40 Under 40

In 2018 the RSL is undertaking to elect 40 new Fellows under the age of 40. We are asking publishers, agents, arts administrators, writers to recommend the best young writers for nomination to Fellowship.

Guided by recommendations, we want to welcome a new generation of UK writers into the RSL. We celebrate not only our diverse literary heritage but also the best in young contemporary English language writing in Britain.

At the heart of the RSL is its Fellowship, which encompasses the most distinguished authors working in the English language; these 40 new Fellows will join our current Fellowship and with them help shape the Society’s activities.

We are seeking recommendations of writers of diverse literary forms, including writers of drama, fiction, graphic fiction, non-fiction, poetry and screenplays.

‘As someone who became an RSL Fellow a couple of years shy of my 40th birthday I know what a boost the Fellowship affords to younger writers. There is nothing quite like being recognised by other writers and asked to join their ranks.’

Kamila Shamsie FRSL, Chair of Panel

Eligibility criteria
The recommended writer must:

    • Have had published in the United Kingdom at least two substantial works (or a sufficient body of other work) in the English language considered by the nominating panel and Council to be of outstanding literary merit
    • Be under the age of 40 at 30 June 2018
    • Be a citizen of or resident in the United Kingdom at the time of recommendation

Recommendation of new Fellows
To recommend a writer for Fellowship as part of the 40 Under 40 project, please download and complete the recommendation form:

RSL 40 Under 40 Recommendation Form

The closing date for recommendations is Saturday 30 September 2017.

Your recommendation will be assessed by a panel of RSL Fellows, and the selected 40 writers will be elected by the RSL Council. The 40 Under 40 Fellows will be announced at a special event in Spring 2018, where they will sign the Society’s historic Roll Book with T S Eliot’s or Byron’s pen.

The RSL is committed to diversity in all its activities, including in its Fellowship. We are grateful to those who can complete the equal opportunities monitoring form. Information provided here will be treated in the strictest confidence.

Download the press release.