First Author, First Book

Sun., June 30
10:30-11:30 a.m.
Sheraton Chicago, Ontario Room

This traditional book event features first time authors Janice Clark, Matthew Guinn, Amy Gail Hansen, Elliott Holt, Jason Mott, Jessica Soffer, and Kent Wascom. Learn about how they got published and their writing disciplines. The program will be moderated by Barbara Hoffert, editor of Library Journal’s Prepub Alert. An author signing will follow. Some books will be given away and others will be sold at a generous discount.

Janice Clark (photo credit: Chris Kirzeder)Janice Clark

The Rathbones, Doubleday/Random House
Aug. 2013; $26.95; 978-0-385-53693-6

Janice Clark is a writer and designer living in Chicago. She grew up in Mystic, Conn. (land of whaling and pizza), and earned an MFA in writing at New York University. The line drawings in the book were done by the author herself.




Matthew Guinn (photo credit: Maude Schuyler Clay)Matthew Guinn

The Resurrectionist, W. W. Norton & Company
July 2013; $25.95; 978-0-393-23931-7

A native of Atlanta, Matthew Guinn holds degrees in English from the University of Georgia, the University of Mississippi, and the University of South Carolina, where he was personal assistant to the late James Dickey. He lives in Jackson, Miss.




Amy Gail HansenAmy Gail Hansen

The Butterfly Sister, William Morrow/HarperCollins
Aug. 2013; $14.99; 978-0-062-23462-9

Born in the Chicago suburbs, Amy Gail Hansen spent her early childhood near New Orleans. She holds a BA in English from Carthage College in Kenosha, Wis. A former English teacher, she works as a freelance writer and journalist in suburban Chicago, where she lives with her husband and three children. The Butterfly Sister is her debut novel.



Elliott Holt (photo credit: Rebecca Zeller)Elliott Holt

You Are One of Them, Penguin
May 2013; $25.95; 978-1-594-20528-6

Elliott Holt was born and raised in Washington, D.C., and has lived in cities all over the world. A former copywriter who worked at advertising agencies in Moscow, London, and New York, Holt attended the MFA program at Brooklyn College at night while working full time in Manhattan during the day. Her short fiction has been published in Guernica, Kenyon Review, Bellevue Literary Review and The Pushcart Prize XXXV (2011 anthology). In addition to winning a Pushcart Prize, she was the runner-up of the 2011 PEN Emerging Writers Award.


Jason MottJason Mott

The Returned, Harlequin/MIRA
Aug. 2013; $24.95; 978-0-778-31533-9

Jason Mott lives in southeastern North Carolina. He has a BFA in fiction and an MFA in poetry, both from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington. His poetry and fiction has appeared in various journals such as Prick of the Spindle, The Thomas Wolfe Review, The Kakalak Anthology of Carolina Poets, Measure and Chautauqua.  He was nominated for a 2009 Pushcart Prize award.


Jessica Soffer (photo credit: Beowulf Sheehan)Jessica Soffer

Tomorrow There Will Be Apricots, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
April 2013; $24; 978-0-547-75926-5

Jessica Soffer earned an MFA at Hunter College. A Hertog Fellow and recipient of the Bernard Cohen Prize, her work has appeared in Granta and the Tottenville Review. She teaches fiction at Connecticut College. Her father, a painter and sculptor, immigrated from Iraq to the U.S. in 1948.





Kent Wascom (photo credit: John Wang)Kent Wascom

The Blood of Heaven, Grove Atlantic/Perseus
June 2013; $25; 978-0-802-12118-9

Kent Wascom was born in New Orleans in 1986, attended Louisiana State University and received his MFA from Florida State University. He was awarded the 2012 Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival Prize for Fiction.