Thursday, February 14, 2013

Poisoned Pen Press

This past week, there's been a great deal of discussion on DorothyL, the mystery listserv, about Poisoned Pen Press, and the quality of mysteries that come from that publisher. Someone who raved about Jeffrey Siger's books wanted to know who else was published by Poisoned Pen. The list is lengthy, so I'm going to miss some, but it includes Vicki Delany, Betty Webb, Donis Casey, Frederick Ramsey, K.J. Larsen, Mary Anna Evans, Triss Stein, Kerry Greenwood, Steven Havill, James Sallis. Yesterday, Poisoned Pen Press announced their new contest, with the possibility that someone could become their latest published author.

Poisoned Pen Press invites aspiring mystery novelists to write, win, publish:
Poisoned Pen Press Now Accepting Submissions for the Second Annual Discover Mystery Award;
will award a $1000 cash prize and publishing contract to this year’s winner

Scottsdale, Arizona– Poisoned Pen Press is now accepting entries for its second annual Discover Mystery Award. A first book contest specifically for unpublished writers trying to break into the mystery genre, the Discover Mystery Award will include a $1000 cash prize, the Discover Mystery title, and a publishing contract from Poisoned Pen Press.

Writers unpublished within the mystery genre are invited to submit their original mystery fiction manuscripts of between 60,000 and 90,000 words. Entries must be received by 11:59 PM Pacific on March 30, 2013. The Discover Mystery Award will be announced on May 31, 2013.

A $20 entry fee applies for all submissions. For full details, eligibility requirements, and manuscript submission instructions, visit:

Entries submitted for the Discover Mystery Award will be judged by members of the Poisoned Pen Press editorial staff, along with an as-yet-to-be-named celebrity guest judge.

Poisoned Pen Press published Ronald Sharp’s No Regrets, No Remorse, the winner of 2012 Discover Mystery Award, in November.

Jessica Tribble, Publisher at Poisoned Pen Press, stated, “ Poisoned Pen Press is always looking to discover something new, which is why we launched the Discover Mystery Award last year.  We were overwhelmed both by the volume and quality of submissions we received. While the competition was stiff, we were thrilled to publish No Regrets, No Remorse by Ronald Sharp, the winner of the first annual Discover Mystery Award. And now we are looking for the next winner.  We can’t wait to see what we discover.”

In addition to the grand prizes, Poisoned Pen Press will also provide support in publicizing the winning work, and sharing information with prominent booksellers. However, should no entry meet the standards of the editorial team, Poisoned Pen Press reserves the right not to declare a winner, or to offer the cash prize without publication.

Found in 1997, Poisoned Pen Press is an independent publisher specializing in the highest quality mystery books. Based in Scottsdale, Arizona, Poisoned Pen Press is one of the largest publishers of hardcover mysteries in the world.  Visit the new Poisoned Pen Press author blog and Discover Mystery™ at:


Joe Barone said...

I've noticed that some of my recent favorites have come from Poison Pen. I greatly appreciate publishers who try to look for ways to give so-far-non-published writers at least a chance to break the ice. Mostly, I prefer non-bestselling authors, and without houses like Poison Pen, there would be fewer of them.

SandyG265 said...

If anyone reads ebooks Poisoned Pen Press often has the first book in a number of mystery series available either for free or .99 on Amazon. Just search in the Kindle store for the publisher name and sort by price low to high.

Cathy said...

Poisoned Pen Press has long been one of my favorites, but that wouldn't come as any surprise to you, Lesa! :-)

Lesa said...

Well, now I know what others mean when they say their response doesn't always appear. I answered both Joe and Sandy earlier today, and the responses never appeared. Thanks for the comments. I agree, Joe. It's a terrific publishing company with settings and characters that are different from the run-of-the mill mysteries. Thanks for the additional comment about the PPP, Sandy. And, it doesn't come as a surprise, Cathy!

Anonymous said...

I love their books content-wise, but does anyone else think their books kinda look self-published sometimes? If they weren't hardcover (thus pretty much guaranteeing a traditional press) I'd probably pass them right by, assuming that it was some local self-pubber who got their books into the store on consignment. Seems like a press this respected can do better in that department.