Harlequin created the Romance Includes You Mentorship in 2019 to reach out to writers in underrepresented communities and bring more diverse voices and stories to romance readers. This program gives unpublished romance writers the chance to work one-on-one with a Harlequin editor for a year to prepare their romance novel for publication, plus a writing grant and an offer to publish the completed book.
The mentorship program continued in 2021 with the Love to Write competition from Mills & Boon. Love to Write invited submissions from unpublished romance writers from underrepresented ethnic backgrounds in UK and Ireland. Applications were received until September 2021 and a winner was announced in March 2022.
2022 Winner – Faye Acheampong’s winning entry to the Love to Write competition will be published in Harlequin Romance in North America and Mills & Boon’s True Love series in fall 2023. Faye also receives a grant to support her writing and will be mentored by a Harlequin editor in the UK.
2020 Winner – Sera Taíno’s submission was selected from among 11 finalists and over 160 submissions in the inaugural Romance Includes You Mentorship. She completed a 12-month mentorship with a New York-based Harlequin editor and her debut, A Delicious Dilemma, is published by Harlequin Special Edition.
Harlequin is committed to publishing diverse and inclusive voices so that readers see themselves reflected in the books we publish.