Saturday, July 14, 2007

Golden Heart Night

posted by Tawny Weber

Tonight is the culmination of a thrilling 4 months of what is a wild Golden Heart Ride. It all starts in that last week of March, when unpublished writers who entered the contest all sit by their phones, anxious and nervous, waiting for a call with those sweet words “Congratulations, you finaled in the Golden Heart.”

I giggle whenever I remember my first final. I hung up on the sweet lady who’d called. Well, not really ‘hung up’ per se, my phone went dead. Oops. I did better the next two years! That first time, though, like all firsts, was extra sweet. There’s the excitement of deciding on a Golden Heart photo, finding the perfect dress for the ceremony, and the flurry of submissions made while that golden window is open.

Better yet, there is the camaraderie, the sense of togetherness that happens with the other finalists. This blog is a perfect example of the best of that, I think. Fun, varied, interesting and a little quirky!

All that has been happening over the last few months for our 2007 Golden Heart finalists – a couple of which are Bandits! And now, tonight, they find out that ultimate question... who are the Golden Heart winners?

The ceremony is a fabulous blow out, with the big screens that show the stage and flash the finalists’ pictures for everyone to enjoy. Imagine a room filled with romantics, all dressed in their finest, waiting to cheer for their fellow writers. The energy is amazing.

Then, when your category is called, the excitement twists with nerves, and in my case, often nausea (really – I did NOT want to get up that stage... color me chicken) until the envelope is opened and the name read. It’s a huge, exciting moment and one that honestly doesn’t dim when another’s name is called.

I’ve seen the contest, or more, the RITA, compared to the Oscars, and I’d agree. Yes, its importance might only shine among RWA itself, having little impact on readers or even the buying habits of editors, but among the 9000+ RWA members who watch, with bated breath, the results of the Golden Heart and RITA, it’s an amazing thing.

I hope tonight’s gala event sees the names of our lovely bandits called – Beth Burgoon, Kim Howe, Trish Milburn & Anna Sugden .My fingers are crossed for each of them.But most of all, I’m thrilled and proud of them. The Golden Heart is a pinnacle of achievement that shines its light on some of the brightest and best writers in our industry... Congratulations, ladies. You all rock!!!


Christine Wells said...

Good luck Trish, Beth, Kim and V-A. Bring home the gold to the bandit lair. Tawny said it best-- y'all rock!

Christie Kelley said...

Good luck to all you GH 07 ladies tonight! I'll be thinking about you all.

Aunty Cindy said...

I messed with the font in your post for over 30 mins. last night and never COULD get the dang thing to look right. I'm sorry. :-(

And I couldn't agree MORE about the benefits of comraderie for the GH winners! Being a GH finalist in 2006 was THE BEST for me, even if I haven't sold my book...YET! Bonding with all the Packers has been an UNBELIEVABLE EXPERIENCE and I feel so blessed that it happened to me.

GOOD LUCK TONIGHT to ALL the finalists,

jo lewis-robertson said...

Beth, Kim, Anna and Trish, I'm rooting and hooting for all of you! Hoping you all come away winners tonight cause you're winners already in our hearts! jo

Helen said...

Good luck to everyone my fingers are crossed for you.
Have Fun

Stacy S said...

Good luck ladies!!

Aunty Cindy said...


This info I just this minute gleaned from the "Smart Bitches..." site... Our own Bandita BETH BURGOON WON the Golden Heart for Best Long Contemporary!!1

And our Bandita TRISH MILBURN took the GOLD for YA!!!

No more info at this point but SUPER CONGRATS BETH AND TRISH!!!!

Can't WAIT to hear your stories and see the piccies!


Marianne Arkins said...

Trish... I heard you WON! Woo!!!!

Anonymous said...

YEEHAW!!! That's both a shout of excitement and madness, as I search the internet frantically for more info about the Golden hearts. The Smart Bitches site doesn't show all the categories and RWA is down. WAAA!!!

But WAY TO GO Trish and Beth!!! You ladies are amazing!!! :-)

Suzanne Welsh said...

It was fantastic to cheer on our '07 Bandit finalists!! As my local chapter can tell y'all, I am not quiet when I know my friends are up for an award!!

Congrats to Beth and to Trish for taking home the GOLD!!


Joan said...

It WAS fantastic to see two of our own walk up on that stage. (Did ya'll hear me? I was the one clapping out in the crowd *G*)

I was (sniff) so proud!

Tawny said...

What an INCREDIBLE night!!! I'm so proud, so thrilled and so happy for our awesome Bandita's.

Caren Crane said...

Congrats again, Beth and Trish! I was equally thrilled that my dear friend and roommate, Debra Bess, won the GH for Short Historical! A very, very exciting night all the way around. Banditas are winners!