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Success Stories

We are honored to announce recent PNWA member success stories.
These authors achieved their dreams, either through their connections as members of PNWA or by attending our summer conference. We want to thank the agents and editors who worked hard to help our members succeed.

TARA SHEETS - member since 2014
Agent: Trident Media Group
Publisher: Kensington Publishing
Don't Call Me Cupcake- will be released in April 2018

"Thanks to my amazing experiences with the Pacific Northwest Writers Association, my dreams of being a multi-published author have come true.  
My novel, Don't Call Me Cupcake, won First Place in the PNWA Literary Contest for the Women's Fiction/ Romance category. An agent from Trident Media Group saw my contest win on the PNWA website and contacted me. After reading it, she offered representation and we took my book out on submission.  
Shortly thereafter, I accepted a 3-book deal with Kensington Publishing in NYC.  Don't Call Me Cupcake will be released April 2018, followed by the next two books in the series with release dates in 2018 and 2019.  
I feel very fortunate to have made such wonderful connections with other writers at PNWA, and will always be grateful to PNWA for helping me launch my career."


JOE BEERNINK - member since 2009
Agent: Sally Harding/The Cooke Agency
Publisher: HarperCollins, Canada 
Nowhere Wild - will be released in Canada and the US on August 25th, 2015

Joe attended his first PNWA conference in 2009 while working on a 139,000-word novel that was nowhere near ready to publish. The first agent he pitched at the conference that year was Sally Harding. A few rounds of edits later, Sally agreed to represent Joe. After some agent-author back and forth, Joe worked exhaustively on his manuscript and in the summer of 2012 Joe and Sally sold the work, Nowhere Wild, to HarperCollins Canada. Nowhere Wild will launch in Canada and the US on August 25th, 2015, by HarperCollins Canada and Harper 360, respectively.


JUDITH KIRSCHT  - member since 2004

Judith Kirscht was born and raised in Chicago, raised her family in Ann Arbor, Michigan, taught at the UC Santa Barbara, and moved to Washington State to devote herself to writing fiction. Each setting has produced a novel. She has been a member of PNWA since 2004, and her third novel Home Fires, was a finalist for the 2014 Nancy Pearl Award. For this and for the encouragement given by the PNWA, she is most grateful. Hawkins Lane, Judith Kirscht’s 4th novel, is a story of love gone wrong. Set in the Cascades, Ned and Erica Hawkins must overcome the power of their pasts or their love will end in tragedy.


CAREW PAPRITZ - member since 2010
King Northern Publishing
The Legacy Letters  

Winner of 5 national awards including the Mom’s Choice Award, The Legacy Letters reveals to us the rediscovered private letters from a dying father to his children—and his wife.  His words of wisdom, interwoven between deeply personal stories and poignantly-told memories, ultimately become the practical, moral, and spiritual guidebook for his children he’d never live to see, and for his wife, his redemptive act of love.

"PNWA is a must for every writer, whether you are published or striving to be published.  It’s the concentration of writing and publishing knowledge that makes the PNWA conference and all their workshops throughout the year such a great place for ALL writers.  I think the world of the PNWA and all that they have done to help me succeed in my writing and publishing career!"


LAURA ZERA - member since 2011
Agency: Zachary Shuster Harmsworth l Agent: Nan Thornton

"A huge thank you to PNWA, especially for the enormous feat of awesomeness that is the annual conference. I attended three conferences, then submitted to a number of agents who had requested materials during the pitch sessions. While I did not ultimately sign with any of those agents, the experience was invaluable and set me up with the confidence (and persistence!) I needed to continue my agent search. I was recently offered representation by Nan Thornton of Zachary Shuster Harmsworth and could not be more excited to enter into the next phase of my writing career. My memoir manuscript will be going out on submission this year, and I am beginning to conceptualize and outline my next project, which will be a novel. It was through PNWA that I really found my footing—not to mention one of my ace critique partners!--and for that, I am grateful.”   


CHRIS PATCHELL - member since 2008
Publisher: Amazon l Agent: Andrea Hurst 
In the Dark - release date August 2015 

"After publishing my first novel, Deadly Lies, I was looking for a way to get the word out about my fast-paced suspense novel to a broader audience. I found the answer as I was wandering along the hallway at the PNWA Conference. At a booth sponsored by the Andrea Hurst Agency, I picked up a card for 2Market Books. The next week I called Rebecca Berus, and together we got things rolling. Through Rebecca, I met Andrea Hurst. After signing with Andrea, I landed a publishing deal with Amazon. My next book, In the Dark, is set to release in August of 2015. The PNWA Conference is a great way to make connections that help make your publishing dreams come true. None of this would have happened had I not attended the conference."


MARK MACIEJEWSKI - member since 2013
Publisher: Simon & Schuster/Aladdin
Chub and the Cadre of Evil - release date Summer 2017 

Mark's novel Chub and the Cadre of Evil is about a bald middle-school outcast who becomes an unlikely hero when he decides to bring down his arch-nemesis and destroys an evil empire in the process. Mark's story won second place in the Middle Grade category of the PNWA lit contest in 2014. Shortly thereafter he signed with Sarah Davies of Greenhouse Literary Agency. In April, after several months of intensive rewrites and editing, Chub and the sequel Chub II: Electric Boogerloo sold to Amy Cloud (Simon & Schuster/Aladdin) in a two book deal. Mark is an avid conference goer and believes the connections made through PNWA are key to his success.


RAEGYN PERRY - member since 2013
Publisher: Solstice Publishing 
Lavender Fields - release date coming soon

"I am beyond the words to convey how excited I am to have my book finally contracted to be published. In January, I attended the PNWA meeting on the topic of how to make a good first impression. The invited guest was author and COO of Solstice Publishing, Kate Marie Collins. I enjoyed the content and tips she shared, and connected with her after. It took me a couple of months to 'get back on the horse' as it were. Then I remembered a Confucius quote I had heard. It goes, "We all have two lives. The second begins when you realize you only get the one."  In a conversation via Twitter, Kate simply said to me, "Close your eyes, take a breath, and hit the button." On St. Patrick's Day, I did just that. Over the years I've sent Lavender Fields out to various agents and publishers, and knew that amongst all the 'no thank you' rejections, I'd get a yes eventually! I got a yes. It pays to persevere!"


ERIKA MITCHELL - member since 2011
Publisher: Champagne Books
Blood Money (released 2013) and Bai Tide (released 2015)  

Erika signed with Champagne Books after pitching at the 2011 PNWA Conference. She writes espionage novels for the modern age, chock full of explosions, plot twists, and the Oxford comma.

"The PNWA took me in when I was a bedraggled, lost little newbie writer who didn't know a synopsis from a query letter. They taught me what I needed to know about writing craft and then, when I was ready, they gave me the opportunity to pitch my novel at the annual conference, where I eventually landed my publisher! It's a warm, welcoming organization for writers of all levels, and a great place to learn what you need to know in order to survive the wild world of publishing." 


LEE ANN WARD - member since 2014
Agency: Andrea Hurst Literary Management - Agent: Katie Reed

"I just wanted to write and thank you for the amazing conference in July! I can honestly say, I attend at least two conferences a year, and never have I been afforded the opportunity to pitch to so many agents. And, as a result, I recently signed with agent Katie Reed of Andrea Hurst Literary Management for my young adult manuscripts titled See and Glimpses of Wilderness.

Thank you so much for having this amazing event. I am so proud to be a new member of PNWA. You helped make my dream come true!"


ETHAN REID - member since 2006
Publisher: Simon451 (Simon & Schuster) - Editor: Sarah Knight
The Undying - release date October 2014

Ethan signed with Barbara Poelle of the Irene Goodman Literary Agency after meeting at the PNWA conference. His debut title, a Paris-set dystopian novel The Undying, is part of the inaugural list of Simon and Schuster’s new SF imprint Simon451. More information will be released at the NY Comic-Con in October.

RICHARD HACKER - member since 2010
Publisher: Champagne Book Group - Editor: J. Ellen Smith
Dirty Water - release date June 2013

Richard signed with editor J. Ellen Smith at the PNWA conference. His novel Toxic Relationship was first released August 2012 and has been followed by the June 2013 release of Dirty Water. Look for the third Nick Sibelius humorous crime thriller, Chain Reaction, coming in March 2014.

KEN SCHULTZ - member since 2006
Publisher: Champagne Book Group - Editor: J. Ellen Smith
Truth Teller Rebellion - release date November 2013

Ken signed with editor J. Ellen Smith at the PNWA conference. His novel Truth Teller Rebellion will be released in November 2013.

STEPHANIE COLE - member since 2011
Publisher: Champagne Book Group - Editor: J. Ellen Smith
Compass North - release date December 2013

Stephanie signed with editor J. Ellen Smith at the PNWA conference. Her novel Compass North will be released in December 2013.

TRACY WEBER - member since 2011
Agent: Margaret Bail/Inklings Literary Agency
Publisher: Midnight Ink
Murder Strikes A Pose  - release date January 2014

Tracy attended the 2012 PNWA conference, where she learned how to write query letters and pitch her novel. Tracy signed with Margaret Bail that fall. Margaret sold the first three books in the Downward Dog Mystery Series to Midnight Ink just three months later. Tracy's first novel, Murder Strikes A Pose, will be released January 2014.

JANET FISHER - member since 2002
Agent: Rita Rosenkranz/Rita Rosenkranz Literary Agency
Publisher: Globe Pequot
A Place of Her Own - release date June 2014

Janet's A Place of Her Own: The Pioneer Journey of Martha Poindexter Maupin is the story of the author's great-great-grandmother who makes a daring decision to buy a farm on the Oregon frontier after her husband dies, leaving her with many children and few options. The farm is still in the family after 145 years, now owned by the author.

If you have a success story we don't know about please contact us so we can share your story!

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