Edward Fenton - Editor
Edward Fenton has worked as a writer, publisher and editor for almost his entire career. He started out as a music journalist for NME, before getting his first job in publishing. His novel ‘Scorched Earth’ won the Sinclair Prize for Fiction, judged by a panel of former Booker judges.
He has written and/or researched over twenty radio documentaries, broadcast on BBC Radios 1, 3 and 4, and his documentary on Samuel Pepys’s love of music was described by the Independent on Sunday as ‘radio documentary at its best’. He has a particular interest in diaries, and in 1998 he set up an independent publishing company, Day Books. His editions of historical diaries have featured in the Books of the Year lists in the national press, chosen by writers including Iain Sinclair and Martin Amis. He co-wrote the libretto of an opera which had its London premiere at the BBC Proms: and he is currently a member of the Four Wordsmen, who regularly perform their work at a range of events and festivals.
WHY WE LOVE EDWARD
Edward is our memoir specialist (among other things!). He’s a meticulous researcher and exactly who you want on your side when writing something so personal.
WHAT EDWARD SAYS ABOUT EDITING
I’ve never forgotten what it’s like to feel alone as a writer, desperate to get your words out there but with little idea how. So now I consider it a privilege to be able to work with other writers, to make their material as good as possible in order to reach a wide readership.
The fact that Jericho Writers doesn’t let its editors hide behind anonymity – unlike some other literary consultancies – means that no one should never feel that we’re delivering judgments from on high. I see it as a process of peer review. If I’m able to identify technical problems in someone else’s writing, it’s generally because I’ve made the same mistakes myself, and have worked out how to fix them.
And when I come across a new voice that urgently needs to be heard, and I discover that I can help – as with best-selling author Tim O’Rourke, who was able to give up his day job to write full time – that’s the most rewarding thing of all.
What Edward works on
Genres Edward specialises in
Edward's published books
I Was Writing This Diary for You, Sasha
The diary of a young Czech actress written whilst on the run from a Nazi labour camp in 1945. It chronicles her journey through the war zones of central Europe, and her quest to be reunited with her husband Sasha whom she had last seen when they were prisoners of war together at Auschwitz.
A Brief Jolly Change: The Diaries of Henry Peerless, 1891-1920
The diaries of Henry Peerless provide a fascinating insight into one of the most important social trends of the past 150 years: the rise of mass tourism following the coming of the railway.
For thirty years Henry peerless travelled all round the British Isles and beyond, by horse-drawn carriage, steam-train, steam-ship, bicycle and motor-car. The daily record of his journeys is not just a lively travelogue from a vanished world. it also paints an unforgettable picture of a whole class of people striving for diversion and pleasure at a time of unprecedented and cataclysmic change.
The Diaries of John Dee
John Dee was not just a mystic and mathematician, adviser to Francis Drake and astrologer to Queen Eliazbeth I: he also kept the first great diary in the English language. Now his private journals and spirit diaries are brought together for the first time, compiled from the original documents in the Bodleian Library and the British Museum.
With an engaging lightness of touch and much humour this book tells the story of ten days in the lives of four unemployed young people sharing a flat in London. Chris tries to earn money selling postcards and taking foreigners on guided tours; Dan has a job in a ticket agency until he is sacked because of the recession; Sue calls at the Job centre every day but without results; and Rat-faced, well-intentioned but goofy, concentrates on growing his secret crop. The humour is compassionate yet critical and there is an underlying serious concern about the plight of the unemployed and their feelings of frustration and powerlessness in the face of a seemingly complacent Establishment.