I've known way before Christmas. I've known before my book was actually published way back in August that I would be a contender for the RNA's Joan Hessayon Award.
It's been really hard not to shout about this exciting bit of news!
Basically, Plus One is a Lucky Number went through the New Writers' Scheme, (as The Wedding Favour) and was my first book to get published, so it makes me eligible for the award. I found this all out when I transferred my membership from New Writers' scheme to full RNA member.
The winner will be announced at the RNA Summer Party. At first I wasn't sure if I could afford to attend, then a complimentary ticket dropped through my door, and I had no excuses. I booked my train yesterday!
Now I just need to think about a dress - ideally one that won't crinkle on the train! - and sensibly but sexy shoes (I've seen the photos at the RNA parties... there are lots of pictures of shoes!).
Fellow Harper Impulse author, Sue Fortin is also a contender, so it's going to be exciting for both of us! It will mean I get to meet my editor, Charlotte Ledger and the rest of the fabulous Harper Impulse team again.
There are seventeen in all... a record number... some names and faces I recognise from the RNA conference in 2011. Here is the list:
Celia J Anderson, Sweet Proposal, Piakus
Elaine Everest, Grace's War, Pulse
Helena Fairfax, The Silk Romance, MuseItUp
Sue Fortin, United States of Love, Harper Impulse
Kathryn Freeman, Too Charming, Choc Lit
Jessica Gilmore, The Return of Mrs Jones, Harlequin Mills & Boon
Laura E James, Truth or Dare? Choc Lit
Jennie Jones, The House on Burra Burra Lane, Harlequin Australia
Alison May, Sweet Nothing, Choc Lit
Teresa F. Morgan, Plus One is a Lucky Number, Harper Impulse
Jane O'Reilly, Once a Bad Girl, Escape
Helen Phifer, The Ghost House, Carina UK
Jill Steeples, Desperately Seeking Heaven, Carina UK
Jo Thomas, The Oyster Catcher, Accent Press
Lin Treadgold, Goodbye Henrietta Street, Safkhet Publishing
Susan Willis, Yes Chef, No Chef, Endeavour
Jennifer Young, Thank You For The Music, Tirgearr
Author photos and their books can be found here.
We're all winners as we have all had our first book published by fabulous publishers. This just is a lovely boost to our career and writing.