Announcing the winners of the 2020 Minnesota Author Project!

Congratulations to the winners of the 2020 Minnesota Author Project! This is the third year celebrating the contest, which recognizes the best indie-published authors in Minnesota.

The Wolf’s Trail (Adult Fiction)

Thomas D. Peacock


The Stolen Kingdom (YA Fiction)

Bethany Atazadeh








New in 2020 is Minnesota Author Project: Communities Create. Communities Create celebrates Minnesota organizations and communities that are producing written creative works.

Justice Makes a Difference (Communities Create)







Winners each received $1,000 and an honorary plaque. Prizes are sponsored by the Minnesota Library Foundation and BiblioLabs.

Read the winners now on BiblioBoard Library.

Join MN Writes MN Reads in celebrating these winners!

Finalist Feature: We Survivors

Category: Young Adult Fiction

Description: After disease and nuclear warfare decimate the world population, 17-year-old Nadia is sure she’s the last person left on Earth. She buries her before-the-end memories and focuses on survival. Then one night, she hears a voice on her radio and everything changes.

Nadia finds comfort in her new-found companions, but they also discover an unsettling thread tying them together: their shared birthdays. As they begin to unravel the mysteries surrounding their survival, they soon realize it was no accident, and that they could be in far more danger than they ever imagined…

Author: L.J. Thomas is a writer of speculative fiction. A native of South Dakota, she now lives in Minnesota with her husband and beagle-mix dog Tink. She works as an engineer by day and writes by night. In her free time she enjoys the great outdoors, traveling, reading, and daydreaming about other worlds. We Survivors is her first novel.

L.J.’s Local Library: Rochester Public Library

Winners will be announced at the 2020 Minnesota Library Association Annual Conference.

Finalist Feature: The Curse of Moose Lake

Category: Young Adult Fiction

Description: Phoenix and her brother Hawk are professional monster hunters—well, nearly. Still in training with the International Monster Slayers, a secret government agency that both defends and hunts mythical creatures, they are sent on their first real mission to prove their worth. When things go awry and the IMS is nearly exposed, their future as agents looks grim.

Given one last chance for redemption, the duo are sent to Moose Lake, Minnesota where there’s a docile population of werewolves to keep in check. Their assignment is supposed to be dull, but Moose Lake ends up being anything but boring.

When a mysterious black wolf appears and the werewolves under their charge start to become aggressive, they must uncover the city’s dark secret if they are to save not only the citizens but themselves.


Author: Bethany Helwig is the author of the successful International Monster Slayers series. She enjoys writing fantasy novels, composing music, creating art, and participating in various fandoms. She lives in a small town in Minnesota with her dog.

Bethany’s Local Library: Moose Lake Public Library

Winners will be announced at the 2020 Minnesota Library Association Annual Conference.