About us

Our passion is history.  We are authors, publishers and agents of historical writing, both fiction and non-fiction and we have created this Association, the website, the forum and our various literary events and dinners in order to provide professional and social support to our members, and to create opportunities on line and in person for our members to meet with readers, re-enactors and historians of all ages and eras who share our fasciation with, and absorption in, all things historical.

If you're a published author, a publisher or an agent, please consider joining us: criteria are laid out below. If you're a reader, come along to our events and literary festivals, and, of course, join our forum: this is our gateway to the best of historical writing: fiction and non-fiction: If you care about history, this is the place to start.


In early October 2010, a group of writers and publishers joined together to form the Historical Writers' Association – the HWA.

This grew from the belief that we as historical writers need to have the same kind of professional body run by professional writers for professional writers (and their agents and publishers and booksellers) to sustain, promote and support each other and our work in the way that the Crime Writers' Association provides professional and social support for its members.

To that end, we designed this website, with a forum for members to discuss all aspects of their work. Our first President, MIchael Morpurgo saw us through to our Incorporation in July 2014. Our current President, and recipient of the first HWA/Harrogate History Festival LIfetime Achievement Award, is Bernard Cornwell.

Festivals, Events and Libraries: We have a partnership with Harrogate International Festivals and aim to create the biggest and best historical indoor literary festival in the Harrogate History Festival.  Run first in 2013, this has grown year on year, following the model of the highly successful Theakston's Old Peculiar Crime Festival in July.

In addition, we have a presence at the Thames Valley History Festival, the Herstmonceaux mediaeval festival and dozens of other smaller festivals around the country.   During October and November we organised dozens of events in libraries and book shops for our members, as part of our ambition to become a trusted partner of these essential institutions.

Magazine: We have our own online magazine, Historia, which aims ot promote our authors to the widest possible online audience. It is created and edited by Vanora Bennett, Imogen Robertson and Elizabeth Fremantle.

Prizes: In 2014, we took over full management of what is now the HWA Crown for Debut Fiction: the shortlist ia announced at the AGM in June, and the winner at the Harrogate History Festival in October. Prize winners to date have been: Robert Wilton, M L Stedman and Kate Worsley.

Finally we continue to organise dinners and drinks evenings for our members, and also to increase our online presence ever further.

If you're a writer and would like to join, our 'Aims of Association' are as follows:

The Historical Writers' Association: an association of both historical fiction and non-fiction who have work published by recognised publishers, plus their agents and publishers. Membership shall be limited to those authors who have work published in the last 5 years, although others may be admitted at the discretion of the committee.

The Association exists to promote, sustain and raise the profile of historical writing. Membership of the association will be granted to all writers, agents and publisher staff who, in the opinion of the HWA committee, have demonstrated, either through their writing or their role in bringing such material into print, their commitment to this ideal.

For the avoidance of doubt, 'historical' shall be defined as being beyond 35 years from the point of application

Thus we are open to writers of fiction and non-fiction alike – anyone who makes a living out of publishing books in which the core matter is historical – plus their agents and publishers, and booksellers.

If you think you'd like to join us, or know someone who does, please mail our Membership Secretary on: tony.riches@btinternet.com giving your name, details of your recent books and your publisher.


Since our Incorporation as a limited company in July 2014, all those who join become MEMBERS of the company, with a limited liability of £1.  

Please note: by subscribing to be a member of the Historical Writers’ Association you agree to our Articles of Association, as agreed at the 2014 AGM.

The Articles are available upon request from our administrator

We have three tiers of membership:


 Full Membership is open to persons or organisations based in the United Kingdom who have within the five years prior to first applying to become a Member:


1.1.1   had at least one full-length novel, novel-length collection of short stories or non-fiction work with a predominantly historical theme published by a recognised publisher; or


1.1.2    written and had produced by a recognised industry professional at least one feature film script or a number of shorter screenplays with a predominantly historical theme, equivalent in total to a full book-length work; or


1.1.3    written and had produced by a recognised industry professional at least one full-length play with a predominantly historical  theme, produced in a recognised industry professional theatre; or


1.1.4    written a script or scripts with a historical crime theme which has been broadcast on national radio or television and equivalent in total to a full book-length work.


1.2         Associate Membership is open to persons or organisations based in the United Kingdom who:


1.2.1    are not writers but are in their profession or occupation engaged or associated with historical writing which includes but is not limited to publishers, editors, literary agents, reviewers, booksellers and those connected with the production, publication or broadcast of any Members' work, whether in print, on stage, film, radio or television; or


1.2.2    are civil partners, spouses or family members of a deceased Member.


1.3         Overseas Membership is open to persons or organisations who not based in the United Kingdom but otherwise fulfil the requirements of Full or Associate Membership.


1.4         Honorary Membership shall be open to such persons based in the United Kingdom as are elected by the Management Committee to be Honorary Members, such Honorary Membership shall subject to Article 4.9 last for the lifetime of such Honorary Member.


Annual subscriptions stand currently at £65 per annum for FULL, £50 for Overseas membership, and £40 for Associate members

We accept payment by BACS, Paypal or cheque - of course you can set up a Standing Order if you choose.


We look forward to meeting you online, in the flesh and in the pages of our books



The current HWA Committee is as follows:

Manda Scott - Chair

Imogen Roberston - Treasurer

Tony Riches - Membership Secretary

Ben Kane

Rob Low

Edwin Thomas

Liz Fremantle

Vanora Bennett




The HWA has formed a mutual association with the Society of Authors whereby our members receive special deals on joining the other organisation.

SoA members who wish to join the HWA can do so at a discount of 25% on their first year’s subscription. Please visit http://www.societyofauthors.org/organisation-membership and log in as a member to find the offer code, then apply to the HWA by the usual route (contact Tony Riches) and be prepared to give your SoA ID number.
HWA members who wish to join the SoA receive fifteen months for the price of twelve in the first year of joining (subject to eligibility criteria). To receive the code to take advantage of this offer please contact Tony Riches . You can join the SoA online and find further details at www.societyofauthors.org.