Competition Time – DA Summer Reads!

Calling all women’s fiction authors! We are thrilled to announce our Darley Anderson Summer Reads Competition!

The Darley Anderson Agency is on the lookout for the next bestseller in commercial women’s fiction. We’re talking sweeping romances, contemporary rom-coms, LGBTQ+ love stories, tear-jerking sagas, period dramas, world driven romantic fantasy fiction, and books that will have readers falling in love and flipping to the next page.

As agents of top quality entertainment fiction, we are only interested in the very best commercial reads that will appeal to all, from avid book lovers, to the occasion holiday reader. If you think you’ve written something that fits this description, we want to hear from you!

The prize for THREE lucky short listees will be written feedback from our team. Then the overall winner will receive a one-on-one feedback session with our agents. If we’re a match made in heaven, who knows where it could lead…

If you’ve written something that fits this description, this is your chance to impress us!

The competition will be held in two stages: firstly we’d like to see a covering letter including your pitch, synopsis and first 3 chapters. We’ll then whittle it down to a shortlist of our favourite submissions, at which stage we’ll request a full manuscript. So, please be ready to send us your full text should you be invited to the next stage.

All entries should be sent to from Monday 11th July until Monday 25th July. Any entries made outside of these dates will not be considered.

Dates for the Diary

The competition opens on Monday 11th July and will close on Monday 25th July.

The Shortlist will be announced on Monday 15th August.

The Winners will be announced on Tuesday 30th August.

Terms and Conditions

  • Novels must be your original work and submitted in English.
  • Novels must be unpublished.
  • Writers who have accepted an offer of publication for the submitted novel are not eligible.
  • Entrants must be unagented.
  • Entrants must have full copyright to the submitted work.
  • By entering, the winner agrees to an interview which may be published on our site and in any media for publicity purposes.
  • We are UNABLE to accept submissions of novellas, short story collections, poetry or scripts/screenplays.
  • Please submit your work via email with your covering letter (with pitch), synopsis and opening chapters attached in either Word document or PDF format. Unfortunately we cannot accept submissions with links to an author’s work, or attachments with other software (e.g. Pages, Dropbox etc.).
  • Please DO NOT submit your synopsis and chapters in the body of the email. Please attach as separate documents.
  • Submissions may not be altered after entry.
  • Entries which do not comply with the competition rules may be disqualified.

Unfortunately we cannot reply to all authors to confirm receipt of your submission. If you would like confirmation that your submission has been received please include a read receipt in your email.


Can I send multiple entries?

No, please only send one submission. We encourage all entrants to send us what you believe to be your strongest novel. We also ask that you not send us a novel that you have already submitted to us, be that previously or a submission that’s currently under review.

If my book was included in the #PitchtoDA twitter event, can I enter?

If we liked your pitch and your work is currently under review we ask you not to resubmit through the competition.

If your tweet was not selected/liked then you are welcome to enter it into the competition. Do bear in mind though, that we are looking for a strong pitch, so it might be something to work on before you submit to us.

What if my book doesn’t fit within women’s fiction?

This competition is specifically for women’s fiction/romance submissions. If you feel that you book more closely aligns with a different genre then we ask you to submit that directly to the appropriate agent under the normal submission guidelines.

Please note this competition is not open to YA fiction.


We hope to hold similar events for different genres, so if your work doesn’t fit the current guidelines then keep an eye out for further announcements later in the year.

I have submitted to the Darley Anderson Agency before. Can I submit something new?

Yes. As long as your new novel is unpublished we would love to read it.

Can I submit if I don’t live in the UK?

Absolutely. This a competition for debut writers of any nationality and country of residence. Pleas note, we are only able to consider unpublished novels written in English so bare this in mind when submitting. Unfortunately, we are unable to consider novels that have been published in international markets.

If my book was previously self-published can I enter?

Unfortunately we cannot consider work that is, or has previously been, self-published.

Will I receive feedback on my entry?

Unfortunately we aren’t able to provide feedback for all entrants.

How will I know if you have received my submission?

You will receive a confirmation email once we receive your submission. Please do check your junk/spam folder if it doesn’t come through immediately.  Please do also include a read receipt to your submission if you would like.

If you have not received a confirmation of receipt email do get in touch. We are unable to provide any feedback by phone so please do only get in touch if you HAVE NOT received an email.

When will the winner be announced?

The Shortlist will be announced on Monday 15th August and the winner on Tuesday 30th August.

Can I post my entry?

Unfortunately, we are only able to consider email submissions.

Do I have to have a completed manuscript to enter?

All entrants must have a full manuscript prior to submitting.


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