A Matter of Mercy won the Independent Publishers Silver Medal for Best North-East Fiction last week. It has a shiny new medallion on the cover. Kristina Makansi of Blank Slate Press, my publisher, will be in New York City at Book Expo America and will represent me at the award ceremony. Of course, it’s gratifying to see a “medal” on the reissued book cover, but I know it should really go to many people, with my gratitude. The parts of the story based on research and actual events came from Barbara Austin and some of the other aquaculturists of Wellfleet, Massachusetts, who generously shared their lives, teaching me what they do and telling me about the lawsuit against them and its utterly unlikely outcome. And for the book to even get past the first round of judging, the panel had to think the book was well-designed with an effective cover. All the credit for that goes to the publisher. Then the judges got to the text, which writer friends–in particular Nancy Pinard–read multiple times and gave helpful feedback on before I ever submitted it for publication. And that was before my excellent editor worked on it.
There are also people whose roles in the life of a book can easily go unheralded, like the number of times my husband saved my computer from what I considered a well-deserved violent death. He coaxed it into submission when it was being absurdly stupid, after calming me with a bottle of fruit juice and a straw. (Well, yes, I suppose it is possible that the grape juice was fermented.) And my sister, who not only “likes” and “shares” every post on social media, tormenting her friends with clogged in-boxes, but who also set up many readings and even an NPR interview in her home state of North Carolina when the novel was released.
Thank you from my heart to every person who helped and continues to help this novel find its readership. And here’s something else special that’s happened: the extremely lovely and talented Ciera deCourcy (I have no bias whatsoever), a senior at DePauw University majoring in Communications who has been Director of Programming at the TV station there and produced several TV shows already, has created a two minute video trailer for A Matter of Mercy. Here’s a link to it on You Tube. https://youtu.be/wX-KJw0d8QA I hope you’ll enjoy it. And one more thing–if you know anyone who might like the novel, the publisher has put the ebook on SALE for $1.99 (normally $8.99) through Friday of this week (May 22). This is good for Kindle, iBooks, Nook, and Kobo. And if you haven’t read it yourself, well…I hope you’ll grab this chance. And that you’ll share your thoughts and know how grateful I am.