing was talking to a friend. I would get advice from my parents in Vancouver, my aunt in Halifax, my friend in Montana, and all my friends at home. Is it horrible? I would ask. You can be honest. Everything they told me was contradictory and inconsistent. Except for my mum, to her everything was beautiful. Adorable. Prodigious. What I needed was one person I trusted and respected. One editor that could be honest and tactful, professional and open minded. Because writing is so subjective three opinions was already too many. Kathy Page became that person. I let others read my work, but it is Kathy that I listen to. She never tries to change my style, (if I might be lucky enough to have a style), but rather encourages and shapes what I want to write. She encouraged me to enter the CBC Literary Awards, a contest I was not ready for, and with her help I was shortlisted twice.
When the magazine I wrote for replaced me with a new columnist, she believed I would find a better magazine. Which I did. It is because of Kathy that I feel as though I can write not just for myself, but for the world. Writing is something that should be created, loved, and then thrown into the hands of strangers to stand on its own. Thank you, Kathy.” Tik Maynard, Canada. As well as being shortlisted in the CBC awards, Tik was a winner in the Malahat Review contest 201. Read Tik in The Chronicle of The Horse.
Mentoring also involves comments and reports, but it is an ongoing commitment in which you work on a particular project, supported by my advice, for an agreed period of time. The exact nature of this is negotiated on an individual basis, but normally it involves deciding on an aim of some kind, and setting a regular deadline. For example, you might want to revise the first third of a novel, or to write a chapter, or draft short story, every month for six months. Along with a detailed response to your work in progress, mentoring can include responses to specific questions about writing and the writer’s life, and advice as to how to sustain and develop your vision and keep going long-term.
“I enjoyed working with Kathy — a great mentor. Her incredible sense of story and her ability to recognize the heart of a narrative helped me distill my material into work that I am proud of. Kathy transformed the revision process into something dynamic and exciting.” Michelle Glennie, Canada.
Please use the CONTACT for further information or to enquire about rates for mentoring or manuscript consultancy.
“Kathy never fails to understand exactly what I’m trying to do with my writing. She manages to explain in a clear and informative way exactly why and how it isn’t working (and also when it is) which leaves me armed and motivated to continue after every feedback session. Kathy critiques in such an open and positive way that I feel I’m working with an ally on my novel as opposed to a less personal tutor. I love being able to talk about my characters with somebody who knows them as well as I do. Top this with great value for money; I can’t imagine how I could have a better mentoring relationship than this.” Jackie Buxton, UK.
“Thank you again for doing this. I can’t tell you how helpful this process is for me, on more than one level. Your comments are clear and helpful. I’ve really appreciated how you get past the superficial things right to the bones of my stories. That’s exactly the help I need – thank you. And of course for critiquing things on the surface too, where it’s needed.” Rachel Muller, Canada. Rachel Muller’s short fiction has been published by Hitchcock Magazine, and her young adult novels When the Curtain Rises, Ten Thumb Sam and The Solstice Cup are published by Orca Press.
“Kathy is a gem – prepared to defend a point, but creative enough to work round an author’s vision. I recommend her highly.” Keith Lord, USA. Keith Lord’s fiction has appeared in Duck & Herring, and is forthcoming in Dark Sky. He has completed a novel, Bank Street.
“Kathy Page’s questions open doors of discovery, making it possible to explore, invent, and create, in ways the solitary process rarely invites. Without her fine eye for line editing, ear for dialogue, and deep understanding of the importance of story, I would not have had the courage to experiment with points of view and structure. Her deep commitment to my writing made it impossible for me to give up. She is a mentor without an ego, whose criticisms, generous in detail and scope, make one want to strive for greatness.” Renate Mohr, Canada. Renate’s short fiction has appeared in The Antigonish Review and Room of One’s Own. She is completing a novel.
“I’ve relied on Kathy Page’s analytical and critical judgement for many years now. She manages to be both enlightening and inspiring. She has a wonderful ability to go right to the heart of serious weaknesses in a piece of writing without being distracted by more superficial flaws, which, once you correct the underlying problem, will often disappear. She has a fine sense of structure and an excellent “bullshit detector”—an invaluable skill. I’d be lost without her feedback.” Vicky Grut, UK. Vicky Grut’s short stories have appeared in magazines and collections including Random Factor (Pulp Books, 1997), Reshape Whilst Damp (Serpent’s Tail, 2000), Valentine’s Day: Stories of Revenge (Duckworth, 2000) and Volumes 13 and 14 of the British Council’s anthology New Writing. Awards for short fiction include the Asham and Ian St James prizes in 1999 and the Chapter One International Short story prize in 2006. Her novel, Understudy, is with a literary agent.