Yes, it’s the RNA Conference, July 2014

Harper Adams in Edgmond, Shropshire, was the venue for this year’s excellent RNA conference, and the perfect ambiance it proved to be.

Before the conference proper began, RNA members gave talks and held workshops in the Wellington Library on the Thursday, and on the Friday morning, there was a highly successful ‘Love of the Past’, meet-the-author and book fair event at Blists Hill in the Victorian Town. To give you a flavour of the occasion, I’ve captured some of the magnificent costumes worn by the historical authors who participated in the event.

Freda Lightfoot
Me, preparing for the Blists Hill extravaganza
Christina Courtenay


Kate Johnson
Liesel Schwarz
Kate Johnson, Liesel Schwarz



Louise Allen
Nicola Cornick
Romy Gemmell, Louise Allen



Jenny Barden
Anne Stenhouse
Juliet Greenwood


Lynne Connolly
Jenny Harper
Jacqueline Farrell


Jean Fullerton
Denise Barnes
Alison Morton, Jacqueline Farrell




And finally from Blists Hill, no photographic record of an RNA event is complete without at least one photograph of a pair of shoes …


My boots


Moving on  to the first day of the conference …

Getting together after the panel
Christina Courtenay, Chair of the RNA, and Jan Jones, Conference Organiser, welcome the delegates
Lizzie Lane, Judy Astley, Sue Moorcroft, Janey Fraser, Charlotte Foreman. Panel for the topic: ‘Reviews Revealed’


Christina Courtenay, Liesel Schwarz
Elizabeth Cooper, Anita Chapman
Carol McGrath, Charlotte Betts


Jen Gilroy
Alison Knight


Lynne Connolly, Liam Livings, Jan Jones



What better thing to do on a hot summer evening than gather together on the grass outside one of the houses in which we were staying. After dinner on the Friday evening, we did just that.

Alison May, Janet Gover, Lyn Vernham (MD, Choc Lit), Kate Johnson, Sue Moorcroft, Margaret Kaine
Melanie Hudson, Jane Lovering, Sarah Callejo, Rhoda Baxter, Laura E. James,
Alison May, Janet Gover












Val Williamson, Rachel Brimble, Alison Knight, Christina Courtenay
Henriette Gyland, Alison Morton, Val Williamson, Rachel Brimble










Erica Hayes, Melanie Hudson, Jane Lovering
Liesel Schwarz, Jane Lovering, Robert Fanshaw
Celia Anderson, Vanessa Savage, Lucie Wheeler, Catherine Miller, Simon Whaley


Now on to some of the talks I attended.


Eileen Dickson, Jen Gilroy, Julie Roberts
Checking the locations for the various talks and workshops
Nikki Logan, President of the RWA, discusses how the body reacts when reading


Matt Bates, Fiction Buyer for WH Smith Travel, and Richard Lee, Founder of the HNS, talk about getting books into retail outlets
Katie Fforde, Christina Courtenay, Jenny Barden (who organised the conference programme), Richard Lee, Nikki Logan discuss the Future for Romantic Fiction
Hazel Gaynor




Alison Baverstock, sharing her research into self-publishing


Ian Skillicorn tells the delegates everything they need to know about self-publishing their books
Phillipa Ashley & Nell Dixon discuss writing a series or set of linked books





And yes, there was a lot of gathering
Gathering for the Gala Dinner
Still more gathering



Denise Barnes, Jean Fullerton, Me
Alison May, Janet Gover, Denise Barnes, Jean Fullerton
Alison Morton, April Hardy, Sue MacKender, Eilidh McGinness


Janice Preston, winner of the Elizabeth Goudge Trophy
Denise Barnes, Alison Morton
Pia Fenton (Christina Courtenay), Chair of the RNA, with Jan Jones, announcing winner of the Elizabeth Goudge Trophy


Janie Millman, winner of the Katie Fforde Bursary
Katie Fforde, announcing the winner of the Katie Fforde Bursary


Sue Moorcroft, Jan Jones, Pia Fenton




The evening draws to an end  …

Talli Roland
Liam Livings
Sarah Callejo, Rhoda Baxter, Me




For those who stayed on, the last afternoon begins…

On the Sunday Sofa. Jane Wenham-Jones with Janie Millman, Christina Courtenay, Katie Fforde, Jo Thomas
… with necessary supplies
Kate Johnson prepares for mental exertion


And on the final evening …

The best of quiz teams (even if we didn’t win). April Hardy, Alison Morton, Denise Barnes, Eilidh McGinness, Me, Bernardine Kennedy


All there is left to say is, Roll on RNAConf15!

Over and out!




12 thoughts on “Yes, it’s the RNA Conference, July 2014”

    1. It was the best conference I’ve been to, I think. I loved the venue, the food was terrific, and it was a very good programme. I’m already looking forward to the next conference, which will be in London. Roll on!

    1. Maybe you’ll be in England at the time of the next RNA conference, Angela, or at least for one of the RNA parties. I do hope so.

  1. Fabulous photos (as usual) Liz. I’ll be sharing if that’s OK as I didn’t take many this year. Other things on my mind! Great conference – looking fwd to next year. Hope to see you at the Winter Party.

    1. Many thanks, Lizzie. You’re certainly welcome to share the photos. There’ve been occasions when I’ve been so engossed in gossipy things – delete that – so engrossed in mind -improving discussion, that I’ve ended up having to share the photos taken by others.

      I look forward to seeing you at the Winter Party. 🙂

  2. What fabulous pictures, Liz! Makes me miss conference all over again – seeing wonderful friends, meeting new ones and eating all that glorious food! My apologies for the terrible faces I seem to be pulling in every picture of me – I am so not good at pictures!

    1. Thanks, Jane. I love having pictures of events like this to look back at. I didn’t think the photos of you were too bad – not all of them, anyway!! Next time I see you, I’ll try to get a better likeness. Be warned!

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