This weekend, at the 49th annual Bouchercon world mystery convention, Kellye Garrett won the Anthony Award for Best First Novel for her book, HOLLYWOOD HOMICIDE. HOLLYWOOD HOMICIDE has also won the Agatha Award for Best First Novel, the Lefty Award for Best Debut, and an IPPY Gold Medal (Independent Publisher Award) for Best First Book, Fiction. It was nominated for Macavity and Barry Awards.

I was so thrilled to be there to see her win (yet another) a well-deserved award for her funny mystery about a semi-famous, mega-broke black actress who solves a hit-and-run murder. Kellye is the first black woman to win the award since Barbara Neely did in 1993, and her speech was extraordinary, citing statistics about how few writers of color have published crime fiction, not just now but for all time. She said: “We need to stop treating diverse writers as a trend and start treating them as the status quo.” I couldn’t be prouder to be her agent.

Kellye and her Anthony Award, custom-designed by a local artist with input from author Lisa Unger; the award

  

Kellye and her agent, Michelle Richter; Kellye’s editor from Midnight Ink, Terri Bischoff, with Kellye