Young Adult Fiction Writing Contest 2012

And the Winners Are…!

Marie Millard

Marie Millard


Marie Millard, First Place
“One for All” 

Marie Millard teaches private music lessons, walks dogs, and writes songs and
fiction. She lives with her husband and daughter in beautiful Sonoma County. One
For All
is her first novel.

To read the story, click One for All.

Jan Edwards

Jan Edwards


Jan Edwards, Second Place
“Ghost Light” 

Jan Edwards was inspired to write a novel for young adults when her short story about teens was awarded first place by Redwood Writers last year. A member of the Mendocino branch, she will have a piece in the first Writers of the Mendocino Coast Anthology, At the Edge. Her published work includes political essays and a novel, Anarchist Farm. She struggle with metaphors on the Point Arena ridge assisted by her dog, Victor Hugo. To read the story, click Ghost Light.


Pamela Pizzimenti

Pamela Pizzimenti

Pamela Pizzimenti, Third Place
“When Blossoms Fall” 

Pamela Pizzimenti is the author of the award winning young adult novel The River Whispers and is currently working on two more YA books. She was an educator for over 7 years, where she enjoyed learning from her students what kinds of stories and themes young adults enjoy reading. She received her BA in Mass Communications from California State University, East Bay. Prior to becoming a teacher, she was a radio personality for seven years in California’s central valley under the name Kellie McCoy. To read the story, click When Blossoms Fall.


Natasha YimContest Chair: Natasha Yim
Natasha Yim is an author, freelance writer, and playwright. Her picture book, Otto’s Rainy Day (Charlesbridge Publishing) was a Kids’ Pick of the Lists selection. She has published articles in Highlights for Children, Appleseeds, and Faces magazines, and her ten-minute plays have been performed in venues around Northern California, Los Angeles, and Sydney, Australia. Her picture book biography, Cixi, The Dragon Empress, was released by Goosebottom Books ( in fall 2011. Natasha’s upcoming books, Sacajawea of the Shoshone (Goosebottom Books) is due out in fall 2012, and Goldy Luck and the Three Pandas (Charlesbridge Publishing) is slated for a January 2014 release.

Contest Judges

Jody GehrmanJody Gehrman
Jody Gehrman is the author of six novels and numerous plays. Babe in Boyland is her most recent Young Adult novel, published in 2011 by Penguin’s Dial books. Her other YA novels include Confessions of a Triple Shot Betty (Penguin, 2008), and Triple Shot Bettys in Love (Penguin, 2009). She is also the author of the adult novels: Notes from the Backseat, Tart, and Summer in the Land of Skin. Her plays have been produced in Ashland, New York, San Francisco, and L.A. She and her husband David Wolf won the New Generation Playwrights Award for their one-act, “Jake Savage, Jungle P.I.She is a professor of English at Mendocino College. For more about Jody, check out her website,


Ginny RorbyGinny Rorby
Ginny Rorby holds an undergraduate degree in Biology from the University of Miami, an MFA in Creative Writing from the Florida International University, and is the author of four novels for Young Adults: Dolphin Sky (Putnam, ’96); Hurt Go Happy (Tor Books, ’06) which won the American Library Association’s Schneider Family Book Award (2008), and has also been nominated for six state reading awards; The Outside of a Horse (Dial Penguin,’10), a Scholastic Book Fair selection; and Lost in the River of Grass (Lerner Books ‘11), a Junior Library Guild, Scholastic Book Fair selection, and a 2012/2013 Sunshine State Young Readers Award nominee. For more about Ginny, check out her website,


Deborah HalversonDeborah Halverson
Deborah Halverson is the award-winning author of Writing Young Adult Fiction For Dummies, two teen novels, Honk If You Hate Me (Delacorte/Random House) and Big Mouth (Delacorte/Random House), a forthcoming picture book Letters to Santa, and three books in the upcoming series for struggling readers, Remix. She is also the founder of the popular writers’ advice website and a former editor with Harcourt Children’s Books. She freelance edits fiction and non-fiction for both published authors and writers seeking their first book deals. For more about Deborah, check out her website at