Thursday, 1 May 2014

Encouraging support for new writers

It’s always good to see new writers acknowledged - in my opinion, the big names of the publishing world get far too much attention at the expense of those lower down the ladder.
So, I was delighted to see that the UK Romantic Novelists’ Association (RNA) has announced the shortlist for its prestigious Joan Hessayon Award for new writers with no fewer than seventeen contenders from all over the UK and abroad.
Pia Fenton, RNA Chairman, said: “As always, the list of contenders shows the incredible diversity of RNA authors and I am absolutely delighted that there is such a bumper crop of graduates from our New Writers’ Scheme this year. It shows that romantic fiction continues to go from strength to strength and that our mentoring really works."
The New Writers' Scheme has been run by the RNA since 1962 and is unique among professional writing associations. It aims to encourage fresh talent in the writing of romantic novels that reflect all aspects of love and life, contemporary or historical.
Manuscripts submitted under the scheme are from unpublished authors and are read by an experienced writer or editor who provides feedback. Any manuscript that is subsequently published as a debut novel is eligible for the Joan Hessayon Award. All eligible books are judged by a panel of RNA members who are already published authors.
The Award will be presented at the RNA Summer Party on 22nd May at the Royal Over-Seas League, Park Place, London. It is sponsored by gardening expert Dr. David Hessayon OBE, in honour of his late wife Joan, who was a longstanding member of the RNA and a great supporter of its New Writers’ Scheme.
The full shortlist for 2014 is:
Celia J Anderson Sweet Proposal Piatkus
Elaine Everest Gracie's War Pulse
Helena Fairfax The Silk Romance MuseItUp
Sue Fortin United States of Love Harper Impulse
Kathryn Freeman Too Charming Choc Lit
Jessica Gilmore The Return of Mrs Jones Harlequin Mills & Boon
Laura E James Truth or Dare? Choc Lit
Jennie Jones The House on Burra Burra Lane Harlequin Australia
Alison May Sweet Nothing Choc Lit
Teresa F. Morgan Plus One is a Lucky Number Harper Impulse
Jane O'Reilly Once a Bad Girl Escape
Helen Phifer The Ghost House Carina UK
Jill Steeples Desperately Seeking Heaven Carina UK
Jo Thomas The Oyster Catcher Accent Press
Lin Treadgold Goodbye Henrietta Street Safkhet Publishing
Susan Willis Yes Chef, No Chef Endeavour
Jennifer Young Thank You For the Music Tirgearr

John Dean

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