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Meet the Romantic Novelists’ Association

By Jean Fullerton ( this article can be seen in Write On! 2

Hi, I’m Jean Fullerton, author of fifteen East London novels but today I’m wearing my Romantic Novelists’ Association’s Educational Officer hat. You may not have heard of the Romantic Novelists’ Association or if you have you might think of us as a bunch of ladiesthatlunch in pink feather boas. However, nothing could be further from the truth 

The Romantic Novelists’ Association, which celebrate its 60th anniversary next year, is a dynamic writing organisation with over 1000 members. This includes editor, agents, book bloggers and authors both traditionally and independently published, who write across a wide spectrum of romantic genres. However, it is a particular section of our membership I want to talk to you about; our three hundred yet to-be-published authors who are members of the New Writers’ Scheme.  

 The New Writers’ Scheme is unique, and members of the scheme are able to participate in all the RNA’s activities such as our local chapters, workshops, annual conference and other events but most importantly they are able to submit one manuscript of an unpublished novel for full critique each year. 

The Organiser has a team of more than sixty readers who are multi-published authors in various types of romantic novels. The manuscripts are sent to an appropriate reader who provides a report that may include, for example, comments on plotting, characterisation and structure.  

The membership fee of £135 (£145 for members outside the EU) and applications are open on 1st January each year. The New Writers’ Scheme Organiser sends each new writer a membership pack giving details on how and when to submit the manuscript.  

Two years ago as part of our widening participation initiative we introduced a number of  New Writers’ Scheme bursaries to encourage members from under-represented groups include, BAME authors, LGBTQIA+ authorsauthors low incomesfrom working class backgrounds, and authors with disabilities to apply for places on the New Writers’ Scheme.  

We also recognise that while considerably less than a professional critique, which is close to a £1000 at current rates, we recognise the membership fee is a sizeable amount, so we are introducing an instalment scheme for 2020.    

There are many well know authors such as Katie Fford, Julie Cohen and Sue Moorcroft who started their writing careers as New Writers’ Scheme members and each year we have at least a dozen who are accepted for publication.  

Writers need other writers for support when the characters in our WIP aren’t acting as they should, when the plot has us tied up in knots and when a rejection lands in our inbox.  

I’ve been a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association for fifteen years and have made such great friends, learnt so much and been so supported in my writing career I can only urge all of you writing any sort of romantic novel to join us.    

Romantic Novelists’ Association –



Twitter:  @JeanFullerton 


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Writers need other writers for support when the characters in our WIP aren’t acting as they should, when the plot has us tied up in knots and when a rejection lands in our inbox.