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Mystery Writers Of America Names Follett and Maron 2013 Grand Masters

On December 3rd, 2012, Mystery Writer’s Of America (MWA) announced that Ken Follett and Margaret Maron have been chosen as its Grand Masters for 2013. The Grand Master Award represents the highest pinnacle of achievement in mystery writing and was established to acknowledge those who’ve made important contributions to the genre, as well as having bodies of work that are both significant and of consistent high quality. The awards will be presented at the Edgar Awards Banquet at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in New York City on Thursday, May 2nd, 2013.
Upon learning of his selection, Follett said, “I am delighted and honored. My first successful book, Eye of the Needle, won the Edgar for Best Novel more than thirty years ago. I’m thrilled to know that my fellow writers still hold me in such high regard.”

The best-selling author of twenty novels, Follett has sold more than 100 million books since he began writing in the 1970s. After mastering the mystery genre, he expanded into literary epic fiction, TV, movies and children’s books. Following Eye of the Needle, Follett’s string of suspenseful and original thrillers included Triple, The Key to Rebecca, The Man from St. Petersburg and Lie Down with Lions. His sweeping historical drama Pillars of the Earth has been on bestseller lists for years, followed by World Without End, Fall of Giants, and Winter of the World.  Follett lives in the U.K.

Margaret Maron is the author of twenty-six novels and two short story collections. Her first mystery, One Coffee With, was published in 1981, and was the beginning of her Sigrid Harald series featuring a New York City police officer. But it was her 1992 fictional return to her North Carolina roots with Bootlegger’s Daughter (the first of the Deborah Knott series) that won Maron her first Edgar, Agatha, Anthony and Macavity awards. Maron’s works are on the reading lists of courses in contemporary Southern literature and have been translated into sixteen languages. She has served as president of Sisters in Crime, the American Crime Writers League, and Mystery Writers of America. She and her husband live on her family’s century-old farm a few miles southeast of Raleigh, which inspired the setting for Bootlegger’s Daughter.

On learning she was chosen as Grand Master, Maron said, “Me? It still hasn’t fully sunk in. I keep remembering my first MWA dinner when I was half-afraid that I would be asked to leave because I only had a few short stories and a half-published book to my name, so how could I possibly belong there with those luminaries?  Grand Master?  Wow!”

Previous Grand Master recipients include Martha Grimes, Sara Paretsky, Dorothy Gilman, James Lee Burke, Sue Grafton, Bill Pronzini, Stephen King, Marcia Muller, Dick Francis, Mary Higgins Clark, Lawrence Block, P.D. James, Ellery Queen, Daphne du Maurier, Alfred Hitchcock, Graham Greene, and Agatha Christie.

The Mysterious Galaxy Bookstore in San Diego and Redondo Beach, California, and veteran newspaper journalist Oline Cogdill will receive the 2013 Raven Awards. Established in 1953, the award recognizes outstanding achievement in the mystery field outside the realm of creative writing.

Previous Raven winners include Centuries & Sleuths Bookstore in Chicago, Once Upon a Crime Bookstore in Minneapolis, Mystery Lovers Bookstore in Oakmont, PA, Kate’s Mystery Books in Cambridge, MA, and The Poe House in Baltimore, MD.

The 2013 Ellery Queen Award will be given to Johnny Temple, founder and editor of Akashic Books. The Ellery Queen award is given to editors or publishers who have distinguished themselves by their generous and wide-ranging support of the genre.

Previous Ellery Queen winners include Joe Meyers of the Connecticut Post/Hearst Media News Group, Kate Stine and Brian Skupin, co-publishers of Mystery Scene Magazine, Carolyn Marino, Vice President/Executive Editor, Harper Collins, and Ed Gorman.

The Edgar Awards, or “Edgars,” as they are commonly known, are named after MWA’s patron saint Edgar Allan Poe and are presented to authors of distinguished work in various categories. MWA is the premier organization for mystery writers, professionals allied to the crime-writing field, aspiring crime writers, and those who are devoted to the genre. The organization encompasses more than 3,000 members including authors of fiction and non-fiction books, screen and television writers, as well as publishers, editors, and literary agents. For more information on Mystery Writers of America, please visit the website: www.mysterywriters.org.

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