About the Team at The Book Refinery

Our mission is to help all aspiring authors get their book 'out of their heads and into print' by offering a bespoke service, be it coaching or production.

In 2005 - whilst at a seminar - a client of Alexa's boss (she was employed full time by him) proudly produced a book that he had written, and formatted himself. Unfortunately the book was awful. The cover was mismatched, the text inside was all different sizes and the page numbers weren't in the right place.

Even though the author was really pleased with his publication - it sparked an idea and within two months, Alexa formed The Book Refinery - and has never looked back.

Her and her team have now worked on hundreds of books, from business 'how to', to fiction and childrens' publications. They are passionate about helping people become authors and they strive to produce the best looking books possible.

About Alexa—Head Book Coach & Typesetter

Alexa WhittenMy coaching story started over eight years ago, when I found myself helping out a great friend and mentor to get his book finally finished. It was a light bulb moment, as I have always been passionate about helping people, and my job at the time was helping clients with marketing and getting new leads to their business. One of the main strategies for doing this was to help clients niche their business category, and then write a book explaining their knowledge within that niche. It only seemed logical that there could be a link between helping others identify their 'expertness within', writing a book and then using that as a very powerful lead generator.

At the time, there were very few specific coaching programes designed for people wanting to be perceived as an 'expert' by writing a book, so it became a logical avenue to pursue.

Once I had helped my colleague finally finish his book (which had been sat on his hard drive for a few years) - I went and joined his team, and together we helped over a dozen busy business owners get their books published! (Not to mention Ed himself writing and publishing 2 further books in quick succession)

Prior to joining Ed Rivis' team in March 2010, I was second in command for a prominent UK based company which primarily used paperback books for front-end sales lead generation. I therefore have many years of hands-on experience laying out and typesetting books, and have developed a way to ‘coax the content’ out of my clients' minds and into their books, in a gentle yet firm way.

Ed Rivis, my colleague, generously attributes my coaching skills with the fact he successfully authored and published three books in three years, two of which have since gone on to achieve a highly-coveted Amazon 5-star rating.

"If it hadn’t been for Alexa coaching me, I know for a fact I would never have got my first book finished and in print. I started properly writing The Ultimate Web Marketing Strategy in 2005. As with so many ‘authors in waiting’, my book sat unfinished on my hard drive for more than two and a half years until I finally decided to get a book coach.

I already knew Alexa after I attended what was billed as “The World’s Most Expensive Marketing Seminar” (£35,000 for 5 days in Brighton in 2003). Alexa was one of the organisers. So I already knew that she was not only very experienced in the publishing process, but also at that event I got to know her on a personal level and knew she was someone I could work with to finally get “that damn book” (as I had started to call it) finished.

Within a few months Alexa coached me (or in some cases ‘coaxed and cajoled me’) into finally finishing off my book. She also organised the design and layout and printing, and made the whole process so easy that I have since decided to release another two books – which were a lot easier and quicker to write and publish, in part because I made sure Alexa was coaching me right from the beginning.

Becoming a published author changed my life, and I can’t recommend it enough to any professional services business owner, or anyone looking to differentiate and raise themselves and their personal brand way above their competitors.

For this reason I decided to add a publishing operation to my range of marketing services for business owners, and Alexa was the obvious person to run it.

Anyone who gets to work with Alexa on a one to one basis will discover she’s an amazing, warm and friendly person, and has an extraordinary ability to pull the very best out of everyone she works with.

When I'm not helping clients, I like to spend time with my son Oliver, travel the world and drink decent red wine with friends.

Danielle—Editor & Proof Reader

Danielle WrateI am a London based editor and decided to set the company up after being disappointed by the quality of some self-published books I’d read. I felt sad for the writers too. Although their books were obviously interesting and well thought out (otherwise I wouldn’t have bought them in the first place), they were let down by their lack of readability.

My aim is therefore simple; to make sure that your book is the very best it can be, and not to leave your readers feeling disappointed.

I wanted to become a professional writer as soon as I learned how to put pen to paper and create sentences. After graduating from Lancaster University with a BA (Hons) in Philosophy, I completed an intensive postgraduate course in journalism.

My first job was Junior Reporter with the Hackney Gazette in East London. I later settled in Crystal Palace, south-east London, and in the decade since then, I have focused on writing and editing features, mainly on a freelance basis, for a variety of national newspapers and magazines, including: The Guardian, the Daily Mirror, Prima, Best, Woman, Chat and Chat it’s fate.

I write in a variety of different styles and on many different subjects, including world news, travel, crime, health, spirituality and relationships. I also have experience of creative writing and write fiction in my spare time.

Lisa—Typesetter & Book Cover Designer

Lisa BlannLisa offers over fifteen years of experience designing, illustrating and art working for top-tier marketing, communications and design agencies, as well as many individuals and start-ups; She has excellent project-management skills, and a great eye for detail. This has given her an established background where she can apply her knowledge to new assignments, whatever the industry sector.

Her creative design and artwork background is varied and diverse, and has covered many areas including medical marketing, book cover design, children’s product design, magazine art direction, marketing and PR.

She prides herself on the fact that she always delivers projects, however diverse, to an extremely high standard, and has a high volume of repeat work and endorsements due to this. She carefully considers each and every project to make sure she produces agency standard results with a personal touch.

Based on the South Coast of England, near Brighton, Lisa has worked with clients based all over the UK, and internationally from Australia, the USA and South Africa.

She is highly experienced in the Adobe CC suite (InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, Acrobat), and is a confident, enthusiastic, and hardworking colleague of the Book Refinery team.

Lisa is an independent creative professional and designer for print.

Click here to enquire about working one to one with Alexa Whitten as your book coach, or call us on 02392 378625 and ask for an initial free consultation with Alexa to discuss your book project in more detail.

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