Shropshire author shortlisted for Romantic Novel Awards

Novelist Emma Cooper, from Telford, has been shortlisted for The Goldsboro Books Contemporary Romantic Novel Award in the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s 2019 Romantic Novel Awards.

Novelist Emma Cooper from Telford
Novelist Emma Cooper from Telford

Bestselling historical novelist Alison Weir will present the Awards for 2019 during a ceremony in the Gladstone Library, One Whitehall Place, London SW1 on 4th March.

The RNA’s awards are the only national literary prizes that recognise excellence in the genre of romantic fiction. In 2019 they comprise the Goldsboro Books Contemporary Romantic Novel Award, the Goldsboro Books Historical Romantic Novel Award, the Books and the City Romantic Comedy Novel Award, the Sapere Books Popular Romantic Fiction Award, the Fantasy Romantic Novel Award, the Shorter Romantic Novel Award and the Katie Fforde Debut Romantic Novel Award.

The RNA will also present an Outstanding Achievement Award to a writer who has made an extraordinary contribution to the field of romantic fiction.

Emma Cooper is one of 6 finalists in The Goldsboro Books Contemporary Romantic Novel category with her novel The Songs of Us, published by Headline Review.

If Melody hadn’t run out of de-icer that day, she would never have slipped and banged her head. She wouldn’t be left with a condition that makes her sing when she’s nervous. And she definitely wouldn’t have belted out the Arctic Monkeys’ ‘I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor’ in assembly at her son’s school.

If Dev hadn’t taken the kids to the zoo that day, then the accident wouldn’t have happened. He wouldn’t have left Flynn and Rose without a dad. Or shattered the love of his life’s heart.

And if they hadn’t seen the missing person report that day, they might never have taken the trip to Cornwall. And, in the last place they expected, discovered what it really means to be ‘Us’.

Emma Cooper’s journey from working class mother of four to full-time writer was rapid. After the slow process of writing her debut novel in snatched moments over a year, by contrast, she found the path to publication a surreal whirlwind. She was offered two five-figure advances from Italy and Germany on the same day that her card was declined in Aldi. The book was then part of a six-way auction in France, as her exhaust fell off her car, and rights to the book were sold in four other countries while her husband tied the exhaust back on with a piece of string.

Commenting about her novel being shortlisted for the awards, she said, “To be shortlisted for such a prestigious award is a dream come true me. I’m walking on sunshine … and it truly does feel good!”

Since its inception in 1960 the RNA has promoted excellence in romantic fiction and RNA Chair, Nicola Cornick, commented, “Romantic fiction in the 21st century is diverse and exciting and this year’s shortlist brilliantly reflects the breadth of the genre. We are very proud to celebrate these outstanding books and authors, and the contribution they make to such a successful and popular genre.”

David Headley, Managing Director of Goldsboro Books, commented, “The range of themes explored in this year’s shortlist is a testament to the many facets of the romantic fiction genre and Goldsboro Books is delighted to be sponsoring the awards for a third year, and bringing these diverse and entertaining books to readers’ attention.”

Books and the City Brand Director Sara-Jade Virtue said: “Championing the varied and diverse work of romantic fiction authors is at the heart and soul of everything we do at Books and the City, so we are delighted to be working closely for the first time with the RNA – an organisation we admire and respect greatly – by sponsoring the Romantic Comedy Award 2019.”

Amy Durant from Sapere Books said, “We are very excited to be sponsoring the RNA’s Popular Romantic Fiction Award. We hope that this new award will encourage more romance writers to submit to the annual RNA Awards and will be able to reward romance writing loved by readers.”

Katie Fforde said, “It’s an honour and a delight to be sponsoring the Debut Romantic Novel Award with such a strong shortlist.”