2017 RITA and Golden Heart Award Winners

Romance Writers of America (RWA) announced the winners of the 2017 RITA® Award, which recognizes excellence in published romance novels and novellas, on July 27 in Orlando, Florida.

The RWA also announced the winners of the 2017 Golden Heart® Award, for excellence in unpublished romance manuscripts.

RITA Award Winners

Romance Novella Winner

  • Her Every Wish by Courtney Milan

Contemporary Romance: Long Winner

  • Miracle on 5th Avenue by Sarah Morgan

Young Adult Romance Winner

  • The Problem with Forever by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Historical Romance: Long Winner

  • No Mistress of Mine by Laura Lee Guhrke

Romantic Suspense Winner

  • Repressed by Elisabeth Naughton

Paranormal Romance Winner

  • The Pages of the Mind by Jeffe Kennedy

Erotic Romance Winner

  • Off the Clock by Roni Loren

Historical Romance: Short Winner

  • A Duke to Remember by Kelly Bowen

Romance with Religious or Spiritual Elements

  • My Hope Next Door by Tammy L. Gray

Contemporary Romance: Short Winner

  • Christmas on Crimson Mountain by Michelle Major

Mainstream Fiction with a Central Romance

The Moon in the Palace by Weina Dai Randel

Best First Book Winner

  • Once and For All: An American Valor Novel by Cheryl Etchison

Golden Heart Winners

Contemporary Romance Winner

  • “No Man Left Behind” by Penelope Leas

Young Adult Romance Winner

  • “Listen” by Jennifer Camiccia

Historical Romance Winner

  • “With Love in Sight” by Christina Britton

Romantic Suspense Winner

  • “Semper Fi” by Meta Carroll

Paranormal Romance Winner

  • “Constant Craving” by Kari W. Cole

Romance with Religious or Spiritual Elements Winner

  • “Wings of Love” by Pamela Ferguson

Contemporary Romance: Short Winner

  • “Job Opening: Billionaire’s Wife” by Susannah Erwin

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3 thoughts on “2017 RITA and Golden Heart Award Winners

  1. For anyone else perplexed by the idea of an award for unpublished manuscripts, I looked on RWA’s site and the Golden Heart Award is for manuscripts by unpublished *authors*, specifically “manuscripts written by members who have not published a Novel or Novella.”

  2. Dan B., the Golden Heart is a fundraiser for the RWA: they charge $30 per entry and limit it to 1,200 entries, netting them up to $36,000. Preliminary Judges (RWA members who volunteer) do not appear to receive any compensation other than a “Judge for the RWA Golden Hearts Award” entry for their resumes and websites. Finalists are judged by romance publishing house editors who do this as a way to find new works to publish, with the worst crap already weeded out. For self-published authors, buying an entry (which is only open to RWA members) is a way to possibly get their work noticed by an editor, thus giving them an incentive to join the RWA.

    It’s actually a pretty clever marketing/fundraising mechanism for the RWA, while providing some actual value to some editors and authors (the operative word there being “some”).

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