America's Next Author background
  • Read our interview with ANA2012 winner Kate Baggott, and learn about the real-life experience that helped her write "Finnegan and Grandfather Cheng."
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  • Read our interview with Jen Barton, wildcard nominee and ANA2012 runner up.
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  • Read our interview with J.R. Verwey, the Round #8 nominee.
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  • Chauncey Mabe, who we can only describe as a straight-shooter, answers our questions about writing, social media, and more.
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  • Read our interview with Round #7 nominee Kellene Killmer and find out how she grew her Twitter following from 17 to 1,300 during ANA!
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  • Read the second part of our interview with jury member Autumn Stephens, in which she claims to be 5,000 years old and to enjoy reading books printed on papyrus.
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  • Read our interview with Luke Swanson, the youngest ANA nominee, and find out which book he'd be embarrassed to be seen reading.
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  • Jill Amber Menard, the Round #5 nominee, did an awesome job of getting votes for her story while also going to school and running a non-profit dance company, so the rest of us have no excuse.
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  • Read our interview with Lance Burson, who was chosen as the first wildcard nominee. He's funny.
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  • Read our first interview with jury member Autumn Stephens and find out what she will be looking for when reading the America's Next Author stories.
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  • Read our interview with Round #4 nominee Dom Goodall and find out how she managed to stay at the top of the Author Ranking each week. Plus: why is she so fascinated with wolves?
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  • Read part two of our interview with jury member Sandy Diaz and learn how to avoid the most common mistakes made by aspiring authors.
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  • Read our interview with Round #3 nominee Bellakentuky and learn what writing advice changed his writing style, plus what the name "Bellakentuky" means.
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  • Read part two of our interview with jury member Peter McCarthy and learn his advice for authors trying to get published.
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  • Read our interview with Round #2 nominee Lin Clements and find out how to prepare for the inevitable zombie takeover (plus a few things about writing).
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  • Read part one of our interview with jury member Sandy Diaz and find out what she will be looking for when reading the America's Next Author stories.
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  • Read our interview with Round #1 nominee Elizabeth A Reeves and find out how she managed to get to the top spot for week one.
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  • Read our first interview with jury member Peter McCarthy and find out what he will be looking for when reading the America's Next Author stories.
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  • Writing is an inside job with no heavy lifting. Who said that, Terry Pratchett? It has it’s challenges, like anything that feels worthwhile, but I certainly don’t regret choosing it as a career.
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America's Next Author
THE FIRST SOCIAL WRITING CONTEST!
America's Next Author is the first real social writing contest. Winners will be chosen based on a unique combination of votes from readers and publishing industry experts.

The Jury

Meet the America's Next Author jury members! They will be providing helpful insight during the contest through interviews and informative columns about the marketing and publishing industries. They will be combing through the stories to find their wild card picks -- those hidden gems that might have been overlooked by voters. The jury members will also oversee the final rounds and choose the ultimate winner of America's Next Author.

Autumn Stephens

Autumn Stephens

Autumn Stephens is the author of the Wild Women book series and editor of two anthologies of women's writing: The Secret Lives of Lawfully Wedded Wives and Roar Softly and Carry a Great Lipstick: 28 Women Writers on Life, Sex, and Survival. Since 2008, she has served as co-editor of The East Bay Monthly magazine, a regional magazine with a circulation of 81,000. A former book reviewer for the San Francisco Chronicle, she has written for The New York Times, SF magazine, and numerous Bay Area publications. 

She teaches private writing classes, leads writing groups for cancer survivors, and publishes an annual quotation calendar titled Wild Words from Wild Women. A graduate of Stanford University's creative writing department. 
Autumn lives in Berkeley, Calif. with her husband and two sons.

Interview With Autumn: Part 1 | Part 2

Chauncey Mabe

Chauncey Mabe

Chauncey Mabe fell in love with reading as a boy to learn more about dinosaurs, little suspecting he would eventually become one himself. A lifelong journalist, he served as book review editor at the Sun-Sentinel newspaper in Fort Lauderdale for 23 years, until the powers that be decided local arts coverage was no longer required or even desirable in the digital age.

Since leaving daily journalism (kicking and screaming and grasping every door jam) in 2009, Mabe has survived by a combination of hunting, gathering, and scavenging, which is to say as a freelance journalist, ghostwriter, and book doctor. For two and a-half years he wrote a daily books blog for the Florida Center for the Literary Arts. 

He has written for the Chicago Tribune, the Serving House Journal, Perigee, the Palm Beach Arts Paper, and other publications. As a literary journalist, Mabe covered the passing of one generation, the rise and maturation of another, as the culture has moved ever farther away from the written word.

Before joining the Sun Sentinel, Mabe worked as a reporter and magazine editor. He continues to review books of all genres whenever and wherever possible, hoping against hope that people will continue to value reading and writing. Perhaps digital books will prove to be the salvation of reading. He is happy to take part in this contest for that very reason.

Interview With Chauncey

Sandy Diaz

Sandy Diaz

Sandy is the president of Smith Publicity, a book marketing company dedicated to helping authors create awareness about their books through media coverage.

Smith Publicity has promoted more than 1,500 authors/publishers since 1997—from first time, self-published projects to New York Times best selling titles. Sandy has overseen the direction of more than 1,200 book publicity campaigns with tens of thousands of media placements in television, radio, newspapers, magazines and online outlets worldwide. Daily, she works with authors on strategies to create media attention for their titles. Sandy participates and speaks at book events around the world.

Sandy has over 20 years of experience in marketing, communications, and public relations fields. During her career, she has lead, designed and executed thousands of print ads, public relations strategies, direct mail campaigns, websites and videos for start-up businesses, Fortune 500 companies, individuals, authors/publishers, and non-profit organizations. Highlights of her publicity successes include placing clients on the Today Show, Parade Magazine (cover), Wall Street Journal, Forbes, SELF Magazine and CNN. She previously worked as Manager of Marketing Services for Thomson & Thomson, of the Thomson Reuters Corporation, where she planned and implemented over 400 marketing, PR, and image development programs.

Interview With Sandy: Part 1 | Part 2

Website: www.smithpublicity.com

Peter McCarthy

Peter McCarthy

Peter McCarthy is the Founder and Principal Consultant of McCarthy Digital, a boutique consultancy formed to serve the publishing value chain. He is a multi-channel marketer with 15 years experience in trade book publishing, working in roles from Editorial to IT, from Design to Marketing. He was a driver of the first digital efforts of such publications as The Reader’s Catalog, The New York Review of Books, and Granta,; served as VP, Penguin Group (USA) Online, where he ran their eCommerce, Consumer Online, and eBook areas; and was most recently VP of Marketing Innovation for Random House, Inc. where he helped envision and develop the latest – and next – generation marketing strategies and tactics for authors and titles. More on his practice, his credentials, and his blog can be found at his website. 

Interview With Peter: Part 1 | Part 2

Website: www.mccarthy-digital.com

DECEMBER 18th 2012
The winner of America's Next Author 2012 has been announced! [...]
DECEMBER 7th 2012
Questions and answers about the Battle Round. [...]
Goodbye For Now!
MYSTERY WRITER (7)
I won't be America's Next Author this year, but maybe next year ... [...]
America's Next Author

#ANA2012 | What Fans Have To Say

About

America's Next Author is the first social writing contest. Friends, family, fans and publishing industry experts will read authors' submissions and nominate their favorite to be America's next major author. Everyone can participate!