South East


Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Kent, Oxfordshire, Surrey, Sussex

Network Organisers

Cynthia Huijgens received her MEd Art Education from the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, and uses the tagline 'art educator exploring write ideas'. In 2016, she was selected for AWP’s Writer to Writer Mentor Program and the following year graduated from Simon Fraser University's The Writers Studio. Cynthia has published two children’s illustrated picture books, A Fish Called Andromeda (2022) and Polar Bear and the UFO (2020), along with two middle grade fiction novels as part of an ongoing series. When she’s not assisting SCBWI members in the SE, she’s organizing socials for Society of Authors members living in the same region, or gardening. Mostly gardening. As Co-Network Coordinator Cynthia looks forward to meeting members and helping them get the most of their SCBWI membership.

Zoe Kear writes middle grade, YA and chapter books. Whilst studying for her MA in creative writing at RHUL she began her fantasy trilogy. Zoe teaches English at an international school. She has experience in increasing students’ interest in reading through initiatives at school, including book clubs, book lists and creating in class activities to support author visits.

About South East

When Cynthia and Zoe began their role as South East co-coordinators in September of last year, they set out to discover what support and activities members in the South East would like to see on offer. After querying local group leaders, they came up with a plan. In March 2024 they launched weekly writing sprints for all SE members and monthly support sessions for local group leaders. Social events and day retreats are currently in the planning stages for this summer. Watch this space!

Please contact:

Critique groups

Active Groups

  • Oxford - Alice Nuttal
  • Guildford - Nick Berry
  • Petersfield - Sue Rawlings
  • Reading - Kate Poels
  • Wokingham - Sally Rowe
  • Southampton - Summer Quigley



Critique Group Leader 

 If you are interested in running a local critique or social group for writers and illustrators, please get in touch. Areas in particular need of leaders are: 

  • Brighton 
  • Canterbury.
  • Online 

 If you would like to join a group, let us know at  

Writing Sprints

  • Thursday 7th March 7:00 - 8:00pm
  • Saturday 16th March 10:00 11:00am
  • Thursday 21st March 7:00 - 8:00pm

Critique Group Leader Support Sessions

  • Saturday 23rd March 10:00 - 11:00
  • Saturday 27th April 2:00 - 3:00
  • Saturday May 25th 12:00 - 1:00

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