Public Announcements


MWA Announces 'The Writing Roller Coaster' Conference in Annapolis

Annapolis -- Writers, authors and publishers from all over the region will participate in this year’s Maryland Writers Association (MWA) conference, Saturday, March 25, 2017 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel. The annual event is an opportunity for writers to network, discuss their craft and participate in workshops with respected industry professionals and agents.

Click here for more information and to register.

In addition to workshops and networking opportunities, the MWA welcomes speakers Jeffery Deaver, internationally recognized mystery and crime writer, as well as Sci-Fi/Fantasy novelist Maria V. Snyder.

Deaver is a former journalist, folksinger, attorney, and bestselling author. His books are sold in 150 countries and have been translated into 25 languages. He has sold 50 million books worldwide.

Snyder is a former meteorologist responsible for the New York Times best-selling “Study” series about a young woman who becomes a poison taster.

“This is why the MWA conference is important,” said Eileen Haavik McIntire, MWA president. “I’m looking forward to this event because it offers a variety of choices that appeal to writers in different genres.”

Tickets for the event are $174.99 for participants who register before Jan.1, 2017 and $189.99 after. Tickets purchased after March 11 are subject to a $25 surcharge.

To become an MWA member join here, or find your local chapter. For more information, to arrange an interview with the speakers, an agent, or an MWA representative, contact



A former journalist, folksinger and attorney, Jeffery Deaver is an international number-one bestselling author. His novels have appeared on bestseller lists around the world, including the New York Times, The Times of London, Italy’s Corriere della Sera, the Sydney Morning Herald and the Los Angeles Times. His books are sold in 150 countries and translated into twenty-five languages. He has sold 50 million books worldwide

The author of thirty-eight novels, three collections of short stories and a nonfiction law book, and a lyricist of a country-western album, he’s received or been shortlisted for dozens of awards.

His The Bodies Left Behind was named Novel of the Year by the International Thriller Writers association, and his Lincoln Rhyme thriller The Broken Window and a stand-alone, Edge, were also nominated for that prize, as was a short story published recently. He has been awarded the Steel Dagger and the Short Story Dagger from the British Crime Writers' Association and the Nero Award, and he is a three-time recipient of the Ellery Queen Readers Award for Best Short Story of the Year and a winner of the British Thumping Good Read Award. Solitude Creek and The Cold Moon were both given the number one ranking by Kono Misurteri Ga Sugoi in Japan. The Cold Moon was also named the Book of the Year by the Mystery Writers Association of Japan. In addition, the Japanese Adventure Fiction Association awarded The Cold Moon and Carte Blanche their annual Grand Prix award. His book The Kill Room was awarded the Political Thriller of the Year by Killer Nashville. And his collection of short stories, Trouble in Mind, was nominated for best anthology by that organization, as well.

Deaver has been honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Bouchercon World Mystery Convention and with the Raymond Chandler Lifetime Achievement Award in Italy. The Strand Magazine also has presented him with a Lifetime Achievement Award.


Maria V. Snyder switched careers from meteorologist to novelist when she began writing the New York Times best-selling Study Series (Poison Study, Magic Study, Fire Study, Shadow Study, Night Study and Dawn Study) about a young woman who becomes a poison taster. Born and raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA, Maria dreamed of chasing tornados and even earned a Bachelors of Science degree in Meteorology from Pennsylvania State University. Unfortunately, she lacked the necessary forecasting skills. So she worked as an environmental meteorologist until boredom and children drove her to write down the stories that have been swirling around in her head. Writing, proved to be more enjoyable than meteorology, and Maria returned to school to earn a Master of Arts degree in fiction writing from Seton Hill University. Unable to part company with Seton Hill and its wonderful writing program, Maria is currently a teacher and mentor for the MFA program. 

Also on the program will be several editors from literary journals as well as agents. Agents attending Include Jessica Regel, Foundry Media; Anna Sproul-Latimer, RossYoon; Roseanne Wells of Jennifer DeChlara Agency and Maximilian Ximenez, L. Perkins Agency.   

Click here for more information about the conference and to register.


Teen Writing Clubs Win Grant

Constellation has honored MWA’s Teen Writing Program with a $500 grant under its Community Champions Program. Constellation, an Exelon company that supplies energy to homes and businesses in Maryland and throughout the United States, awarded the grant to help the program expand, to pay for teen members to attend the MWA conference in March, and to help subsidize our next teen anthology.

The grant paved the way for the opening of a new teen club in Catonsville that is set to begin in January. We have also just opened a new chapter in Annapolis. The two new clubs will bring the total to 13, serving more than 100 creative writers age 11-17.
For more information or to volunteer for the Teen Writing Club program, contact us at 


Montgomery Writes! Contest Winners 2016

The Montgomery Chapter of MWA announces the winners of the Montgomery Writes! 


Winner: Urvi Chowdhury, On the Run

Runners up:
Melanie Hatter, Malawi's Sisters
Stephen Sugg, Stanley and Phyllis

Creative Nonfiction

Winner: Laura Donnelly Smith, Tree Fall

Runners up:
Suzyn Gonzalez, Sitting in Airports, Waiting for Planes
Judy Ohr, Sand Never Stops Shifting


Winner: Emma Millar, The Osprey’s Nest

Runners up:
Shirley Menendez, A Villanelle to Life in America
Jennifer Bunch, Apple Pie Ala Mode: A Chronicle of the 1960s


Submissions Now Open for MWA's Annual Book Awards!

The 2017 MWA Book Awards are open to all MWA members in good standing who have published a novel (50K words or more) in 2015 or 2016. There is no fee to enter. 

Log into your member account to view / use: 


Awards will be given in the following genre divisions: 

  • Mystery/thriller
  • Romance
  • Science Fiction/Fantasy/Speculative fiction
  • Literary/Mainstream
  • Historical Fiction

At least 5 qualifying division entries are required to award a prize in that division. 

Co-authored books are allowed; anthologies to which the author has contributed a story are not. 


The contest is open to all MWA members in good standing. To enter, submit publication information, including a cover image, via the contest submission form. If you are not yet logged into the member area, you will be prompted to do so.

Authors are not required to submit copies of their book; however, they are encouraged to negotiate a lower ebook price with their publisher for MWA members during the contest period so that members can access their books more easily. 

Submission period is November 1, 2016 – December 31, 2016. 

Authors must score at least 4 other entries, in a genre division other than the one submitted to.  Entries whose authors do not fulfill this requirement will not be considered for prizes. 


Winners will be chosen by the MWA membership, scoring entries on a 1 to 10 scale.  Scores will be averaged to determine winners.   

MWA members in good standing may score entries, one score per entry (details to follow).

Critique sheets will not be given. 

At least 5 qualifying entries are required to award a prize in a genre division. 

Entries receiving fewer than 5 scores will not be considered for prizes. 

Awards will be announced at the MWA conference, March 25, 2017

Scoring period is January 1, 2017 - March 1, 2017.  


Log into your member account to view / use: 



Congratulations to the New MWA Board

On Saturday, June 11, MWA held its annual general board meeting with members from across the state. In addition to having a thorough discussion regarding the details of our 2017 Writers' Conference, the existing board held elections for the upcoming 2-year term.

We are very happy to announce the 2016-2018 MWA Board of Directors, effective July 1.

President: Eileen Haavik Mcintire
Vice President: Janet Ruck
Secretary: Chip Trimmier
Treasurer: Kimberly Goon
Communications Chair: Rus VanWestervelt
Conference Chair: Jessica Williams
Program Chair: Michelle Markey Butler
Membership Chair: Stephanie Sarwal
Publications Chair: Kit O’Neill
Member-at-Large: Flo McCahon
Member-at-Large: Larry Matthews

Please be sure to stay connected to MWA via the web ( and Facebook, Twitter, and even Instagram (@marylandwriters) for updates and opportunities for writers throughout Maryland.

Congratulations to the new board-elect members!


Congratulations to the MWA Contest Novel Winners

We are pleased to announce the winners of the annual MWA writing contest in our novel category!

This year our esteemed judge for the novel entries was Poupeh Missaghi, an Editor-at-Large at Asymptote. She is currently a PhD candidate at University of Denver’s Creative Writing program, Fiction. She holds a master’s in Creative Writing from Johns Hopkins University and a master’s in Translation Studies from Azad University of Tehran, Iran. Her work has appeared in The Feminist Wire, World Literature Today, Guernica, The Quarterly Conversation, The Barcelona Review, Short Fiction Magazine, The Baltimore Review, and elsewhere. We'd like to thank Poupeh for selecting our top three entries in the novel category. 

First Place: Three Skips of a Stone by Wendy Eckel 

Of this entry Poupeh said, "The narrative beautifully and painfully depicts the hardships of being forced to grow up earlier than one wishes to or is ready for as a result of circumstances beyond one’s control."

Second Place: Life, Liberty, and Inequality by David Connell

Of this entry Poupeh said, "The work captures various complicated layers of life as a black family, especially its young men and women, facing all kinds of racism in a historical moment of a nation. [It] succeeds to create characters we want to know more about in their different surroundings and roles." 

Third Place: Lola in Paradise by Barbara Mujica

Of this entry Poupeh said, "The work delves into issues of identity, capturing the hardships one faces finding the self and redefining it in different moments of life. As Lola faces various challenges in different historical moments and social surroundings, the narrative moves forth with an energy that engages us and makes us want to accompany her to learn more of her life as an individual and as part of her larger circles."

Congratultions writers! And thank you for submitting your work to the Maryland Writers' Association! It was an honor to read every submission and see the talented work our colleagues are creating.


Holly Morse-Ellington, Vice President 


Congratulations to the 2016 Poetry and Short Works Winners!

We received over 100 submissions from MWA members and non-members to the 2016 Writing Contest. Thank you to everyone who submitted! It was our pleasure to read so many strong works that invoke the written word's power to transport us to places and connect us to characters, familiar and unfamiliar. We would like to thank the talented authors Rafael Alvarez, Jason Tinney, and Poupeh Missaghi for serving as our judges. We are still in the process of selecting our winners in the novel category. But without further ado, the 2016 Poetry and Short Works Winners:


First Place

"Harvest Moon" by Ed Vojik 

Second Place

"Birth of the Girl-Child" by Rachel Hicks 

Third Place

"Early September Evenings" by Thomas Budesheim


First Place

"Big Daddy Drag and the Coal Queen of Carmichael County" by Mike Murphy

Second Place

"Ox" by Barbara Mujica

Third Place

"Something Happened" by Charles Heller