UV2024 Finalists

The Undiscovered Voices 2024 Anthology features the talent of sixteen writers whose work impressed our judges and who have been selected as up-and-coming voices in the world of books for teens and children.

16 unagented and unpublished writers.

Previous finalists responsible for over 400 books worldwide.

With your help these voices won’t stay undiscovered for long.

Louise AustinThe Undead Journals of Alex Abbott

Louise Austin is a reformed lawyer from Kent, who is raising a teen, a tween and a recent discoverer of chapter books. When not immersed in stories, she is chair of governors at her local primary school and the devoted servant of a fluffy, white Cavapoo. Her writing won the Cornerstones PWA prize for most promising longlisted manuscript in the Bath Children’s Novel Award 2022 and second prize in the WriteMentor NID Awards 2022.

Sarah BatesAll Your Numbered Bones

Sarah Bates grew up in Ireland, but now lives in London, where she works in publishing by day and writes scary stories after dark. She is a 2023 WriteMentor mentee.

Henry ColesThe Traitor’s Moon

Originally from a small village in Yorkshire, Henry now lives in Edinburgh with his partner, children and cats. He is one of the 2023 Scottish Book Trust New Writer Awardees and has been shortlisted and longlisted in various competitions including the Times Chicken House IET150 prize and Bath Children’s Novel award.

Stephen DalyPicture This

Stephen Daly is a queer writer from a working-class community. Following his degree in psychosocial studies and MA in Creative Writing, he is interested in writing about the social and cultural issues young people experience. Picture This has personal resonance. Stephen grew up as a queer young man during the Troubles and left the country at eighteen to try and be himself. He believes it’s time to tell more queer Irish stories. This is one.

Elizabeth FowlerAs Dreams are Made

Elizabeth Fowler has been variously a Bookseller, TEFL Teacher, Publishing Assistant, and Neuropsychology Researcher. She currently lives in Scotland with her wife, wrangles data for a living, and edits fiction for a literary journal for kicks. As Dreams are Made was inspired by her longstanding interest in the nature of consciousness. It was written during a global pandemic.

Sarah FultonBriony Calderwood and the Water Witches

Originally from California, Sarah moved to the UK to pursue her master’s degree in creative writing from the University of Edinburgh. She continues to live in the city, where she works as a wedding photographer. Her previous writing was longlisted for Undiscovered Voices 2020 and Mslexia Children’s Novel Competition.

Natalia GodsmarkThe TOTALLY UNSOLVABLE Mysteries: Let Sleeping Phones Lie

Having been raised on a diet of dumplings and beetroot soup, and surrounded by books throughout her childhood, Natalia combined these two aspects of her life – her half-Polish roots and her love for mysteries – resulting in a story about a Polish wannabe detective. Earlier this year she won the I am in Print MG/YA Novel Award and was long listed for the Mslexia Children’s Novel Award. She is currently a WriteMentor Summer mentee.

Jo HowardLegal Walls

This book is a love letter to the grimy area of Manchester where Jo lives. Her husband is Spanish, they have three children and like Diego’s, their family is bilingual. Jo’s goddaughters are Nigerian and face the same battles as Chidozie to gain British citizenship. She’s interviewed several graffiti writers to make Diego’s language and challenges realistic. Two graffiti writers have done authenticity reads for her. She’s had an authenticity read from a Spanish friend.

Catrìona McLeanThe Book of Marionetta Stone

Catrìona McLean works in publishing and her recent projects include Northern Dreaming – a children’s anthology co-published by LEEDS 2023 and the British Library that was gifted to every child born in Leeds in 2023. In 2022, she won a Develop Your Creative Practice grant from Arts Council England to complete The Book of Marionetta Stone with mentoring from Cornerstones Literary Agency.

Allison MandraHigh Achievers

Allison strives to write the types of stories that captivated her when she was growing up. This means whimsical quests, wild adventures, and twists of magic or mayhem that can turn a seemingly normal world upside- down. When not writing children’s books, you may find Allison writing about economics instead. And when not writing at all, you will likely find her hovering over a puzzle, studying up on French, or enjoying a hike in the woods.

Eiman MunroWazeerah Ameerah & the Stolen Astrolabe

As an autistic British-Iraqi migrant, Eiman enjoys creating middle eastern characters with authentic autistic presentations. Her background is teaching with specialism in serving autistic students aged 8 to 25. She is actively involved as a co-facilitator with the National Autism Trainer Programme and presents workshops for NHS professionals. She has also contributed a chapter to ‘Learning from Autistic Teachers’ which came out in 2022 published by Jessica Kingsley Publishers.

Richard ParkerDrowning in Pea Soup

Richard has lived in Spain, Portugal, Brunei and Hong Kong and has now settled back in London as the headteacher of an International School. Over the years, he has taught many students in the middle grade age bracket. Richard has written a number of novels for children and young adults.

Natalie RutherfordThe Great Sheep Swap

Natalie is a walking midlife crisis. Current obsessions include learning to play the trombone, swimming in icy lakes, and becoming a children’s author. Originally from the West Midlands, Natalie now lives in rural Cumbria with her husband and two children, where she works for a charity. She falls asleep to the sound of sheep most nights.

Esther ScherpenisseCinders and Stars

Esther Scherpenisse is a writer, mom, and content marketer living near Amsterdam in the Netherlands. In the US, her fantasy story ‘Long for this World’ was published in Space and Time Magazine in 2018. The Dutch version of this story won the Harland Award for best speculative short story. Besides writing she has a love for hiking, outer space, and musical theatre.

Priyesh ShahThe Hidden Life of Sunil Pandya

Priyesh is an aspiring children’s author living in Bristol. His middle-grade book is based on his experiences and memories of childhood – of being an only child, happy in his own world but, at the same time, being bullied in school and having nobody to talk to, and of being a second-generation immigrant.

Maggie WormersleySUPERS

Maggie Womersley grew up in the shadow of a haunted castle in Sussex. The oldest of four siblings, her early years were spent building dens in attics or abandoned chicken houses and reading a lot. After graduating with a degree in Film Studies, she worked as an archive film producer before leaving the TV industry to concentrate on writing and bringing up her neurodiverse son. Unlike her heroine, she has a terrible memory for faces.