The Great Expectations 2017 Winners

~ a contest for unpublished works ~

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns about the winners or the contest, please contact the contest coordinator.



Brittany Lavery ~ Assistant Editor, HQN

First Place: Take Me Away by Jessie Gussman

Second Place: How a Heart Beats by Stacie Kaye

Third Place: Discovering Serenity by Haley Burke

Honorable Mention: What He Wants by Jessie Gussman


Elle Keck ~ Assistant Editor, Avon Books

First Place: The Runaway Bride by Elizabeth King

Second Place: Love’s Redemption by Jeanine Englert

Third Place: The Art of the Deal by Suzanne Turner

Honorable Mention: The Seduction of Mrs. Smith by Elizabeth Everett


Raela Schoenherr ~ Acquisitions Editor, Bethany House

First Place: Fresh Brewed Love by Amanda Wen

Second Place: At Bealtaine’s Bidding by Mary-Teresa Heath

Third Place: Stolen Vows by Darlene L Turner

Honorable Mention: A Texas Lady by Elizabeth Lukinuk


Marla Daniels ~ Assistant Editor, Simon and Schuster

First Place: Simple Acts of Grace by Adriana Allegri

Second Place: What Would Ginger Do? by Kimberly MacCarron

Third Place: The Nine Lives of Eric Merry by Aubrey Wynne

Honorable Mention: Soul Song by Rayn Ellis


Lexi Smail ~ Assistant Editor, Grand Central Publishing

First Place: Lovely Digits by Jeanine Englert *

Second Place: Hit and Run by Lori Matthews

Third Place: Forbidden Paradise by Barbara Forlenza *

Honorable Mention: Emerald: Drone by Alan Chaput


Madeleine Colavita ~ Associate Editor, Hachette Book Group

First Place: Take the Lead by Alexis Daria

Second Place: Hit Me with Your Best Shot by PJ Ryley

Third Place: Tame My Racing Heart by Kelly Duff

Honorable Mention: Miracle on Tenth Avenue by Gabrielle Luthy

(Alternate Earth, Dystopian, Fantasy, Futuristic, Paranormal, Time Travel)

Kristine Swartz ~ Associate Editor, The Berkley Publishing Group

First Place: Bless Your Heart, and Other Southern Curses by Heather Leonard *

Second Place: Praetorian Rising by Lisa Knight *

Third Place: Burn for Me by Christal Murphy

Honorable Mention: Leap of Fate by Kimberly MacCarron


Alice Jerman ~ Associate Editor, HarperCollins

First Place: Loving Outside the Lines by Kimberly MacCarron

Second Place: Mouthful by C.R. Grissom

Third Place (tied): All the Feels by Kimberly MacCarron

Third Place (tied): Unconditional by Kimberly MacCarron

Honorable Mention: Covenant Park by Christine Gunderson

* denotes request for partial manuscript

** denotes request for full manuscript

If you have any questions, please contact the contest coordinator.