Highlights from the RoNA Awards

This Tuesday I had the pleasure of attending the Romantic Novelist Association‘s Awards ceremony – a wonderfully jolly evening as romance novelists, publishers and agents, gathered at the RAF Club to support the nominees, applaud the winners and salute the genre in general. This year the awards were given out by none other than TV book club royalty Richard and Judy.

You can read more about the evening and the full list of nominees and winners on the RNA website here, but as for my favourite memories from the night…

1. Seeing our lovely authors Susanna Kearsley (who flew all the way in from Canada) and Mary Nichols  – both nominated for Best Historical Romance Novel for The Rose Garden and The Kirilov Star respectively.

2. The lovely speech by Sophie Kinsella who won the Outstanding Achievement Award. And the fact that, in a room full of women, there was a general (and audible) consensus, that this award not only referred to her wonderful contribution to romantic fiction (her Shopaholic series has delighted millions of readers and I’m one of them) but also represented the fact that she has given birth to five children and yet appears to have discovered the elixir of youth.

3. The moment when the compere, author Jane Wenham-Jones, put Richard Madeley on the spot when she suggested that perhaps more romantic novels would feature in their Book Club lists in future… To which he graciously responded, “Ah. Yes. Ok. Point taken.”

4. The feeling of overwhelming support and genuine warmth eminating from all the writers towards their fellow novelists in the room. It may have been an awards ceremony, with authors competing against eachother for a prize, but you’d have thought from the genuine delight and universal whoops around the room that (and pardon the sugar-sweet cliché) everyone was a winner.  There was certainly a whole lot of love in the room. And perhaps that’s not altogether surprising… it was an evening celebrating romance, after all.

Chiara Priorelli, Publicity & Online Marketing Manager

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