The RNA is delighted to announce that this year’s New Writers’ Scheme is open to new members from February.
New Writers’ Scheme
The RNA is pleased to welcome unpublished writers of romantic fiction in all genres into its unique New Writers’ Scheme. Members of the New Writers’ Scheme are able to participate in all the RNA’s activities and events, and are able to submit one manuscript of an unpublished novel for critique each year. The scheme opens in February each year and can accept only 250 members.
Membership costs £210 per annum and boasts many great benefits.
- Manuscript appraisal from a published author of one full-length work of romantic fiction
- Access to both regional and online RNA chapters
- Access to RNA Facebook groups, including a dedicated NWS group
- Free access to the RNA’s digital magazine, Romance Matters
- RNA newsletter with all our latest news
- Exclusive RNA member discounts with partner organisations
- Access to our exclusive members’ area
- Discounted events tickets
- Discounted tickets to the RNA Conference, with instalments available for payment
- One 1-2-1 entry package at RNA Conference
The membership fee of £210 allows unpublished authors to take part in all RNA activities and also submit the manuscript of a full-length novel for appraisal. The New Writers’ Scheme organiser sends each new writer a membership pack giving details on how and when to submit the manuscript.
The organiser has a team of readers who are authors with extensive publishing histories in various types of romantic novel. The manuscripts are sent to an appropriate reader who provides a report that may include, for example, comments on plotting, characterisation and structure.
The reports are intended to be honest and constructive suggestions from a published novelist – they point out flaws but also offer advice based on experience.
Please note that this is a scheme for romantic novels: works where romantic elements play a key role in the story. The readers cannot comment on non-romance genres. We are also unable to provide critiques of books aimed specifically at the US market, or books that are longer than 100,000 words.
The organiser will advise and support authors whose report indicates that their novel is ready, or almost ready, to be submitted to a publisher or agent.
If a manuscript is entered into the NWS, then gains a publishing contract and is released as the NWS member’s debut novel, it may be eligible for the Joan Hessayon New Writers’ Scheme Award. Any queries regarding this award should be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org
General NWS queries should be directed to email@example.com
Praise for the NWS
The NWS gave me the confidence, motivation and insight I needed to pursue an agent and traditional publishing contract. My readers – all three of them – were thoughtful, sensitive and incredibly helpful in their reports and I wouldn’t be where I am now without them! If you’re considering joining the RNA and the NWS, don’t hesitate for a second! It’s wonderful!
I graduated from the NWS in 2019. Thanks to the scheme, I became a published author with Hera Books at the age of 67, and am now working on my fifth novel. I got my publisher through the RNA Conference 121s and haven’t looked back!
I can honestly say I don’t think I would be a published author without the RNA’s NWS. I had read a couple of ‘how to write’ books but my reader picked out very specific examples from my own work to show how I was failing to do justice to my story. Once the lightbulb went on in my head I was able to edit my own work and I went from standard one-line rejection letters to two offers of representation, signed with my agent and landed a two-book deal with Orion Dash.
I submitted my debut novel to the NWS in 2014 and it was published in 2015. I’m now working on my 19th novel, have a million sales under my belt, an RNA Award on my shelf and I’m a Sunday Times Bestseller! The NWS gave me the confidence to take my first on the path to publication and I haven’t looked back!
I graduated the New Writers’ Scheme almost ten years ago and can honestly say life has never been the same since. Although I graduated with a small publisher I was soon to meet my agent, and not long after sign the first of many contracts with Pan Macmillan. Being a member of the NWS pushed me to meet deadlines for my yearly manuscript appraisals along with meeting other members who I’d admired for years.
Being part of the RNA’s New Writers’ Scheme for three years was an invaluable part of my journey to publication. The constructive feedback was helpful and insightful, and being part of the scheme gave me belief in my writing abilities and the confidence to submit to publishers.
Do you have an ambition to write romance but haven’t yet started work on your story? Our new Aspiring Writers membership could be just what you need.
If you are not able to secure a place on the scheme, don’t forget that non-members are welcome to attend many RNA events or to take RNA Learning courses.