Meet the Final Judges

Shelly Alexander
Shelly Alexander is a 2014 Golden Heart Finalist and a 2019 RITA Finalist. She writes contemporary romance that is sometimes sweet, sometimes sizzling, and always sassy.

Tamra Baumann
Tamra Baumann is an award-winning author of light-hearted contemporary romance and cozy mystery. A reality-show junkie, she justifies her addiction by telling others she’s scouting for potential character material. She adamantly denies she’s actually living vicariously in their closets. 

Shea Berkley
Shea Berkley is a 3x Golden Heart Finalist in three separate genres (contemporary, mainstream fiction with romantic elements, young adult) and traditionally published in YA and self-published in adult paranormal. Her published books encompass the genres of fantasy and paranormal worked into contemporary and historical settings, yet she is an omnivorous reader of most genres, including literary and the odd nonfiction title.

Brenda Drake
Brenda Drake is the New York Times bestselling author of the Library Jumpers series, the Fated series, THUNDERSTRUCK, and ANALIESE RISING and the founder of Pitch Wars and #PitMad. When she’s not writing or hanging out with her family, she haunts libraries, bookstores, and coffee shops, or reads someplace quiet and not at all exotic (much to her disappointment).

Darynda Jones
Darynda Jones is the NY Times, USA Today. and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of the Charley Davidson Series (paranormal), the Darklight Trilogy (YA), and the upcoming Sunshine Vicram Trilogy (mystery), all with St. Martin’s Press. 

Robin Perini
Step into the Crossfire with internationally bestselling and award-winning author Robin Perini who is devoted to giving her readers fast-paced, high-stakes adventures with a love story sure to melt their hearts. A RITA Award finalist and Romance Writers of America© (RWA) Honor Roll Member, she sold fourteen titles to publishers in less than two years after winning the prestigious RWA Golden Heart Award in 2011, and currently dovetails her fiction writing with her advocacy for those battling Alzheimer’s Disease in honor of her mother.

Lauren Teffeau
Lauren C. Teffeau’s novel Implanted (Angry Robot, 2018) was shortlisted for the Compton Crook award for best first SF/F/H novel and won a 2019 Science Fiction Romance Galaxy award. She loves action, adventure, and happy endings, especially those that take place in science fiction and fantasy worlds.