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The Workers

Meet the team working to promote great writers and bring you closer to their stories and inspiration.

Cathy Galvin

Director and Founder

Journalist, poet and editor, Cathy Galvin established Word Factory to bring the best short story writers together for readings, masterclasses and to share new work. She is committed to building a supportive community of writers from every walk of life. For information on our artistic programme, planning and creative projects contact: Cathy@thewordfactory.tv

Sophie Haydock

Associate Director

Sophie is a journalist and editor and is working on her first novel - opening extracts of which have been long- and short-listed for several awards in 2018. She was a top-five finalist in the Adventures in Fiction Spotlight First Novel and New Voices competition; was longlisted for the Retreat West First Chapter; shortlisted for the 2018 PENfro Book Festival’s First Chapter Competition; and most recently, was shortlisted for the 2018 Impress Prize for New Writers. She can be contacted with questions about the short story club (which she co-hosts with Zoe Gilbert), Word Factory membership, masterclasses and salons by email: Sophie@thewordfactory.tv or Twitter: @SophieHaydock

Carlotta Eden

Social Media Manager

Carlotta is a writer and editor living in Berlin and co-founder of Synaesthesia, a literary and arts magazine for the senses. She was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2015 and her writing can be found on Necessary Fiction, matchbook, WhiskeyPaper, Chicago Literati and elsewhere. Find more at www.carlottaeden.com.

Twitter: @1chae.

Rupert Dastur

Editorial Associate

Rupert Dastur writes and edits for The Word Factory. If you have ideas and news that will interest the Word Factory contact him at: rupert@thewordfactory.tv

Tony and Corinne Oulton

Design Editors

This creative design partnership work in SW London at the end of their garden. They produce contemporary design that withstands the test of time – thoughtful, clear and unpretentious. Over the years they've been lucky enough to work with many innovative and interesting people, sharing a passion to launch new ideas and create new brands.


Zoe Gilbert

Short Story Club Director

Zoe’s short stories have appeared in anthologies and journals in the UK and internationally. Her story 'Fishskin, Hareskin' won the Costa Short Story Award 2014. Her work has also won prizes from Cinnamon Press, Lightship, and the British Fantasy Society amongst others, and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She is currently working on her first folklore-inspired collection as part of her PhD on the short story at Chichester University. She runs a writers’ critique group in London and co-hosts the Word Factory short story club.

Twitter: @mindandlanguage.

Eloise Wales

Online Manager

Eloise manages and updates the Word Factory website.

She can be found on Twitter at @EloiseWales.

Peggy Lee

Social Media Associate

Peggy grew up in France and has been living in London for two years working as a bookseller, an editorial assistant and an assistant agent. She loves reading anything she can get her hands on and writes down ideas for stories on scraps of paper that she promptly loses. She will start an MA in creative writing at the UEA in the Autumn.

Emma De Vito

Social Media Associate (Instagram)

Originally from the West Midlands, but now living in Northampton, Emma is an English teacher and aspiring flash fiction and short story writer. Travel often motivates Emma’s writing and in addition to travelling round the UK and Europe, she spent a year working and travelling in Australia, blogging about her experiences. In 2016, she co-founded a writing group in her local area and got involved with The Word Factory by volunteering to run their Instagram account.

Avani Shah

Social Media Associate

Avani is a graduate of UEA’s BA and MA Creative Writing programmes. In 2017, her story Greed was shortlisted for the Guardian and Fourth Estate Short Story Prize and she was mentored by Nikesh Shukla as part of the Word Factory Apprenticeship Award. Her fiction is available to read on 4thestate.co.uk, newwriting.net and in Words and Women Two.

Sophie Pélissier

Social Media Associate

Sophie Pélissier is a freelance writer and illustrator, whose drawings and lifestyle articles can be found in the Fitzrovia and Bloomsbury Journals. She works part-time for an independent publisher as well as a letterpress printer in north London, both ample sources of inspiration for her own stories and poems. See more of her work on her website:www.sophiepelissier.com..

Kerris Gibson

Social Media Associate

Kerris lives in Newcastle. She is a writer and poet and writes news posts for The Word Factory’s social media.

Gaynor Jones

Social Media Associate

Gaynor Jones is a short fiction writer based in Manchester. In 2018 she won the Mairtín Crawford Short Story Award at Belfast Book Festival and was named Northern Writer of the Year at the Northern Soul Awards. She has been nominated for Best Small Fictions, Best of the Net and the Pushcart Prize. She runs the Story For Daniel competition to raise awareness of blood stem cell donation and childhood cancer support.


Paul McVeigh

Associate Director

Paul’s short stories have been published in literary journals and anthologies, been commissioned by BBC Radio 4 and read on BBC Radio 5. He’s also written plays and comedy shows and his debut novel ‘The Good Son’ is out with Salt Publishing. He blogs on short story oportunities here which provides our monthly round up, and tweets on short stories via @paul_mc_veigh.

Sharon Eckman

Social Media Associate

Sharon Eckman is a multi-tasking actor/singer/writer. After becoming Time Out Travel Writer of the Year, her non-fiction subsequently appeared in broadsheets and magazines on topics ranging from Namibian hunters to London science fiction fans. She was longlisted for the Fish Memoir Prize 2015 and 2017, shortlisted for Words & Women Prose competition 2016 and for the Jerwood/Arvon Mentorship Scheme in 2017. Short fiction has appeared in Shooter Lit, Words & Women: 3, 100 Voices: An Anthology, 100 Voices/100 Years and New Flash Fiction Review. She is currently working on a novel and will never read anything where a dog dies.
Twitter: @SharonEckman

Divya Ghelani

Programme Associate

Divya Ghelani is a graduate of UEA’s Creative Writing MA and holds an MPhil in Literary Studies from the University of Hong Kong. Her stories have been published in Litro: India, The Bookseller, Visual Verse and more. In 2016 she won a Word Factory Apprenticeship. Divya’s novel-in-progress has been shortlisted and longlisted for four literary awards. She lives between UK and Berlin and is rep’d by Niki Chang of Aitken Alexander Associates. Visit www.divyaghelani.com and follow her for book talk @DivyaGhelani.

Peter Clarke – Tangent Films

Film Editor

Peter has cut single documentaries and series for BBC, Channel 4, Discovery, PBS, ARTE and GEO. He set up Tangent Films with producer, director and composer colleagues and the company, amongst many other things,produces video profiles of artists, sculptors, musicians and writers.


Rebecca Swirsky

Film Interviewer

Rebecca is a fiction writer and critic, whose work appears in Salt’s Best British Short Stories 2015 anthology, Bridport’s 2013 Anthology and Ambit Magazine. As winner of the inaugural Word Factory Apprenticeship, Rebecca was mentored by the writer Stella Duffy. Rebecca has been published in the Observer, The Economist, The Financial Times, the TLS and the Royal Society of Literature Review, and her fiction shortlisted or placed in competitions including The Manchester Fiction Award, Fish Short Fiction Prize, Bristol Short Story Award, The Bath Short Story Award, the Sean O’Faolin Prize and The Lightship Prize.

Twitter: @rebexswirsky.

Carrie Kania

Word Factory Consultant

Carrie Kania worked in US publishing at Random House and HarperCollins for many (many) years before moving to London. In London, she helped start The Society Club, a literary cocktail bar in Soho and Shoreditch and works as an agent with Conville & Walsh. She’s worked on the three sides of bookselling: agent-publisher-bookseller and is making herself available for one-on-one consultations via The Word Factory. Carrie’s clients include Paul McVeigh and Simon Van Booy.

Tamara Pollock

Editorial Associate

Editor and writer Tamara Pollock contributes to content and is responsible for monitoring feedback and subscriptions.

Alison Hitchcock

Programme Executive

Among her many roles at the Word Factory, Alison Hitchcock manages the masterclasses and membership scheme while supporting Director Cathy Galvin. Lawyer, business woman and budding writer, Alison works with growing companies, sitting on Boards and advising in a management consultant capacity. Her clients range from innovative start ups to established listed companies. Writing short stories keeps her corporate and creative worlds in perfect balance.

Twitter: @alihitchcock1.

James Lawson


Our regular contributors include:

  • Kerstin Twachtmann

  • Alexa Radcliffe-Hart

  • Holly Dawson

  • Lauren Addicott

  • Lindsay Waller-Wilkinson

  • Andrew Oldham