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Webinar — 01.09.2021


Online Event

Making the most of a crisis

In 2020, Phoebe Luckhurst made news when her debut novel was part of a five-way auction eventually securing a six-figure deal with publishers Michael Joseph. Writing a book had always been a dream of hers and, while the world was in the crisis around her, she managed to turn her dream to six-figure reality. We were joined in September to chat with the brilliant journalist and novelist about how to make the most of a crisis, and her journey to success.

Phoebe is Features Editor of the Evening Standard, for whom she also writes features, columns and interviews, and appears regularly on their podcast, The Leader. She has written for the Guardian, Sunday Times Style, ELLE, ES Magazine, Grazia, the Telegraph and Vogue. Her debut The Lock In had achieved wide acclaim, listed in The Evening Standard’s Best New Books in 2021 and described by the i as “a dream read”.

Our 10 key takeaways:

1. It’s a common myth that there’s a specific path into journalism - there’s not! It doesn’t always take an art degree and MA in journalism. 

2. It’s hard to plan a career in journalism and it’s rarely a linear development. The key is to say yes to things (within reason!) and be nice to everyone in the room. 

3. There was a slight gender split when Phoebe started in journalism where women were given softer topics but really the issue in the industry to be addressed is the divide within class and race. 

4. There should be a sustainable model for papers where readers pay for good content. 

5. It is not easy to run multiple projects at a time and it can be overwhelming. Time management is always going to help. Time is a luxury so look for your dead time and use that appropriately. 

6. You need energy and passion to be involved in multiple projects. Without both success will be tricky. 

7. When writing a novel, a sort of bubble is formed when you only write for you - if you’re lucky enough for editors to be interested then there has to be a shift in thinking and you need to be open to ideas and criticism. 

8. The most exciting part of writing a novel, and the most terrifying, is waiting for the reviews. 

9. On writing her second book, Phoebe has found a certain level of self-awareness with her target audience and what went well with her first but she’s found that being open to learning is most important. “Learn from people who know more than you”. 

10. Twitter can be a very toxic place and is not representative of the media at large. 


Wednesday 1st September 2021

18:00 - 19:00


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Phoebe Luckhurst

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