Romance Writers of America Academic Grant Program Accepting Submissions 

August 24, 2020 

HOUSTON—The Romance Writers of America’s (RWA) Academic Research Grant competition is accepting proposal submissions through October 1, 2020. 

The annual competition, which has been in place since 2005 and helped fund more than 25 projects, seeks to develop and support academic research devoted to genre romance novels, writers, and readers. RWA awards up to $5,000 to one or more recipients to go toward direct research costs associated with their project. 

"Romance novels speak to a fundamental human need to make connections, to form relationships, to love and be loved. The scholars who examine the texts, the authors, the readers, and the industry at large help us learn about our society and ourselves,” RWA President Alyssa Day said. “We are pleased to help facilitate the critical study of and contribute to the cultural conversation around the romance genre through the RWA Academic Grant program."

Proposals in interdisciplinary and cross-disciplinary studies are welcome. Black, Indigenous, and scholars of other minoritized backgrounds who do research on romance novels, writers, and readers are strongly encouraged to apply for this grant.

Proposals will be reviewed by a committee of academics with doctorates who will make recipient recommendations to the RWA Board of Directors. Decisions will be announced in early 2021. 

The 2020 RWA Academic Grant recipients are Dr. Diane L. Velasquez, Dr. Jennifer Campbell-Meier, and Dr. Diana Hodge for “Australasian Librarians’ Perceptions of Romance Readers and Novels: A Mixed Methods Study” and Angela Maria Hart for “The Romance Genre Fandom in the Digital Age: E-reading the Romance.” 

More information, including submission guidelines and eligibility requirements, can be found at


Press Contact: Jessie Edwards, 
Grant Committee Contact: 

Romance Writers of America® (RWA) is a nonprofit trade association whose mission is to advance the professional and common business interests of career-focused romance writers through networking and advocacy and by increasing public awareness of the romance genre. RWA works to support the efforts of its members to earn a living, to make a full-time career out of writing romance—or a part-time one that generously supplements their main income.