Monday, 14 May 2007

Romantic Novel of the Year and Romance Prize 2007

Posting shamefully late about this (excuse being that I've been working on the RNA Conference programme instead), but it was a lovely do at the Savoy to celebrate this year's Romantic Novel of the Year Award and the RNA Romance Prize for short romantic fiction.

The advantage of being the one with the camera is that I have nice shots of other people and none of me.

Above is Rosie Thomas just after Dame Tanni
Grey-Thompson announced her novel Iris and Ruby as the winner of the Romantic Novel of the Year Award for 2007, and (right) Dame Tanni and Rosie with her crystal star.

Next up was the Romance Prize for short romantic fiction. Jean Chapman, a previous chairman of the Romantic Novelists' Association announced the winner as Nell Dixon, with Marrying Max, published by the People's Friend Story Collection. There was a short pause at this point during which various kind friends tried to persuade Nell that she wasn't hearing things and that she really had won.

All in all, it was a splendid luncheon with delicious food, some seriously nice outfits (see Jenny Haddon's to-die-for lace, right), and congenial companions.

On my table we had Jessica Hart, last year's Romance Prize winner, also Natasha Oakley and Fiona Loakes.

Natasha was one of the 2007 short-listed authors and Fiona is the current holder of the Joan Hessayon award (a very distinguished body of people)

And then, once all the food had been eaten and the drink had been, er, drunk, my friends and I ambled round the corner to the Coal Hole.

As I said, a very good day.

(Pictured are Judy Astley, Katie Fforde, Gilli Allan, Bernardine Kennedy, Lesley Cookman and Jenny Harper)