South Yorkshire romantic novelist Milly Johnson is feeling all loved-up...
The mum-of-two, from Dodworth, Barnsley, has beaten more than 100 fellow nominees to the UK romantic comedy novel of the year title with her book It’s Raining Men.
And Milly said she was thrilled to beat last year’s winner Jenny Colgan and Sunday Times best-seller Fiona Walker to the honour in the Romantic Novelists’ Association awards.
Milly, who sets all her books in the Barnsley area, said: “It was a shock to win. I hadn’t prepared a speech so I had to make one up on the spot, but I was thrilled.
“It was a true highlight of my life – especially as I was up against two of Jenny’s novels. I thought the odds were against me.”
Milly is celebrating a big year, turning 50 and launching her 10th book, The Teashop on the Corner.
Launching tomorrow, The Teashop on the Corner is Milly’s second book to make The Sunday Times top 10 list. She said the inspiration has come from Peter, her partner, and she has even named the main characters after his parents, Molly and 81-year-old Harvey Clemit, from Barnsley.
Sadly, Molly died two days before Milly received the award, aged 78, having never read the book.
Milly, who had her first novel published in 2004, said: “I’d like to think Molly is pushing the book from above.
“It’s a special book and one of which I am proud.”
Book number 11 is already under way and plans for a 12th book have been outlined.
Milly will be signing books at Waterstones in Meadowhall, tomorrow, from 10.30am to noon, and on Saturday, at WHSmith, Cheapside, Barnsley, from 9.30am to 11.30am.