2020/01/30  |  By:   |  Features  |  

We are super excited to announce that we will be hosting a Romantic Novelists’ Association #DigitalOriginals open submission day (#RNANWSOneDay) exclusively for members of the New Writers’ Scheme, enabling authors to bypass the traditional route to publishing and submit, for the first time, directly to us.

We are inviting members of the Scheme to submit the first three chapters of their unpublished manuscript on 15th September 2020 directly to our Editorial team for consideration for #DigitalOriginals, the eBook first publishing programme that has launched the careers of, amongst others, Heidi Swain, Caroline Scott, Claire Frost, Laura Bambrey and Christina Pishiris.

The RNA New Writers’ Scheme aims to encourage fresh talent in the writing of romances and novels with romantic elements, in every genre from historical to futuristic, with characters and love stories that reflect the diversity of readers everywhere, and we are looking forward to reading submissions from members writing across all genres.

Alison May, Chair of the RNA says ”The RNA exists to support romantic novelists and our New Writers’ Scheme is central to that goal. We’re incredibly excited to be partnering with Simon & Schuster to provide this opportunity for the next generation of romantic novelists.”

Imogen Howson, Vice-Chair, of the RNA says “The Simon & Schuster #DigitalOriginals #OneDay events are some of the most exciting opportunities in unagented writers’ calendars. We’re thrilled that, for the first time, it’s being opened exclusively, in September 2020, to members of our New Writers’ Scheme. So many talented writers go through the NWS every year, and we’re watching with huge excitement to see which of them might be snapped up this time!”

Simon & Schuster Brand Development Director (Fiction) Sara-Jade Virtue says: ‘I’m immensely proud of Books and the City, which we launched 9 years ago, and especially our industry first #DigitalOriginals publishing programme and #OneDay open submission initiative. We know that sometimes the route to publishing can be a daunting, confusing and at times terrifying road, but with #OneDay, all of the usual rules and regulations are cast aside. I’m very much looking forward to working closely with the RNA again – an organisation we all admire and respect greatly – by extending our open submission day to members of their New Writers’ Scheme to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the RNA. Championing the varied and diverse work of romantic fiction authors is at the heart and soul of everything we do here at Books and the City, and I’m excited to receive submissions from their members.’

Here is some general information about our #DigitalOriginals project and our submission guidelines:

  • All you need is the synopsis for the novel, a 500 word introduction to who you are (to include your full name, postal address, telephone number and your social media details) and your first three chapters (sent as a word document attachment, double spaced).
  • All submissions (synopsis, introduction to who you are and first three chapters) must be received between the hours of 8.00am and 8.00pm on 15th September 2020.  The email account to send your submission to is bookminx@simonandschuster.co.uk. You will need to include the code that the RNA have supplied NWS members with in the subject heading of the email.  Only one entry is permitted per person.
  • If your novel is acquired by us, we will publish in digital format, which will be available across all e-tailers in the English language across the World.  You will be working with our experienced in-house team, and will be provided with a contract, full editorial input including copy editing and proof reading, an eBook jacket and a suite of marketing and publicity promotion.
  • We are not a vanity or custom publisher. #DigitalOriginals is part of the Simon & Schuster UK publishing company and your contract with us under the #DigitalOriginals project offers you the same benefits as all Simon & Schuster UK authors receive.
  • Whether you’ve been previously published or not, this is the perfect opportunity to submit your work and have a chance to be published by the award-winning, international publishing house behind #DigitalOriginals – Simon & Schuster UK Ltd.  We will consider novels that have been previously published, providing you have retained full rights, or had rights reverted back to you.
  • If we are interested in seeing more of your work, we will contact you by 15th November 2020, at which time we will ask you to send the complete novel (no less than 80,000 words, no more than 100,000) as a word document (or equivalent) double spaced.


We are committed to the goal of building a culturally diverse publishing list.  We encourage authors to submit a pitch regardless of age, race, colour, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, social circumstance or disability status.