Wow! I’m a 2016 Romance Writers of America Golden Heart® Finalist!

Bouquet of golden balloons for my Golden Heart nomination.
Bouquet of golden balloons for my Golden Heart nomination.

OMG. I’m so excited. My paranormal romance, Kissed at Midnight, is an RWA Golden Heart Finalist!

I got the call on Friday, March 25th. My family was home together due to the holiday. I had been following #RITAGH updates on twitter, my cell phone at my side just in case. When my landline rang, I thought it was someone doing surveys. But when the person on the other end of the line asked for Ainsley, I started shaking. No one calls me Ainsley but my husband. (He does it out of encouragement of my writing. Such a sweetie!)

This was the call!

I squeaked and burst into tears while the kindest person congratulated me on being a finalist and asked if I would be coming to San Diego in July for the conference and ceremony.

“Of course!” I said, still shaking and crying. We talked for a few minutes and then I asked her her name. She’d told me when I answered the phone, but my mind had blanked. It was Leslie Kelly, President-Elect of RWA. I wrote it down so I wouldn’t forget again. 😉

After we ended the call, my husband and son, who had wandered in to see who was on the phone, hugged and congratulated me. Later my family surprised me with balloons, a cake, and dinner at a new restaurant. (I finally tried sushi for the first time too.)

What better way to celebrate than with cake! (Love the purple writing and hearts too!)
What better way to celebrate than with cake? Love the purple writing and hearts too!

I am beyond thrilled. The response from my online friends and acquaintances has been wonderful. It’s true that romance writers (and readers) are incredibly supportive. In the weeks since, I’ve also gotten to know the other GH finalists. It’s been great sharing the experience and preparing for the big conference.

San Diego will be my first trip to Nationals. I’m a total newbie and so happy to be going even if I’m slightly overwhelmed by it all. It’s still hitting me that this story that I love is a finalist. That feels very validating.

Thanks for letting me share the story of my GH call!

Ainsley 😉

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