2017 Ruby finalists

Congratulations to our 2017 Romantic Book of the Year finalists!

The official announcement of finalists – with cover art and links! –  is here at the Booktopia blog. Please share with your friends!

The finalists are:

Long Romance

Escaping Mr. Right by Avril Tremayne
Random Romance

The Grazier’s Wife by Barbara Hannay
Penguin/Michael Joseph

The War Bride by Pamela Hart
Hachette Australia

Short Romance

Breaking Good by Madeline Ash
Tule Publishing

The Most Scandalous Ravensdale by Melanie Milburne
Harlequin Mills & Boon Sexy

Unwrapping His Convenient Fiancée by Melanie Milburne
Harlequin Mills & Boon Sexy

Romantic Elements

A Kiss from Mr. Fitzgerald by Natasha Lester
Hachette Australia

Legacy of Hunters Ridge by Sarah Barrie
Harlequin MIRA

Mackenzie Crossing by Kaye Dobbie
Harlequin MIRA

Numbered by Amy Andrews and Ros Baxter
Harlequin MIRA

Romance Novella

Santa and the Saddler by Cathryn Hein

Swept Away by Fiona Marsden

Unexplored by Anna Hackett

Winners will be announced at the Love Gone Wild Conference in Brisbane in August.

In addition to the four Ruby section winners – Long Romance, Short Romance, Romance Novella and Romantic Elements – all finalists are now being read by our final judges to decide one overall Romantic Book of the Year winner.


Ruby update

As you may have seen in the December issue of Hearts Talk, some exciting developments are happening for the 2017 Ruby, our contest for books published in 2016.

New sections! This year, we’ll be reducing the number of sections to four. Entry numbers in the Short Sexy and Short Sweet sections have reduced enough for these to be combined, to make four roughly even sections.

The 2017 sections will be: Long Romance, Short Romance, Romance Novella and Romantic Elements.

If you’re unsure where your book should go, check the Ruby rules/conditions on the website for descriptions. If your book fits more than one section, it’s your choice where it goes.

New judging! For the first time, we’ll be presenting an overall Romantic Book of the Year award, judged by a panel of industry experts. Here’s how it’ll work:

  • First round judging will run as usual
  • Finalists and winners for each section will be decided and announced in the usual way
  • All finalists will be read by our industry panel, who will select one overall winner (in addition to the section winners).

Who are the industry judges? For 2017, our panel will comprise:

  • Kat Mayo, writer, reviewer and host of the romance podcast Heart to Heart
  • Danielle Binks, writer, reviewer and chair of LoveOzYA
  • Hayley Shephard, Marketing Assistant and Promotions Coordinator at Booktopia

Many thanks to these three outstanding romance advocates for their involvement.

New finalists! Our final judges are hardworking professionals who are donating their time and effort to RWA. They will read all the finalist books in their own time. In order to keep their workload manageable, and ensure the judging is fair and timely, we’re reducing the number of finalists per section to three.

More new judging! We’ll also be introducing writer judges to the Ruby.

Our reader judges do a wonderful job and keep the contest market-relevant, but we believe RWA members have a lot to offer as judges too—and we’re keen to keep judge demographics as diverse and inclusive as we can, to ensure all subgenres and styles are catered for.

To this end, every entrant will be judging one or two books, taken from a section they haven’t entered. Information about the judging procedure will be provided when you enter. It’s easy and fun, and you’ll be given plenty of time—you might discover a new favourite!

New entry formats! Digital entries make the contest process faster, more cost-effective and easier for judges, which results in better judging for us. So if your book has a DRM-free digital edition (.pdf, .epub or .mobi), you’ll be entering that.

Print entries will be accepted only from those authors who don’t have access to a usable digital edition.

Usable means you need to be able to upload your ebook to our entry system, and we need to be able to email your ebook to judges. For instance, if your ebook edition has DRM—and hence can’t be shared—you’ll need to enter print.

Also, if your only ebook edition is unsatisfactory for some reason—for instance, it’s an advance copy that’s significantly different from the published book, or it has a watermark that makes it hard for judges to read—you can still enter print. That’s okay. We won’t insist on digital if there are real problems. We’re just trying to keep as many entries digital as we can.

As for last year, you’ll be entering online. There’s a limit of 3 entries per person (that’s per human being, not per pseudonym) and your entries can go in any section/s you like.

New dates! In order to accommodate the extra judging round, we’re opening and closing for entries earlier than before. Remember—if you’re entering print copies (see above) your books must be postmarked by the closing date.

Opening: 16 December 2016

Closing: 16 January 2017

Full rules/conditions will be available soon on the RWA website—please read them carefully—but as always, contact the contest managers with any queries regarding the contest rules or entry process. If you have special difficulties, we can make arrangements —don’t be afraid to ask!

Ruby Finalists!

Every year at RWA, we invite romance writers with books published in the previous year to enter the Ruby – RWA’s Romantic Book of the Year contest.   The final results are announced at the Gala Dinner at our annual conference in August (which is in Adelaide this year).  But for now, just to whet your appetite, we are delighted to announce the finalists in the five categories.  We are also delighted to point out that this year, we have included the novella category in its rightful place, in the Ruby list.

Today, to spread the love as quickly as possible, we’re just publishing the list, but over the next week, we’ll devote a day to each of the categories and share the covers and more information about these wonderful finalists – so watch this space for additions to your TBR list!

Long Romance

  • Rise by Karina Bliss – self-published
  • The Spring Bride by Anne Gracie – Berkley/Penguin Random House
  • Kakadu Sunset by Annie Seaton – Pan Macmillan Australia
  • Lethal in Love by Michelle Somers – Random House Australia

Romantic Elements

  • A Dangerous Arrangement by Lee Christine – Escape Publishing
  • The Patterson Girls by Rachael Johns – Harlequin MIRA
  • Pay The Piper by Mary Brock Jones – self-published
  • Between the Vines by Tricia Stringer – Harlequin MIRA

Short Sexy

  • Tribal Law by Shannon Curtis – Australian Romance Readers Association
  • The Wedding Bargain by Yvonne Lindsay – Harlequin Desire
  • Pretend It’s Love by Stefanie London – Entangled Lovestruck
  • Never Surrender by Rosie Miles – Entangled Ignite
  • Seducing His Enemy’s Daughter by Annie West – HM&B Sexy

Short Sweet

  • You For Christmas by Madeline Ash – Tule Publishing
  • Still Married To Her Ex! by Lucy Clark – HM&B Medical
  • Home to Bindarra Creek by Juanita Kees – self-published
  • The Secret Son by Joan Kilby – Tule Publishing
  • Reach For The Stars by Kerrie Paterson – self-published


  • Mistletoe Maverick by Shannon Curtis – self-published
  • Silk & Scars by Cassandra Dean – Decadent Publishing
  • Pursued By The Rogue by Kelly Hunter – Tule Publishing
  • What A Bachelor Needs by Kelly Hunter – Tule Publishing

Contest Results from the Gala Dinner, Get Fresh Conference 2015

Once again, our conference organisers hosted a wonderful conference dinner and glorious award presentation.  Ask someone who was there about our lovely ‘butlers’ (who were present entirely to support the Indigenous Literacy Foundation, honest), the almost impossibly limber ‘Gene Kelly’ (Matt Mitchell) who opened proceedings and Paul Fennel and partner from You Can Dance Studio with the swing dancing.

Thank you to our conference committee, and especial thanks to Frano Graco, Patsy Poppenbeek, Leisl Leighton and Helen Katsinis for organising and managing such a great event.  We must also thank the very lovely Jane Porter, who MC’d the evening for us, very beautifully (and with the admirable crowd control skills of someone who used to teach 13-year-old boys).

We started by congratulating the winners of the Ripping Start, Selling Synopsis, First Kiss, Little Gems and Little Gems Cover Awards, all of which were decided and announced during the year.  (If you would like to revisit the winners and finalists, they are listed at the end of this post.)  Thank you to Anita Heiss, Claire Boston, Kate Cuthbert, Jo McAlister, Ali Wattas, Margaret Midwood, and Lis Hoorweg for presenting those awards.

Then we moved onto the awards that are saved for the big reveal at the conference, which this year included The Valerie Parv Award, The Emerald, The Emerald Pro, the ROMA, The Ella, The Ruby, the Lynne Wilding Meritorious Service Award and a Life Member Award. We also announced the covers from our members’ books that we voted as our favourites in several categories.  Thank you to Sarah Fairhall, Valerie Parv, Erica Hayes, Pippa Roscoe, Marnie St Clair, Kerri Lane, Leisl Leighton, Raewyn McGill, Courtney Miller-Callihan, Margie Lawson, Michelle Laforest, Annie Lynch, Graeme Simsion, and Angela Ackerman for presenting these awards.

(Please note that I may have left a couple of presenters off this thank-you list – I will update as I confirm that, but if anyone knows one I’ve missed, let me know!)

I must also take this opportunity to thank Erica Hayes and all the volunteer members of the contest team of RWA, without whom, our contest season could not happen.

And now, for the results, drumroll please…

The Cover Contest competition, judged by our members.  As authors, we often have very little control over our covers, so we are always grateful when the cover fairies (otherwise known as the artists and publishers who create the art) bless us.  This year, our most blessed books, as judged by our members, were:

Favourite Contemporary Romance Cover:

Luna Tango – Alli Sinclair – Harlequin MIRA

Favourite Historical Romance Cover:

Road to Ruin – Bronwyn Stuart – Harlequin MIRA

Favourite Paranormal Romance Cover:

Circus Escape – Lilliana Rose – Less Than Three Press

Favourite Romantic Elements Cover:

Shooting Butterflies – TM Clark – Harlequin MIRA

Favourite Rural Romance Cover:

Red Dirt Duchess – Louise Reynolds – Destiny Romance, e-Penguin

Congratulations to all these members for having great luck with the cover fairies and to the publishers who commissioned and artists who created these gorgeous covers.


The Valerie Parv Award (VPA) 

Highly Commended:

Believe in Fairy Tales – Dee Scully

Reciprocal Chemistry – Kat Colmer

Alpine Kisses – Laura Boon

3rd Place: Horseshoes and Hand Grenades – Dave Sinclair

2nd Place: The Norman Bride – Anna Romaine

And the winner and the new minion is…

1st Place, VPA – Momento Mori – Carly Main


The Emerald Award

3rd Place: Polly’s Patisserie – Kerrie Paterson

2nd Place: At First Fight – Joanne Robertson

1st Place: The Hermit Next Door – PJ Vye


Emerald Pro

3rd Place: Twined – Morgan Cole

2nd Place: Bound for Eden – Tess LeSue

1st Place: The Soul Weaver – Heidi Catherine



The Lyn Wilding Meritorious Service Award.

The LWA is named in honour of RWA’s first president, Lyn Wilding, and honours our wonderful volunteers.  In this sense, it is not won, as all our volunteers and all the nominees are winners in our eyes.  It is awarded and this year it was awarded to a very deserving recipient, namely:

Diane Curran


The Roma Award for Media

The finalists for the ROMA Award 2015 were:

Danielle Binks  “Things No-one Tells you About Romance Readers”   (Dailylife.com.au)

Evana Ho “Interviews at the 2015 ARRA Convention” (ArtSound FM / EvanaHo.com)

Stephanie Pegler Romance Novel Explores FIFO Love  (The West Australian Newspaper/News.Yahoo.com)

The ROMA is an award to recognise professional, positive media coverage of the romance industry. It was launched by Romance Writers of Australia (Inc) (RWA) to help recognise and acknowledge those members of the media who reach beyond the cliché in their reporting on romance writers, releases or industry. In determining the winner, the award selection panel look at the angle of the article, the quality of research, the representation of romance and the ‘reach’ of the piece.  Any RWA member can nominate a media piece that they feel stands out as particularly worthy.

And the ROMA was awarded to:

Danielle Binks  “Things No-one Tells you About Romance Readers”   (Dailylife.com.au)


New Life Member

In honour of her work as a volunteer, but especially for her part in the committee that saved RWA during a very dark time for our organisation, we are delighted to announce our newest Life Member:

Jennifer Brassel


Ella Contest for Published Novellas

The Finalists Were:

Her Christmas Earl by Anna Campbell

Home for Christmas by Fiona Greene

Beneath a Trojan Moon by Anna Hackett

Sympathy for the Devil by Kelly Hunter

In a very exciting result, we had an equal first, so the Ella was awarded to both:

Her Christmas Earl by Anna Campbell


Beneath a Trojan Moon by Anna Hackett



Ruby Award for Romantic Book of the Year

Short Sweet Finalists:

Dr. Perfect On Her Doorstep – Lucy Clark

Waves of Temptation – Marion Lennox

A Little Christmas Magic – Alison Roberts

The Maverick Millionaire – Alison Roberts

The Tycoon and the Wedding Planner – Kandy Shepherd

And the Ruby goes to:

Waves of Temptation – Marion Lennox


Short Sexy:

Wanting What She Can’t Have – Yvonne Lindsay

Romance For Cynics – Nicola Marsh

Tycoon’s Temptation – Trish Morey

Damaso Claims His Heir – Annie West

And the Ruby goes to:

Damaso Claims His Heir – Annie West


Long Romance:

Risky Business – Amy Andrews

Deadly Secrets – Sarah Barrie

Moonlight Plains – Barbara Hannay

Attraction – KM Golland

And the Ruby goes to:

Risky Business – Amy Andrews


Romantic Elements:

Flight to Coorah Creek – Janet Gover

The Trader’s Reward – Anna Jacobs

Outback Ghost – Rachael Johns

The Lace Balcony – Johanna Nicholls

Riverboat Point – Tricia Stringer

And the Ruby goes to:

The Lace Balcony – Johanna Nicholls


Finally, here are the links for the previously announced competitions:

Ripping Start Results

Selling Synopsis Results

First Kiss Results 2015

Little Gems and Little Gems Cover Results 2015


And then we all boogied and photo-boothed our celebrations at the Escape after-party till they kicked us out!

Congratulations to all the winners and recipients and to all those admiring them from afar, make sure you enter next year.  You have to be in it to win it!





Ruby Finalists

We are delighted to announce the finalists for the RWA Romantic Book of the Year (Ruby) 2015.  Drum roll please for our finalists (in alphabetical order by author within each section):

Short Sweet:

Dr. Perfect On Her Doorstep – Lucy Clark

Waves of Temptation – Marion Lennox

A Little Christmas Magic – Alison Roberts

The Maverick Millionaire – Alison Roberts

The Tycoon and the Wedding Planner – Kandy Shepherd

Short Sexy:

Wanting What She Can’t Have – Yvonne Lindsay

Romance For Cynics – Nicola Marsh

Tycoon’s Temptation – Trish Morey

Damaso Claims His Heir – Annie West

Long Romance:

Risky Business – Amy Andrews

Deadly Secrets – Sarah Barrie

Moonlight Plains – Barbara Hannay

Attraction – KM Golland

Romantic Elements:

Flight to Coorah Creek – Janet Gover

The Trader’s Reward – Anna Jacobs

Outback Ghost – Rachael Johns

The Lace Balcony – Johanna Nicholls

Riverboat Point – Tricia Stringer

As usual, competition was fierce, and all our entrants deserve congratulations. Winners will be announced at the conference in August. Thanks to our reader judges, and the hardworking contest managers, Annie Lynch and Gemma McBride.

Author Spotlight and Giveaway: RUBY finalist and Lynn Wilding award nominee, Juanita Kees…

Today we welcome to the Author Spotlight our very own RWA blog supremo, Juanita Kees.  Welcome, Juanita, and congratulations on the release of ‘Under Cover of Dark ’!  Could you give us the blurb, please?

New Australian romantic suspense follows Under the Hood, about a Western Australian drug gang, the teenagers they recruit, and the cop who wants to bring them down.

When Mark Johnson delves deeper into his investigation into the murder of Tiny Watts and the involvement of a teenage gang with sleazy lawyer, Gino Bennetti, and his drug world ties, the last thing he expects is to be interviewing Gino’s widow, a woman in a world of trouble.

When her husband is shot and killed, it is both a relief and a disaster. Lily has her son to protect and secrets that run deeper than the scars she bears. Mark Johnson is the last person she wants uncovering those secrets, especially the truth about her son, Luke’s involvement in Tiny Watts’ murder.

As the investigation continues and Lily’s wounds begin to heal, she finds the detective easy to trust and the friendship between them blossoms into more. But the secret Lily holds places everyone in very real danger. When it is finally revealed, Lily will lose everything: her son, the man she’s grown to love, her freedom, and her life.


Also, congratulations on being a RUBY finalist for ‘Under the Hood’. How did it feel to see your name in the finals?

Surreal! There are so many wonderful names up there amongst the finalists. I am both honoured and in awe. I’d hate to be one of the judges with all that talent to choose from. I’m thrilled to make it to the finals with this baby. I had so much fun writing it. Thank you to the judges who read and enjoyed it enough to get it nominated for this fabulous award.

You are one busy, busy lady! Between being a freelance editor, writer and senior editor on the RWA Blog, mum to three boys and wife, how on earth do you manage your time?

Don’t forget the dog!  Plus I work three days a week as an administrator at a Holden Dealership. Seriously? I don’t know. It takes a lot of juggling some days. Perhaps because I love what I do with such passion, I don’t see it as a chore. I do know that there are days when I could use an extra twenty four hours!

‘Under Cover of Dark’ is a romantic suspense. What are the elements of a compelling romantic suspense?

A fast pace, tension, high drama and the odd plot twist surprise to keep the reader engaged in the story, always wanting to know what will happen next. I like to take my readers on an emotional journey as well as an adventure. When they put the book down, I want them to be exhausted, emotionally drained and in love. If the reader feels as if they’ve been a part of the characters’ journey, the author’s job is done.

How do protagonists and heroes in romance differ from those in romantic suspense?

Romantic suspense characters have an edge. They are mysterious, brave yet protective, a little dangerous and love taking risks. While romance heroes wine and dine their heroines in comfort and style, romantic suspense heroes are out there in the wild world saving their heroines in the face of danger. I’d happily settle for both!

Is there any other genre you could see yourself writing in the future?

I’m dabbling in a little Fantasy at the moment with my next series set on Paradise Beach.

When you’re not editing, writing, RWA-ing, what do you do in your spare time?

Spare time??  I potter around my garden, restore garden furniture, read and enjoy the odd motorbike ride to wherever the road takes us.


As a professional editor, do you find that in your own work you edit as you go? What is the main challenge in being both an editor and an author?

The hardest thing is shutting down the editor in me when I write, so yes, I edit as I go. It takes forever! One of my critique partners once said, “You write a very clean dirty draft.” The downside of that is my stories don’t get written very fast!

What would we find on your bookshelf/ereader?

A LOT of romance in any genre, my Tony Park and Matthew Reilly collections, and the odd biography.

You’ve written about subjects as diverse as a motor dealership, gangs and drugs, and kidnapping. How do you go about researching these topics for authenticity?

I’ve worked in the motor industry forever and am a car fanatic. My father was a mechanic by trade, my mother hails from generations of General Motors employees and I married an auto electrician. I have oil in my veins and loads of material to work with!

In Under Cover of Dark, I was lucky enough to have the help of a prison officer who I probed mercilessly with questions. Understandably, there were some questions he couldn’t answer but I was blown away by his absolute commitment to juvenile offender rehabilitation, despite the possibility they’d re-offend.

I watched a lot of reality programs on gangs in prisons and studied their habits and methods of communication. It’s fascinating to see how many ways a coded message can be delivered.


Can you tell us a little about your current work in progress?

I’m working on the next book in the Tag Raiders Series, Under his Protection, which features the youngest member of the gang, Connor, his mum Mia, and Ethan Wright who is a counsellor at the Tiny Watts Rehabilitation Centre opened by TJ and Scott Devin (Under the Hood).

Thanks for coming on today, Juanita. Could you give us a sneaky peek at one of your favourite parts of ‘Under Cover of Dark’, please?


He stood almost toe to toe with her now. She felt the warmth of his body, the temptation to sink into the comfort it provided. Her body swayed towards him with the strength of the pull. Strong, warm fingers tipped up her chin gently. Dark grey eyes searched hers for the truth and promised a safe haven from harm.

‘My offer of witness protection is still on the table. Take it and let’s end this nightmare of yours.’

Lily hesitated a moment longer, torn between telling the truth and protecting her son who had suffered so much at the hands of these criminals already. She’d borne this burden alone for too long. The strength to fight against it waned as the ache of her strained muscles surfaced.

‘Yes, he has a diary.’

With a sigh, Mark pulled her into his arms and held her against the beat of his heart. Lily listened to the comforting tattoo for a moment, savoured the warmth of his arms and allowed herself to believe he meant what he said.

juanita (2)


Web links






Buy link

Juanita is kindly gifting one  eCopy of ‘Under Cover of Dark’ to one lucky reader. To enter all you have to do is leave a comment for Juanita below. The winner will be contacted via email, so please make sure that we can reach you!

And finally, on behalf of all RWA members, thank you Juanita for all that you do for this wonderful organisation. We wish you the best of luck with the RUBY and the Lynn Wilding award!

*Ed’s Note: Thank you for having me! I cannot tell you how much it means to me to be part of such a wonderful family here at RWA. Each conference is like coming home, a family reunion that inspires, encourages and motivates. Volunteering is a way to give back to the members what they give me – love, support, creative advice and a place where I feel I belong. Here’s to many more years of success and growth for all! You rock!

To my fellow nominees in the Lynne Wilding and RUBY, wishing you all a hearty congratulations and good luck for Awards night. I’m already a winner to be in such talented company. Thank you.  






Ruby Finalists Announced

Drumroll please!  We are delighted to announce the finalists for the reader-judged RWA Romantic Book of the Year contest, better known as the Ruby.


In the ‘Short Sexy‘ division (and please note the description refers to the stories, not the authors, some of whom are quite tall 😉 ) the finalists, in alphabetical order by author, are:

What the Bride Didn’t Know Kelly Hunter
One Secret Night Yvonne Lindsay
Never Say No to a Caffarelli Melanie Milburne
A Price Worth Paying Trish Morey


In the ‘Short Sweet‘ division (again, referring to the stories, although the sweet part is, I’m sure, perfectly true of the authors as well) the finalists, in alphabetical order by author, are:

One Life Changing Moment Lucy Clark
Gold Coast Angels: Bundle of Trouble Fiona Lowe
A Father at Last Julie Mac
Secrets of a Career Girl Carol Marinelli


The ‘Stories with Romantic Elements’ finalists are:

Under the Hood Juanita Kees
Nobody But Him Victoria Purman
Currawong Creek Jennifer Scoullar
Lost in Kakadu Kendall Talbot


Finally, in the ‘Long Romance’ section of the competition, tied entries resulted in six title and five author finalists.  They are:

Holding Out for a Hero Amy Andrews
A Prior Engagement Karina Bliss
Letter from a Rake Sasha Cottman
The Dissolute Duke Sophia James
Mistress at Midnight Sophia James
Her Favourite Rival Sarah Mayberry


Our thanks, as always to all the volunteers who help to make the Ruby possible, especially Annie Lynch, contest co-ordinator for this year’s Ruby and all the reader judges and judge co-ordinators.

It’s wonderful to see a mix of new and established authors in this list and for the blog team, it’s especially exciting to see our own blog editor and Cruisin’ and Events columnist, Juanita Kees, among the finalists!

Congratulations to all of our finalists and best of luck with the final round of judging!

The winners of the Ruby are announced at the awards dinner at our conference in August and will be on this blog on Sunday the 10th of August 2014.

RWA Contest update

A quick reminder to our published authors and our short-story writers.  Both the Ruby and the Ella are now open for entries and close on the 7th of February.  So don’t delay!  And our Little Gems competition, for short stories, opens in a few days, on the 10th of January, and closes on the 31st.  For further details and entry forms, click on the links to be taken to the RWA website.

Awards News

Last night at the RWA 2013 Riding the Waves Conference, those attending enjoyed a wonderful champagne and chocolates (and dessert!) awards gala.

We celebrated a fine crop of blue ‘first sale’ ribbons, and had the opportunity to clap and cheer for the winners of the Little Gems, High Five, First Kiss, Selling Synopsis and STALI awards.  (All of these have been announced during the year.  If you would like to revisit the winners, you can search for the posts by contest name on this blog.)

Then we moved onto the awards that are saved for the big reveal at the conference each year; The Valerie Parv Award, The Emerald, the ROMA, The (brand new) Ella, The Ruby, the Lynne Wilding Meritorious Service Award and the Life Membership Award.

If you are on Twitter, you probably heard the results last night, but if you aren’t, or if you chose an early night over satisfying your curiosity, let us put you out of your misery right now.

The Valerie Parv Award
Highly Commended:
Jo Fereday – A Hero in Handcuffs
Alison Van Vreumingen – The Lost Princess of Rhaia
4th Place: C. T. Green – Onyx
3rd Place: Chris Taylor – The Predator
2nd Place: Jo McAlister – The Bright Side of the Moon
1st Place: Michelle Somers – Lethal in Love


The Emerald Award

Emerald Category Section:
Winner: Dorothy Bramich – A Dance with the Laird

Emerald Single Title:
3rd Place: Erin Moira O’Hara – The Italian Connection
2nd Place: Amy Rose Bennett – Capturing the Master of Strathburn
1st Place: Chris Taylor – The Profiler


The Lynne Wilding Meritorious Service Award
Alison Ahearn
Anita Joy
Margaret Midwood
Kerrie Ptolemy
Dana Scully

Recipient: Dana Scully


The Romance Media Award (ROMA)
There was a great standard in this year’s entries, which was very pleasing.  Make sure you let us know if you see good coverage of romance in the media!
Happily Ever After
by John Affleck – The Gold Coast Bulletin


Life Member Award
Our wonderful new life member, for services rendered to RWA is:
Bronwyn Jameson


The Ella Award
Brand new this year, this is an award for a novella by a published writers.
Kelly Hunter – Wish
Danielle Lisle – The Rose’s Bloom
Margareta Osborn – The Bush Christmas

Winner: Carolyn Wren – The Diplomat’s Daughter


The Ruby Award (Romantic Book of the Year)

The Ruby for Short Sweet Romance:
Madeline Ash – Uncovered by Love
Fiona Lowe – Newborn Baby for Christmas
Alison Roberts – Sydney Harbour Hospital: Zoe’s Baby

Winner: Emily Forbes – Sydney Harbour Hospital: Bella’s Wishlist

The Ruby for Short Sexy Romance:
Yvonne Lindsay – A Forbidden Affair
Melanie Milburne – Enemies at the Altar
Anne Oliver – The Morning After the Wedding Before

Winner: Nicola Marsh – Marrying the Enemy

The Ruby for Long Romance
Anne Gracie – Bride by Mistake
Helen Lacey – Marriage Under the Mistletoe
Sarah Mayberry – More Than One Night

Winner: Stephanie Laurens – The Lady Risks All

The Ruby for books with Romantic Elements
Elise K. Ackers – Small Town Storm
Fiona McCallum – Wattle Creek
Helene Young – Burning Lies

Winner: Tricia Stringer – Queen of the Road

Thank you to all of our volunteer judges, our industry judges, our contest and judge co-ordinators for all their hard work in making our contest season happen.  Thanks too to the conference organisers and sponsors who make our conference and awards night possible!

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