Winning! by Lynne Marshall

Look out RITAs – incoming Boomerang!

This blog is a tweaked redo from a few months back – with UPDATES! (wonderful updates)

July is the time of year when the Romance Writers of America announce the winners for their version of the Oscars – the RITAs and the Golden Heart contest.  Authors across the nation tamp down their anxiety, hopes and fears on the given day, yet only a few receive the call.

Fiona Lowe WON! the RITA contemporary romance category with an e-book from Carina Press with Boomerang Bride (an absolutely wonderful book).  Being an e-book first, this was the underdog favorite in the contemporary romance category – a first final for Carina Press – and Boomerang Bride went on to win the category.  Such pure bliss!

Back in 2005, when I sold my first book to Harlequin Mills & Boon, I immediately was contacted by a lovely woman from Australia who’d sold her first book to the Medical Romance line six weeks earlier.  Her name was Fiona and she called us “Twins” since we’d sold so close together.  Without her friendship and guidance, as we coursed the all-new-to-us waters of publishing, I would have sunk!  So to say I was happy to hear her name announced at the RITAs with her very first single title book – Boomerang Bride – is a complete understatement!

Her acceptance speech hit the perfect mark.  It was gracious and delivered flawlessly, and most importantly she made a few important points so others struggling through this process of writing and publishing wouldn’t give up.

Boomerang Bride, according to Fiona, was rejected by XX number of agents – many who told her that an Australian heroine wouldn’t go over in the US.  She was rejected by XX number of print publishers, and though discouraged but not defeated, she submitted to Carina Press.  The rest, as they say, is history (or as I like to spell it HERSTORY.)

Since the RITA might be a once in a lifetime thing, Fiona decided to come all the way from Australia to the RWA national conference.  I was so happy to meet her and spend some fun time eating special lunches and dancing the night away at the Harlequin Party Friday night. Thanks for the memories, kiddo. 🙂


Until next week, make it a great one!



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24 Responses to Winning! by Lynne Marshall

  1. robena grant says:

    That made me all misty-eyed. You are so sweet to do this. And, did you realise you’ve featured two Aussies today, Lynne? : )
    Hi Fiona. I’m not sure if we met at the Australia RWA conference. I attended two of them. I know Amy, but your face is also familiar. You’ve got a great group down there. Wish I could afford to go every year.
    I’ve kind of been through a whirlwind week with congratulations, and information and requests fromRWA, and joining a GH loop, and trying to get writing done. And then yesterday the requests to guest blog started to roll in. I’m going to have to be selective or I’ll get nothing at all done but blogs. But it’s all good. : )
    Thank you again, Lynne.

    • Hi Robena!
      I meant every word. Yes, I did notice that both of you are Australian, 🙂 And one of the first things Fiona asked me, when she said she was coming, was if Roben would be there, too. She meant you. So I do believe you’ve met her downunder.

      Your banner, in this blog, clicks through to your personal website – I hope new people discover you!

      All the best wishes,

  2. Such wonderful awesomeness in today’s blog, Lynne! I must pick up Fiona’s book…it looks fabulous. And of course Roben – this is SUCH welcome news! I feel like we’ve all been in the trenches together for so long…success to one of our own is so sweet.

    • Hi Chrsitine!
      Yes “awesomeness” is a great way to describe Fiona’s and Robena’s recent successes. All the more sweet with “one of our own” 🙂

  3. Huge congrats to Fiona and huge congrats (again) to Roben! Besides the fact that I adore Roben, I have a soft spot for Aussies. One of my oldest and dearest friends is an Aussie (she’s in Brisbane) and I got to visit there when I was a teenager. Every Aussie I’ve ever met has been incredibly nice and delightful, so you can bet I’ll be cheering these two ladies on in Anaheim!

    • It will be great fun to cheer at RWA National conference Awards ceremoney, Robin. And we get to dress up, too!

      Thanks so much for reading and commenting.

  4. Fiona Lowe says:

    Lynne, I got tingles reading that on this cool Monday morning. Thank you! Bloggers, please know that us being ‘Twins’ is no one-ways street of support. There have been times I’ve whinged (whined) and moaned to Lynne on email and she’s picked me up and told me to keep at it. Boomerang Bride took a lot of tries before it found a home.

    Congratulations, Robena. I have everything crossed that you win a contract! as well as the GH 🙂

    • Hi Fiona – I’m happy to give you “tingles” 🙂

      It has been my pleasure to be there for your whinging any time you felt the need. The invitation is always extended. There is much to whine about in this biz, that is for sure.

      Looking forward to the whole magilla (as we say over here) that is the RWA National Conference. No matter what happens that night, it will be unforgettable!

      Thanks so much for commenting.

  5. Nas says:

    Congratulations to Fiona Lowe and Robena Grant!

    I’ve read and loved Fiona Lowe’s Boomerang Bride. But I haven’t yet had the pleasure of Robena’s stories!

    • Nas! It is so good to hear from you. I have been worried about all that flooding in Fiji.

      Hopefully, Robena will have her chance to wow you in print in the near future. The Golden Heart nomination is a huge step toward publication.

      And, as you know, I totally agree about Boomerang Bride. Fiona is one talented author.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting. Stay dry!

  6. Nas says:

    Hi Lynne,

    I’m planning on being there at the Literacy Signing. At Anaheim. Just to meet all of you!

  7. robena grant says:

    Happy to hear everything is okay, Nas. That’s great that you get to come to RWA, hope we get a moment to say hello. I always see you here on Lynne’s blog so I think I know you. ; )

    And Lynne, now you’re going to have to teach me how to make a banner. Ha ha.

    • Roben – all I did was click on your header at your website and pushed the “save as” for my file – I expected your picture to show up, but the whole banner did – so that’s what I posted. LOL.

      You didn’t actually think I was clever enough to do that intentionally did you? 🙂

  8. Dee J. says:


    What an awesome post! I’m so happy for both ladies! And really looking forward to meet my fellow Carina Press author Fiona in July. We are all so happy for her! Same with Robena! Absolutely thrilled that she’s a GH finalist. So glad to have people to cheer for in Anaheim!!

    • Hi Dee J! – yes, the big awards night will have extra-special meaning come July.

      You were always an honorary member of the 4-5Fs and we loved having you around whenever you came for a visit.

  9. Gina B says:

    Thanks for this wonderful post, Lynne!

    A big, huge congrats to Fiona…Boomerang Bride looks wonderful! And I could not be more thrilled for Roben! It’s definitely going to be an unforgettable night in Anaheim 🙂

    • You’re welcome – Gina B. Always nice to “see” you around the old blog homestead. I’m thrilled to know you’ll be holding Roben’s hand at the big moment!

  10. Amy Andrews says:

    I was so excited to see Fiona’s win come through on the tweet stream! I so wished I’d been there to jump up and down with her. I have BB in a couple of different formats and this book and Fiona’s journey with it is a great triumph over adversity story.
    I hope many good things come from this for Fiona!
    And Roben – I know I’m late to the congrats party but well done on your GH nom – fingers crossed something good comes from this too!

  11. admin says:

    Amy – it was a dream unfolding before my eyes. My roommate and I stood up and screamed when they announced her name, and again when she WON! I wish I could have recorded her speech to share with everyone.

    Rest assured, Robyn’s path has opened up from being a GH finalists, too!

    thanks for reading and commenting.

  12. Susan Carlisle says:

    Fiona is a class act and the RITA was well deserved. It was great to see ya’ll in Anaheim. Medical writers rock!

    • Susan – it was also fantastic to see you again. I couldn’t be prouder for a writer like Fiona. I hope this opens all kinds of new doors for her.

      thanks for stopping by,

  13. Fiona Lowe says:

    Oh, Lynne, it’s 5am my time and you’ve made me cry. Thank you so much. Winning is still not quite real. The win was wonderful, fabulous but it was the icing on the cake of meeting you and so many other great women I have been ‘talking’ to over the internet for years.
    Thanks for your friendship and support and right back at you!
    Fiona xx

  14. Sorry to make you cry. 🙂 but as for my support?
    Always, Fiona!