Two Manchester Met writers have been inducted as Royal Society of Literature (RSL) Fellows in recognition of their outstanding creative and cultural achievements.

It was revealed on October 5, Professor Monique Roffey and Malika Booker are the latest Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU) academics to be elected to an exclusive list of the country’s most influential literary figures.

Manchester met writers in the Royal Society

These academics join Professor Jean Sprackland (2021), Professor Andrew McMillan and Visiting Teaching Fellow Shirley May (2020) from Manchester Met at the RSL’s largest-ever induction event for fellows elected during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Costa Book Of The Year
Photo by Ian Gavan/Getty Images for Costa Book of the Year

The inductions further cement Manchester Metropolitan’s creative strengths, particularly in the fields of creative writing and poetry. Other Fellows include Professor Carol Ann Duffy (1999), Professor Michael Symmons Roberts (2014), and Dr Helen Mort (2018).

Professor Roffey said: ‘Being invited to be a Fellow of the RSL is a huge honour. Not only is it an acknowledgement of my career and work, but it means I can also make myself more helpful to others. I’m delighted.”

Booker added: ‘It is a joy to have been elected by peers and awarded this distinguished honour for my creative and cultural contribution to British literature.

‘There was such gravitas to signing my name in the RSL roll book featuring signatures from historical literary greats and using Jean Rhys’ pen. This was a proud moment for me as a Caribbean British writer and my fellow peers being inducted alongside me. I would particularly like to congratulate my colleagues Professor Monique Roffey and Jean Sprackland.’

Royal Society of Literature Requirements

Founded in 1820, the RSL is Britain’s national charity for the advancement of literature. It acts as a voice for the value of literature, honouring and supporting emerging and established writers whilst creating a bridge between authors and audiences to engage as many people as possible with the breadth of UK literature.

To be nominated, writers must have published or produced two works of “outstanding literary merit”, and nominations must be made by two fellows or honorary fellows.

Professor Roffey has written seven novels, including the multi-award-winning The Mermaid of Black Conch which was named Costa Book of the Year in 2020.

Booker is an award-winning poet, writer and multi-disciplinary artist who won a Forward Prize for Best Single Poem in 2020.

New inductees sign their names in the RSL roll book alongside the luminaries elected over the past 200 years, using a pen from the charity’s permanent collection. The RSL’s pens are from some of the most historically influential UK writers including Charles Dickens, George Eliot, T.S. Eliot and Lord Byron.