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Elizabeth Lee author

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Author

Hello, thank you for visiting my website! Here's a little bit of information about me.

I was born in London but grew up in a tiny village, where I spent most of the time with my nose in a book - anything from Enid Blyton to Shakespeare, I would read it all! I now live in Warwickshire with my teenage children, and haven't lost my love of books.

I've been writing for a number of years and my work has been selected for the Womentoring Project and Penguin's WriteNow Live. In 2018 I was awarded the Marian Keyes Scholarship to study on Curtis Brown Creative's novel writing course, an incredible opportunity that I will always be grateful for.

Cunning Women is my debut novel, written between working two jobs and parenting two teens. Set in 17th Century Lancashire, it is the story of Sarah, her struggle against poverty and prejudice, and her defiant hope for a better life.

Books

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Cunning Women

When it is no longer safe to be a witch, they call themselves cunning.

Seventeenth-century Lancashire is a dark and mistrustful place. Ten years after the notorious Pendle witch trials saw ten accused witches hanged, young Sarah Haworth and her family live as outcasts in a ruined hamlet. The inhabitants of the nearby village despise 'cunning folk' like them, but their services - healing balms, herbal remedies - will always be in demand, and they have a way of coming to know all the village's secrets.

A chance meeting sees Sarah become acquainted with Daniel, a young man from the village. In him, she sees a clever, caring man; in her, he sees not the strange, dirty outcast he knows he should, but rather the strong young woman coming into her own.

As they are drawn closer together, a new magistrate arrives in the area to investigate a spate of strange deaths befalling the villagers. Inevitably, his eye falls on Sarah's family, and his hand carries a burning torch. In the face of persecution, something as fragile as love seems impossible...

Buy here:

Cunning Women by Elizabeth Lee | Waterstones

ONE OF GRAZIA'S BEST BOOKS OF 2021

'[A] powerful story of forbidden love ... a tense and atmospheric ride' Daily Mail

'With a painfully unexpected ending, this is a story about loneliness, connection and female rage that fans of intensely atmospheric historical fiction will love.' Stylist

'Witches and the dread they inspired are captured here with chilling deftness.' Woman and Home

'Timely in its depiction of hysteria and persecution, and beautifully evokes a historical period poised between dark ignorance and long-overdue enlightenment.' Observer

'A thrilling read. But, beyond the thrill, is the beauty of the language . . . A pleasure to read - with an undercurrent of genuine fear' Annie Garthwaite, author of Cecily

Critiques

My debut novel, Cunning Women, was published by Penguin in 2021 and I am represented by Lucy Morris at Curtis Brown. I have many years’ experience offering detailed feedback on other writers’ work, through courses, writing groups and mentoring projects. I especially enjoy helping writers to build on their talent, and writers often say their confidence has been boosted by my feedback.

Please do get in touch via the contact page if you would like to discuss feedback on your work. I look forward to hearing from you!

Testimonials

"Thank you so much for these comments and edits. They are so amazing and helpful and I'm going to implement it all. You've given me a real confidence boost yet given me really useful critique. It really helped to see the examples in the line edits.' - Sarah Brewer

"I love how you've approached my story, and the suggestions you have made" - Max China

"I sent along my extract and she had it back to me within a week - her notes were so thorough and purposeful and have really driven the progress of my next project. She was really invested in my story and had given it so much thought. If you're looking for some great feedback, I couldn't recommend her more!" - L.M. Nathan, author of The Virtue Season, July 2024

"Elizabeth is an amazingly perceptive mentor. She helped me to hone the opening of my novel so that I could really make it shine and her support gave me the confidence I needed to submit the novel to my now agent. I recommend Elizabeth very warmly to anyone who needs guidance or editorial help" - Ina Christova

"Having Liz as a mentor helped me be confident in my own voice. Her feedback always felt sensitive and constructive which was so valuable in the first stages of writing my novel. If you're looking for someone to guide you [...] she is an excellent mentor" - Sophia Hembeck

"Elizabeth is a generous, insightful and inspirational mentor. Her feedback filled me with confidence and her guidance on narrative structure and perspective really helped turn my manuscript around. She is very easy to talk to and a joy for discussing all things writerly" - Parry Basi

"Liz has been such a huge help to me as a mentor. It was because of her encouragement that I managed to get from 20,000 words to finishing my first draft. Her input is so thoughtful and valuable and I feel very lucky to have it" - Agnes Halvorssen

I offer the following services to aid you on your writing journey. All prices include detailed written feedback.

A face-to-face Zoom session for further discussion is available for an additional fee.

Woman Writing
Notebook
Notebook and Pen

Submission Pack support

Your approach to agents is important. I can help you prepare your submission pack, including critique on the opening chapters of your work, the synopsis and covering letter.

Cost £50

Detailed feedback - 5,000 words

I will provide detailed written feedback on your work, be it 5000 words of a novel or a short story.

Cost £50

Detailed feedback - 10,000 words

I will provide detailed written feedback on your work, be it 10000 words of a novel or a short story.

Cost £90

Novels and novellas edited

£80 per 10,000 words

Contact Me

Thanks for submitting!

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