Masterclass with HOLLY BOURNE

23rd March 2024 2:15pm to 3:45pm, Online

Learn from one of the leading lights in YA fiction by joining us for this exclusive masterclass led by critically acclaimed author Holly Bourne.

Holly has grown and maintained a very successful career writing for young adults. Her books often centre around mental health, but how can you write sensitively about difficult issues? This practical session will include writing exercises and discussion on how to effectively - yet sensitively - approach topical issues within books for the YA marketplace.

To view our full festival line-up, click here. A weekend pass is available for just £80!

Speaker profiles
Holly Bourne

Holly started her writing career as a news journalist, where she was nominated for Best Print Journalist of the Year. She then spent six years working as an editor, a relationship advisor, and general ‘agony aunt’ for a youth charity – helping young people with their relationships and mental health. Inspired by what she saw, she started writing teen fiction, including the best-selling, award-winning ‘Spinster Club’ series which helps educate teenagers about feminism. When she turned thirty, Holly wrote her first adult novel, examining the intensified pressures on women once they hit that landmark.

Alongside her writing, Holly has a keen interest in women’s rights and is an advocate for reducing the stigma of mental health problems. She’s helped create online apps that teach young people about sexual consent, works with Women’s Aid to spread awareness of abusive relationships, and runs Rethink’s mental health book club.

And There's More... Pitch Your Work to a Literary Agent!

Reserving a place at this masterclass entitles you to a place at our agent panel discussion, which begins at 14.45 on Sunday 24th March 2024.

Charlotte Colwill and Julia Churchill, two specialist children’s agents will join us to critique your pitches live, offer general guidance and advice on the submission process for both authors and/or illustrators, and take questions via a live Q&A.

Ahead of this session, you will be invited to submit your own novel pitch. A select number of pitches will then be chosen by our agents, and critiqued during the session itself! Look out for an email from W&A in days leading up to the festival, which will contain all the information you need about how to submit your pitch.

Festival Raffle

Every festival attendee is automatically entered into our festival raffle, while weekend pass holders receive two raffle entries. The raffle will be drawn at the end of the festival, with the following prizes up for grabs:

3rd prize: Children's Writers' & Artists' Yearbook 2024 and Bloomsbury Children's book bundle

2nd prize: complimentary place at any W&A evening masterclass (RRP £30) + Children's Writers' & Artists' Yearbook 2024 and Bloomsbury Children's book bundle

1st prize: gratis Opening Chapters editing service (RRP £240/£380)

Booking & payment

A booking for this event gives you access to the following: an online masterclass with Holly Bourne (14:15-15.45, Saturday 23rd March 2024) and a panel discussion with literary agents (14.45-16.15, Sunday 24th March 2024), while you will also automatically receive a single entry into our festival raffle.

Like the rest of the festival, this masterclass session will take place online in full and will be presented using video conferencing software. Joining instructions, links, and full guidance will be circulated for the above in the week leading up to the festival.

Any event materials associated to this masterclass will be made available to attendees at the author's discretion, with any live recordings of this event made available for a time-limited period.

This individual masterclass session is priced at £45 (inc. VAT), and payable in full online.

Please note that payment instalment plans are available for all W&A events, writing courses and editing services. Contact W&A Admin on so that we can find a payment schedule that works for you.

To view our event refund and cancellation policy, please click here.

Accessible to All

It’s of real importance to Writers & Artists that our events and courses remain accessible to all.

  • Writers & Artists has made one full weekend pass available for our festival as part of our accessibility scheme. Please visit our bursaries page for further information about how to apply. All bursary applications must have been submitted for consideration by 4th March 2024
  • At the author’s discretion, event materials will be made available to attendees after the masterclass.
  • A link to a recording of the masterclass will be circulated after the event. This will be made available to event attendees only, and for a time-limited period.
  • Each event will include written text and visuals. Please contact us in advance so that we can make arrangements to be sure all documents appear in a format that works for you.
  • If you’d like to attend but have any questions or concerns regarding accessibility, then please email



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