The 2020 Rosemary is now closed for entries. Finalists will be announced in June.

Welcome to YARWA’s 2020 Rosemary Contest!

Welcome to the Rosemary Award for unpublished manuscripts, sponsored by the Young Adult Romance Writers of America. The Rosemary is named in honor of YARWA’s founding president and young adult author, Rosemary Clement-Moore. We’re excited to offer a contest devoted strictly to Young Adult and New Adult fiction. With three final judges per entry – an agent and two editors – your manuscript will get unprecedented exposure and consideration.


Available categories to enter:

  • Contemporary and Realistic YA
  • Suspense and Thriller YA
  • Paranormal YA
  • Speculative YA
  • New Adult

Check out the list of final judges – powerhouses in the Young Adult and New Adult publishing industry.

YA Contemporary and Realistic

Agent: Jessica Errera , Jane Rotrosen Agency
Editor: Allison Moore, Bloomsbury Children’s Books
Editor: Rachel Diebel, St. Martin’s Press

YA Speculative

Agent: Cate Hart, Harvey Klinger Literary Agency
Editor: Lydia Sharp, Entangled Publishing
Editor: Stephanie Guerdan, Harper Collins Children’s Books

YA Suspense and Thriller

Agent: Marlo Berliner, Jennifer DeChiara Literary Agency
Editor: Ashley Hearn, Page Street Publishing
Editor: Claire Stetzer, Bloomsbury Children’s Books

YA Paranormal

Agent: Kat Enright, The Seymour Agency
Editor: Wendy Loggia, Random House
Editor: Kristin Rens, Balzer and Bray – Harper Collins

New Adult

Agent: Abigail Frank, Sanford J. Greenburger Associates
Editor: Anna Roberto, Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group
Editor: Jennie Conway, St. Martins Press/Wednesday Books

Questions? Please contact our Contest Coordinator, Tara Kennedy at

NOTE: As long as your payment and entry form are time stamped before April 3rd (i.e. can be any time on April 3rd or before), your entry will be accepted into the contest. Our coordinators will be working to make sure you get the submission information for your entry as quickly as possible.

Contest Rules


All authors, regardless of publishing status, are welcome to enter this contest. All authors must be at least 18 years of age.
Submitted manuscripts must be new, original YA or NA fiction that has not been published, self-published, or contracted to be published. Manuscripts must have a word count of at least 40,000 words.
Authors may enter as many manuscripts as they choose, but each manuscript may be entered in only one category.
Each category must have a minimum of 5 entries to remain a part of this contest. YARWA reserves the right to close a category if we receive less than 5 entries or more than 50 entries in that category.



YA Contemporary and Realistic – Teenage characters set in believable times.
YA Suspense and Thriller – Teenage characters in a story where action or danger is at the forefront, in a realistic setting.
YA Paranormal – Teenage characters who live in a world that includes elements of the paranormal or supernatural (will include supernatural contemporary and urban fantasy, and any dystopian containing paranormal elements). YA Speculative – Teenage characters who live in a world with science fiction elements, futuristic settings, non-paranormal dystopian, and fantasy settings.
New Adult – Any manuscript featuring protagonists aged between 18 and 25, of all heat levels and subgenres. Please ask questions regarding the magic vs. speculative split in the Paranormal/Speculative categories. Due to the large number of entries last year, we are attempting to keep similar books together.

Please feel free ask questions regarding the magic vs. speculative split in the Paranormal/Speculative categories.

Entry Format

  • First 25 pages of manuscript
  • Double-spaced, 1 inch margins, 12 point font, Times New Roman or Courier New.
  • Do not include the author’s name in the manuscript.
  • Please include in your header: TITLE / Category / Page # (Do not include your name on any page of the entered manuscript.)
  • Document must be in .rtf/.doc/.docx format.
  • Entrants will receive email confirmation of their submission from the respective category coordinator.


  • First-round judging will be done by three trained judges. YARWA will make every effort to have a published author judge in every group.
  • The lowest of the three scores will be dropped.
  • Judges are allowed to enter a category they are NOT judging.
  • Final Judges will include at least one editor and one agent in each category.
  • Please note that all decisions of the judges are final.


  • $15 members/$25 non-members
  • Payment via PayPal only (available starting February 1st, when the contest opens)

Don’t forget: in order to get the reduced member rate, you must be a member of both YARWA and RWA.


  • Contest Entry deadline – April 3rd, 2020 11:59pm, EST
  • Finalists announced – The week of June 1, 2020
  • Winners will be announced in July at YARWA’s Day of YA event during RWA’s Annual conference in San Francisco, California.


  • All finalists will receive a website badge, finalists listing in RWR, and a free YARWA class of their choice.
  • All winners and finalists will be announced on the YARWA website and at YARWA’s Day of YA event during RWA’s Annual conference in San Francisco, California.

First Round Judges

Become a part of our fifth annual Rosemary Contest! YARWA needs qualified and conscientious individuals to judge our contest. If you are interested in volunteering, click the link below to complete the judge’s application.