Through WriteNow we want to find new writers with different stories to tell. This means:

  • We're looking for new writers - so you won't have published a book in the last 10 years through a commercial publishing house. You also won't have a literary agent or publishing contract at the moment.
  • You'll come from a background that is currently under-represented in books and publishing. We'll ask you to tell us in your own words what this means for you. For example, you could be from a socio-economically marginalised background, identify as BAME (Black, Asian, Minority Ethnic) or LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer), or have a disability.
  • You'll also be at least 18 years old and be resident in the UK. We'll also ask you to submit your manuscript in English.



Creativity is rooted in difference: in the unexpected connections among the broadest variety of people and ideas, communities and worlds. WriteNow is a wonderful way to ensure new talented voices are heard." Malcolm Gladwell, author of The Tipping Point, Blink, Outliers, What The Dog Saw and David and Goliath



About your writing

We know that great stories come in all shapes and sizes and we would love applications from writers in all genres, including fiction and non-fiction, adult and children's. We want to hear your perspective, in your own words, whether you’re writing serious non-fiction about personal development or penning the next The Girl on the Train thriller.

Fiction writers   

We would be particularly excited to get applications from writers in the following genres: commercial fiction, women’s fiction, crime and thriller, romance, or science fiction. While we aren’t accepting poetry submissions, we would be happy to receive verse novels.

Children’s writers

We think it’s particularly important for children and young people to see themselves reflected in the stories they read. We would especially like to receive applications from people writing picture books for young children or writing for 9-12 year olds.

Non-fiction writers    

We would love to see books that help change people's lives for the better. This could be in fields such as personal development, business, or health and fitness; writing that promotes an understanding of the world through history, social commentary or politics, or enhances happiness by exploring the natural world, philosophy or creativity. We don't expect non-fiction writers to have a fully formed manuscript to apply - you can submit your proposal and a sample of writing.

Please note that we're not looking for submissions in cookery, graphic novels or poetry this time around. 

Word counts

To apply for WriteNow, you should be actively working on a manuscript for a book that could be ready to publish in the next one to two years. This means for fiction or children’s/ Young Adult writers you should have written at least 20,000 words. Don’t worry if you’re still making changes, editing, or writing the final few chapters.

We don’t expect non-fiction writers to have a fully formed manuscript to apply – you can submit your proposal, which should be an outline of the structure and contents of your book – together with a sample of writing.

Tom Weldon, CEO of Penguin Random House UK, addresses writers at Bristol's WriteNow workshop