You read that right! Mistress of Legend doesn’t even come out for 22 more days, and it’s already on its way to its first award! It has been short-listed for the Chaucer Award for historical fiction talking place prior to 1750 by Chanticleer Reviews.
I’m especially honored to be on the list with my friend, the amazing writer Anna Belfrage, who is shortlisted for not one, but two novels! And there’s another Arthurian book on the list. I hope this is the beginning of trend!
Remember how The Once and Future Queen won Non-fiction Book of the Year in the Author’s Circle awards not long ago?
Well, I just found out that a really good friend of mine, Sara Dahmen’s, novel Widow won for Fiction Book of the Year! I reviewed Widow a while back, under its original title, Dr. Kinney’s Housekeeper. It’s definitely one to put on your list immediately.
I can’t tell you how thrilled I am that we were both honored in the same year. Sara and I met at the Chanticleer Author’s Conference in 2016, just after Daughter of Destiny was published. (That’s the same event at which Daughter was named Book of the Year by Chanticleer Reviews.) We have been to several conferences together and are pretty close online. I am so proud of her.
Holy crap, y’all. I just found out that The Once and Future Queen was named Non-fiction Book of the Year by Author’s Circle, the same group that named Camelot’s Queen Fiction Book of the Year last year.
I don’t even know what to do with this. I didn’t even know the book was in the running this year. At the time I sent my ARC (Advanced Reader’s Copy) into the contest, they told me it wouldn’t be in the contest until 2019 because I missed the deadline (through no fault of my own; long story.) I guess they changed their minds.
I can’t even begin to process that this is my third Book of the Year designation. Much less out of five books. I never thought it would happen once…but three times…I don’t even know what to do with that.
As the notification came in, I was finishing the second/third (I’m not sure) draft of Mistress of Legend. No pressure on that one…not at all!
I think I’m supposed to post something all professional and humble when something like this happens. But you’re getting my real, honest-to-God reaction. If you need me, I’ll be on my patio, staring off into space and repeating “Oh my God,” over and over…
It’s contest season, and I’m thrilled to announce that The Once and Future Queen took home two awards at this year’s Next Generation Indie Book Awards! It won (in a tie) in the General Non-fiction category and is a finalist in the Historical Non-fiction category. They give out medals to both finalists and winners, so I will have a gold and silver to add to my collection!
I’m so happy that is book got recognition from my peers. I wrote it out of passion for Guinevere and to make a contribution to Arthurian scholarship, knowing it wouldn’t likely sell much because the topic is so niche. To have it honored gives me a great boost of confidence going into my next non-fiction books and is great reassurance I didn’t write this book for nothing. (We writers can be so insecure, you know.) Plus, it will be displayed at the American Library Association (ALA) Conference, which is huge.
Hi everyone! Just a quick note to share the good news that Madame Presidentess is a finalist in the Eric Hoffer Book Awards. It didn’t end up winning, but it is on the list with my friend Neal Katz’s book Outrageous, which is also about Victoria, which is an honor. As I told him, two books about Victoria on one prize list should be enough to change the cosmos, at least a little!
According to an email from the contest organizers, they had over 1,500 entries and those who finaled were in the top 10% of entrants.
The Indie BRAG Medallion, which honors the best in independently published books. This is my fourth Indie BRAG Medallion.
Here are some comments from the Indie BRAG reviewers:
“When I chose this book, I wanted to send out a warning to the author “I LOVE Guinevere stories and have read a great many of them. Well, good for you Ms. Evelina, this was not a disappointment! This is a very well researched book told in a very fluid and readable way. I will certainly be looking forward to the next book in this incredible story. Thank you.”
“This is a very thorough examination of Queen Guinevere in literature for at least 1000 years. It is well-researched and well-documented with an abundance of footnotes. There is a clear line discussing the changes in the character through the years. I enjoyed the book very much.”
“Extremely well-researched with comprehensive footnotes. An excellent compendium of scholarly research and fictional sources, both ancient and modern. A useful reference book to have in the library of anyone interested in this period.”
“This is a very well researched book with a number of new, to me, insights. I will be interested in reading what the author does next.”
The Once and Future Queen has been shortlisted in its first contest: The Chanticleer Reviews 2017 Instruction and Insight Non-Fiction Book Awards. We’ll find out if it takes home the Grand Prize in its category on April 21, or maybe even Book of the Year! (Hey, it can’t hurt to hope!)
I’ve also had some really fun things happen lately and if you don’t follow me on social media, you might have missed them:
A blogger told me that she’ll be using The Once and Future Queen as part of her sources for presentation she’s giving at her local library and that she has asked them to purchase my books for the library. This is proof that targeted blog tours can result in sales!
My audio book narrator for Been Searching for You, Ashley Clements gave the book a shout out on Instagram Live.
Today is a big day…one I’ve been dying to talk about this for months. Well, now I officially can!
DAUGHTER OF DESTINY HAS WON THE NORTH STREET BOOK PRIZE!
It is one of only three winners: nonfiction/memoir, general fiction and YA. They put it in the YA category. It’s not a YA book, but given Guinevere’s age and the fact that it is the “coming of age” part of her story, I can see why it landed there. But, I don’t care what you call it, as long as you like it, and the judges obviously did. Here are a few quotes from the official critique:
“Nicole Evelina’s Young Adult novel Daughter of Destiny is a lyrical, imagistic retelling of the Arthurian legend…The writer’s skill in creating a lushly imagistic fantasy world was a major reason for her first place award. Nicole Evelina has suceeded in creating a YA novel that is a pleasure for adults as well as teenagers to read. Although I am not normally a reader of fantasy fiction, I loved being immersed in the misty, magical land of Avalon.”
This huge for me, as big of a deal as my two Book of Year designations. In light of this win, I have point out one irony. The very first rejection Daughter of Destiny received was from an agent (who shall remain nameless) who said it “read like a bad YA novel.” I kid you not. And here it won in the YA category. 🙂 Just goes to show that you shouldn’t listen to the nay-sayers!
I can’t begin to tell you how thrilled I am that my debut novel continues to receive accolades more than two years after it was published. Thank you to everyone who has read it, reviewed it and supported it!!
PS – Mistress of Legend is shaping up nicely. It finally feels complex enough to stand beside the previous two books in the series.
1) I found out last night that both Been Searching for You (long contemporary) and Camelot’s Queen (mainstream with romantic elements) finaled in the Heart of Excellence Readers’ Choice Contest! That’s an RWA contest hosted by the Ancient City Romance Writers chapter.
2) A few days ago, Madame Presidentess was named an Honorable Mention in the Reader’s Favorite book awards in the fiction – historical personage category. It may not be a win, but it is still and honor (no pun intended), and it puts me in the company of Anna Belfrage, who blurbed both of the Guinevere books. She also received an Honorable Mention and a second book of hers was a finalist. That is the kind of company I want to keep!
3) I am hard at work on beta reader edits to The Once and Future Queen. I’m hoping for a late October release, but it may end up being early November. I will let you know for sure once my editor and proofreader have seen the book.
4) If you’re in St. Louis/St. Charles, Missouri, be sure to stop at Main Street Books. They are now selling all of my books!
I should have news on Madame Presidentess audio soon, so stay tuned for that…