AMERICA'S NEXT AUTHOR - Voting Goes Live on National Writing Contest & Jury Panel Announced!


AMERICA'S NEXT AUTHOR, an interactive writing contest that asks readers to vote for their favorite submissions while a jury of industry professionals oversees the competition á la American Idol. The official jury panel was released for the first time today, and is comprised of Autumn Stephens, Peter McCarthy, Sandra Poirier-Diaz, and Chauncey Mabe. More information on each jury member appears below...

While the submission period began on September 17, the official website went live earlier this week and votes have started pouring in. You can take a look at the submissions, reviews, and ranking here.

The jury is listed as follows:

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. 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, CA with her husband and two sons.

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 and from design to marketing.He served as vice president of Penguin Group Online (USA) and was most recently vice president of marketing innovation at Random House, Inc. 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.

Sandra (Sandy) Poirier-Diaz 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. Diaz 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. Highlights include placements on the Today Show, Parade Magazine (cover), Wall Street Journal, Forbes, SELF Magazine and CNN.

Chauncey Mabe served as book review editor at the Sun-Sentinel newspaper in Fort Lauderdale for more than 23 years. Mabe has worked as a freelance journalist, ghostwriter, and "book doctor," and has written for the Chicago Tribune, the Serving House Journal, Perigee, and the Palm Beach Arts Paper, amongst others. For two years, Mabe was responsible for a daily books blog produced by the Florida Center for the Literary Arts.

Check the contest out on Twitter using #ANA2012!