Tom Vowler

Tom Vowler – Editor

I am an editor, a prize-winning author and creative writing lecturer with more than ten years' experience.


I am and editor, a prize-winning author and creative writing lecturer. My fiction has appeared widely, in dozens of literary journals and magazines, and my debut collection of short stories, The Method, won the Scott Prize in 2010. My two novels, What Lies Within and That Dark Remembered Day, received critical acclaim. A former journalist, I am now a commissioning editor with Unthank Books. This involves working with authors to ensure their fiction achieves its most accomplished form, my input varying from structural and tonal to aesthetic and grammatical. I have an MA and PhD in Creative Writing from Plymouth University, and am represented by a major literary agency. I was shortlisted for the prestigious Commonwealth Prize in 2017 and my latest book, a collection of stories called Dazzling the Gods, has just been published. I am happy to appraise your entire manuscript, or work on an extract. Equally, I can critique your short stories, or non-fiction. Feel free to get in touch to discuss your work, or to request a sample of my editorial work with authors. Meanwhile, I look forward to working with you.
Historical Fiction Literary Fiction Mystery & Crime Short Story Thriller & Suspense
English (AUS) English (CAN) English (NZ) English (UK) English (US)
  • Scott Prize 2010
  • Edge Hill Readers' Prize 2011
  • Bristol Prize (3rd) 2014
  • Storgy Prize (runner-up) 2015
  • HappenStance Prize 2008
  • Not The Booker Prize (longlist) 2014
  • PhD Creative Writing
  • MA Creative Writing

Work experience


Jul, 2017 — Present

Plymouth University

Sep, 2011 — Present

I teach creative writing to both undergraduates and post-graduates.

High-quality online journal

May, 2009 — Present

I began on the journal as a reader, and then as assistant fiction editor, but have been editor for two years now. We are an annual publication specialising in the short story. I collaborate with authors to ensure their fiction reaches its potential, which can involve large structural changes to line edits.


The False River

Nick Holdstock

The first collection from a brilliant new British voice.A bereaved mother loiters at the school gates; an old man searches through books for the secret to eternal life; a bus driver is obsessed with one of his passengers; a young woman’s happiness causes suffe... read more
Emily thought her ordeal was over after she escaped a brutal kidnapping. She’s wrong. He’s coming for her again.Azrael has two victims captive on his remote property. To rescue the women Detective Rose needs to get into the mind of a sexual predator. Can she d... read more
The Convenient

Albert Marsolais

Lizard & Other Stories

Marcelle Mateki Akita

Follow the stories of five young characters who try to make sense of loss, sex and sexuality in ‘Lizard & Other Stories’. Marcelle Mateki Akita explores how topics such as broken family and romantic relationships, sexual violence and masturbation impact a youn... read more
That Dark Remembered Day
Winner of the 2010 Scott Prize for Short Fiction and the 2011 Edge Hill Readers' Prize. The characters in this award-winning debut collection are very good at losing things: children, lovers, hope, the plot. They discover the past is not a place easily escaped... read more

Tom Vowler

Short Fiction

various/Plymouth University students

Plymouth University publication published annually in September, showcasing new work by a selection of students.
A guide to writing a short story. It features a collection of 24 essays from the short story writers, many of them prize winners in the toughest short story competitions in the English language. It includes writing exercises, and lists of published stories.

Tom has 14 reviews





Sarah M.

Sarah M.

Jul, 2019

I recently hired Tom to edit a short story that I'm planning on submitting to competitions. He pointed out not-so-great habits I am guilty of and suggested helpful ways of fixing them. My story is 20 pages and he returned 15 pages of invaluable feedback. If you want to take your writing to the next level, I highly recommend hiring Tom.
Roslyn C.

Roslyn C.

Jul, 2019

Tom's assessment of my manuscript was prompt, professional and helpful.
Antara M.

Antara M.

Jul, 2019

Tom is a fantastic editor and an absolute joy to work with. His observation and feedback have helped me to understand my shortcomings. After months of revision what I have in hand now is way more evolved than what I had submitted to him. His suggestion to add a particular literary technique in the narrative has added a new dimension to the story and has made it much more convincing. I believe,...
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Prasanth A.

Prasanth A.

Apr, 2019

Working with Tom was great. He has given me exactly the kind of detailed and thorough feedback I had been looking for.
David T.

David T.

Mar, 2019

1. I was delighted with Tom's enthusiastic and immediate response to my inquiry. 2. He completed his review of my m.s. when he said he would. 3. The review was thorough, very fair and incredibly helpful. 4. I have taken his advice on all aspects of what I have written, researched the sources he advised to further my learning and completed a further draft.

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