Welcome to the 2018 Aspen Gold Reader’s Choice Awards for Published Writers 2018. ASPEN GOLD CONTEST OPENS April 1, 2018.

Participation in the 2018 Romance contest will be open to all published authors of novel, novella or short story length romancefiction. Entries must have an original copyright or first printing date of January 2017 through December 2017, and may be traditional or self-published.

This year, to align with our National organization, the Aspen Gold is e-entry only. E-books should be uploaded as a .pdf file as part of the Aspen Gold Entry Form, which will be available April 1. Contact us at with any questions. 


Entries may be submitted starting April  1, 2018, and must be received by May 31st, 2018. 

Payments are taken through the RWA website, and the entry form will direct you there upon submission. Please indicate the entry name and your name or pseudonym with your payment. We need to be able to match your payment to your entry.


If you would like to judge for a category other than the one you enter, please contact us at  If you would be willing to judge in our Molly contest for unpublished authors please contact us at


Short Romantic Story - Short stories of any romance genre. Word length: Less than 20,000 words.

Contemporary Short Romance – Romance novels of a present day setting, including series romance novels in which sensuality may constitute a strong element in the romance. Word count: Less than 75,00 words.

Contemporary Long Romance – Romantic novels of a present day setting, including series romance novels in which sensuality may constitute a strong element in the romance. Word count: over 75,000 words.

Erotic Romance – Romantic novels in which strong, often explicit, sexual interaction is an inherent part of the love story, character growth, and relationship development and could not be removed without damaging the storyline. Must have a central romance, including a Happily Ever After or Happily For Now. Word length: over 40,000 words.

Historical Romance - Novels that have a strong romantic element throughout. This includes regency romances. Settings must be prior to 1950. Word count: over 40,000 words.


ParanormalRomance  – Novels with any time setting that contain elements such as science fiction, fantasy, other mystical/paranormal themes or set in the future. Word count: over 40,000 words.

Romantic Novella – Short novels of any genre at least containing romantic elements. Word length: 20,000 -40,000 words


Romantic Suspense – Romance novels in which suspense or mystery may constitute a strong element in the romance plot. Word count: over 70,000 words.

Young Adult Romance – Novels of any genre aimed at the teen and young adult readers.  There can be a romantic element but romance does not need to be the focus of the work. Word Count: over 40,000 words.

Entry Deadline: All entries must be received by May 31, 2018.

Entry Fees:  Short stories all have a new rate of $15. All other books rates are HODRW member $20, RWA member $25, others $30.  Entry fees may be paid via PayPal.  Please note what the payment is for, the novel and contest to ensure proper credit.

More than one category can be entered by different books. However, each category has a three book limit per entrant.

 More questions?  E-mail