Editing, critiquing, teaching

Welcome to The Creative Shed. I'm a professional author, editor and writing teacher. I'm here to support you and refine your work so that the words leap off the page into the imaginations of your readers.



I'm Sarah Ward, a writer, editor and teacher. My first four crime novels including the Amazon bestselling The Shrouded Path were published by Faber and Faber. My gothic thriller, The Quickening, is coming in August 2020. I have experience of editing both historical and contemporary novels and providing supportive critiques of manuscripts.

I love taking my passion for books out into the wider world. On this website, you'll also find information about my author talks, the events I chair and my schedule of creative writing workshops.



Below are the services I offer. Manuscript critiques provide feedback on part or all of your manuscript. These are ideal if you haven't yet had any professional input into your writing. If you're happy with what you've written and are preparing your book for publication, I can help you refine your writing by providing a line by line copy edit. If your manuscript is ready to go out to publishers, I can polish your submission letter, synopsis and opening chapters.

I'm a qualified teacher with significant experience of delivering creative writing workshops. I also regularly give author talks on a range of subjects.


Manuscript critiques are ideal if you haven't had any professional feedback in relation to your writing. For my first novel, which became In Bitter Chill, I had my manuscript assessed and I found the process invaluable in identifying what worked and where I needed to improve my story. At their best, a manuscript critique can transform your novel. Writers become so close to their work, it can be difficult to see what is working and what isn't. This is where I can help.


Once you're happy with the overall shape of your manuscript, I can provide a full editing service.


Once you're happy your novel is in the best shape, now's the time to make sure your opening chapters, synopsis and cover letter are perfectly polished before sending them to agents and publishers.


I'm an experienced in delivering author talks on my own novels in addition to speaking a range of crime fiction topics including Nordic Noir and Golden Age novels.

I've delivered talks in large-scale venues including The British Library, plus at festivals and in bookshops, schools, libraries and prisons.

I regularly interview other authors and moderate book events - past interviewees include Sophie Hannah, Ann Cleeves, and Shari Lapena

I'm also an experienced after dinner speaker.

If you'd like more information, please contact me for more details.


I'm an experienced deliverer of creative writing workshops with an emphasis on teaching crime fiction, historical novels and ghost stories.  I can teach workshops from one hour in length to a week long course. To discuss your requirements, please contact me below.



Feel free to get in touch about writing, editing, or anything else you’re curious about.

Sarah Ward


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