Yesterday evening the world of romantic fiction was out in force for the Romantic Novelist’s Association® yearly red carpet event the RoNA Awards, sponsored by Goldsboro Books. The party (sorry, ceremony!) held once again at the Gladstone Library, 1 Whitehall Place, London was abuzz more than ever! Romance writers, agents, editors, readers and guests were ever more numerous, the lively throng of gossip, congratulations, greetings (it’s such a great place to connect and reconnect with friends and colleagues in the romance industry) we could barely hear ourselves speak as we entered the room and enjoyed a glass or two before the ceremony! The energy and excitement was at its peak – evidence if it were needed that the romance writing industry, supported by its readers, is thriving.
Inhabitants (staff) from Romance HQ, and our authors were no exception as we filled three tables (adorned with flowers, chocolate hearts, wine and tasty canapes – the RNA had put on a wonderfully glamorous affair, as always). Of course, we were there to support and congratulate our wonderful shortlisted authors, Kate Hardy, Virginia Heath, Louisa Heaton, Christy McKellen and Scarlet Wilson in the RoNA Rose category and Jenny Oliver in the Contemporary Romantic Novel category, and to celebrate the wonderful world of Romance that we all feel so passionate about – and the passion in the room last night was palpable!
The evening started with an inspiring introduction from President and novelist Katie Fforde, followed by Chair of the RNA Eileen Ramsay. MC Jane Wenham-Jones and guest presenter Prue Leith – celebrated novelist, cook, restaurateur and TV presenter – then ran the show which covered seven categories, including a brand new one for the Paranormal Romantic Novel.
Highlights of the evening included the Lifetime Achievement Awards given to celebrated novelist Barbara Erskine – (can you believe it’s thirty years since the ground breaking LADY OF HAY was published)! and the wonderful Adele Parks.
The overall Goldboro Books Romantic Novel of the Year 2017 was won by the winner of the Young Adult Romantic Novel category Sophia Bennet with her novel LOVE SONG.
But the pinnacle of the evening for us was of course when the lovely, multi-nominated, multi-talented Scarlet Wilson won the RoNA Rose Award for CHRISTMAS IN THE BOSS’S CASTLE. A heartrending and uplifting novel about a brooding and bereaved Scottish Millionaire whose life, and Christmas, is transformed by the chambermaid sent to set up his penthouse. It is part of our MAIDS IN CHELSEA linked series from Mills & Boon® Cherish™ and Scarlet has written almost thirty fabulous romance novels for both Mills & Boon® Cherish™ series and our Medical Romance™ series.
At the end of the night, such was the sense of joy and jubilation that no-one could bear to leave! Least of all the Mills & Boon authors and editors who celebrated Scarlet Wilson’s win with pink champagne in her honour (Scarlet, despite her name, just loves a glass of something pink!) and of course, lots of hugs and excitement all round.
Many congratulations Scarlet, the roses to adorn your rose bowl are on their way!
You can find a list of all the Mills & Boon winning and shortlisted books here.