Aliya Ali-Afzal – Jericho Writers
Jericho Writers
167-169 Great Portland street, 5th Floor, London, W1W 5PF
UK: +44 (0)330 043 0150
US: +1 (646) 974 9060

Your Writing Mentor Aliya Ali-Afzal

Get expert advice from writer, mentor and mental toughness and life coach, Aliya Ali-Afzal

Aliya Ali-Afzal grew up in London, where she still lives. She has a degree in Russian and German from UCL and an MA in Creative Writing with Distinction from Royal Holloway, University of London. Her debut novel Would I Lie To Youwas sold at auction in the UK, was also published in North America and Arabic rights were sold for translation into Arabic. Would I Lie To you was selected for World Book Night 2022, was a Summer Reads Pick by Penguin Books UK, picked for Summer Must Reads by Adele Parks, and a Clare Mackintosh Book Club pick. It was featured in Cosmopolitan, Good Housekeeping, Bella, The Telegraph, The New Post, The Toronto Star and several UK newspapers and magazines. Her next novel, The Big Day, will be published in June 2024. 

Aliya is also a creative writing teacher and mentor for Jericho Writers. She loves hearing from readers and you can connect with her on Instagram @aliyaaliafzalauthor, X @aaaiswriting, and her website Aliya Ali-Afzal (

Specialises in: Contemporary fiction, crime and thriller, upmarket and book club fiction.

Aliya provides tuition for our Mentoring Service.

Why we love Aliya

Aliya is not only an expert in understanding the fundamentals of writing, but her background in resilience coaching also means that she understands the importance of moral support throughout the process – your very own cheerleader!

What Aliya says about mentoring

I am passionate about mentoring because I’ve been lucky enough to get mentoring myself. Getting targeted and tailored feedback helped me to improve my work, view it more objectively and so develop it further, and also gave me much needed moral support.

Writing a novel is a mammoth project that can take years to complete and there are so many elements to consider, such as character development, plot, language, pacing, setting, dialogue, tension. It is easy to feel overwhelmed and a mentor’s input can help pinpoint areas for improvement and also reassure you that something is working well.

Once we’ve discussed what kind of help you need, I draw up a practical plan of action with you and provide clear and honest feedback. I’ve been lucky enough to get editorial feedback from my literary agent Juliet Mushens. I learnt a lot from her about what makes a novel stand out and be ready for the market. I also use my 20 years experience as a resilience coach, as part of my mentoring. This can be a tough business and it’s important to stay positive and motivated!


Aliya has regularly commented on my contemporary crime manuscripts, two of which are now published. Aliya has that happy knack of giving enthusiastic motivational support while accurately pinpointing weaknesses in characters and plot with precise constructive criticism. Her feedback has never failed to inspire and improve my writing.

G D Saunders

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