"Cornerstones paired me with a fantastic editor, Ben, who helped me to turn my raw draft into a submittable one. We worked on characters, storyline, and the essential suspense and goosebump readability. Helen then passed me through to my hands-on agent. We did further revisions and one year on, I have a dream two-book deal with Headline! Thank you so much to Cornerstones, I couldn’t have done it without you."
Emily Gunnis, 'The Girl in the Letter' (Headline, 2018)
"Dinah's thorough, wise and helpful report really helped improve the manuscript. The fact that she was so positive carried me through the tough months before publication of We Do Not Kill Children."
Penelope Wallace, 'We Do Not Kill Children', Mightier than the Sword
"Cornerstones helped me navigate the treacherous journey between first draught and finished manuscript, and with their encouragement, I was shortlisted for The Bath Novel Award and now have an agent."
Scott Bain, 'The God Bullet'
"Working with the staff at Cornerstones was one of the best writing decisions I’ve made. They gave me direction and the belief to keep going - can’t thank them enough."
Libby McGuan, 'The Eidolon', Solaris, and shortlisted for British Fantasy Awards 2014
"I always loved writing, but my writing was aimless and unfocused – and getting nowhere. Cornerstones gave me the missing piece. They taught me the crucial editing, planning and plotting tools that focused my work and led to publication. I might still just be dreaming if it weren’t for Helen and Lee."
Dean Carson, 'Dead or Alive', Endeavour
"My Cornerstones’s report was a pivotal moment in the writing journey. It guided me towards the story I wanted to tell and it gave me clarity and confidence. For a debut, would-be author, these are things that money can't buy."
Claire Hajaj, 'Ishmael's Oranges', Oneworld
"I’d managed to work my manuscript (and myself) up into a bit of a tangled mess that I couldn’t seem to get out of… Cornerstones helped me to unpick the knots and smooth out my plot, and they did this with clarity and simplicity. The guidance and feedback they offered was instrumental in helping me to find a home for my writing, and now I’ve signed a great deal with a fantastic publisher for a Young Adult trilogy!"
Johanna Handley, 'The Burning of Juniper Slaide', Rudling House
"Cornerstones' review came at a pivotal moment, as I was about to give it up and stick to Sci-fi. The journey was long, and I wrote to 25 agents and five publishers; in the end it was three publishers who got back to me, two of whom made an offer."
JF Kirwan, '66 Metres', Carina
“At a time when I nearly gave up, Cornerstones provided encouragement, tools and tips, and – most importantly - hope. They’re like a literary hug, with a sprinkling of magic.”
Rosemary Dun, 'The Trouble With Love', Sphere
"I always loved writing, but my writing was aimless and unfocused - and getting nowhere. Cornerstones gave me the missing piece. They taught me the crucial editing, planning and plotting tools that focused my work and led to publication. I might still just be dreaming if it wasn't for Helen and Lee."
Anthony Galvin, Penguin and Endeavour Press
"Many thanks to Cornerstones and the team for the invaluable advice. I took it seriously, and now it's paid off! My journey to publication has been a really long one, but I'm glad I stuck it out."
Imran Hashim, 'Annabelle Thong', Epigram Books
“I was a complete novice about writing and coming to the publishing industry very green. Cornerstones helped to shape my manuscript, find an agent and now the book is being published. It’s the realisation of ten years of work and a dream come true for me to see my story about my disabled twins finally come to light.”
James Melville-Ross, 'Two For Joy', John Blake Publishing
"Thanks for building up Cornerstones, Helen. I sometimes wonder whether I would have given up by now if you all hadn't been there to push and guide and shove. You really do provide a remarkable service to us budding writers with big dreams."
"Cornerstones really gave me that initial kick start and I'll always be grateful. I am thrilled to say I'm now signed with PFD and have a book deal with Scholastic in the UK and US."
Lisa Thompson, 'The Goldfish Boy', 2017
“For constructive and professional editorial advice, contacting Cornerstones is a very wise move for any aspiring author. Their reports pushed my writing in the right direction, and I’m so pleased I picked up the phone and said; “The thing is, I’ve got a first draft of a novel and…”
Daniel Godfrey, 'New Pompeii', Titan Books
“Sound advice and constructive criticism–invaluable whether you’re starting out as a writer, or simply in need of a fresh pair of expert eyes.”
Craig Simpson, 'Resistance', Random House
"I believe the process I went through with Cornerstones helped me get my manuscript in shape to secure a book deal."
Annabel Kantaria, 'Coming Home', three-book deal with Harlequin
“My first experience of working with a professional editor came through Cornerstones; it’s taken a few re-writes but I’m now proud to say I’ve signed a five-book deal with Accent Press.”
Jan Ruth, 'Wild Water'
"From start to finish, I found the process seamless. My manuscript was critiqued by a fantastic editor and I wouldn't have been signed so quickly by such a prestigious agent had it not been for Cornerstones. Thank you!"
Abi Elphinstone, 'The Dreamsnatcher', Simon & Schuster
"When I first began writing I sent an early draft to Cornerstones, and without their encouragement I would probably have left it there. Thanks to their belief in my potential, I now have an agent, write full-time, and have an international three-book deal."
Rachel McIntyre, 'Me and Mr J', Egmont
“My Cornerstones report was invaluable. Too close to see what I needed to address, my editor's advice helped me focus with clarity. And she was inspiring. I surged ahead with the re-write and added 12,000 words. Now, with an agent, I am looking forward to the next stage.”
E J Whiston, 'Me Two'
“Cornerstones offered crucial help at a time when I really needed it. Thanks to the team for matching me with the right editor: my manuscript transformed from something that had previously only given me panic into a story that inspired confidence.”
Roshani Chokshi, 'The Gilded Wolves', Wednesday Books
“The Cornerstones edit was a turning-point. It made all the difference.”
“Once I had finished the first draft of my debut novel, I knew it could be improved but felt I needed some help and guidance. Cornerstones very quickly matched me with a wonderful editor who saw both the potential in the book, and what I needed to do to make it the best it could be. The feedback was honest but encouraging and I got back to work. After a several more re-writes, I was over the moon to be picked up by one of my top-of-the list agents, followed by exciting publishing deals in the UK, US, and with sales of foreign rights. Thank you so much Cornerstones for the help and support!”
Louise Fein, People Like Us (Head of Zeus, 2020)
A selection of beautiful books that have gone through Cornerstones: