Meet the 2017 Query Kombat judges!

Time for our AMAZING lineup of judges for this year’s Query Kombat tournament. Many of them were contestants in prior contests. We’ve worked hard to find authors that form a diverse group of opinions, talents, and specialties from all categories and genres.
Query Kombat would not be possible without the wonderful people who donate their time to help. For this month-long contest, we’ve recruited forty-five industry professionals to critique entries and vote for a winner of each matchup. Each and every one of these judges is participating out of the kindness of their heart, so please join the QK Crew in thanking them for volunteering.
Remember that the best way to thank judges for their time is to buy their books. Michelle has compiled a Goodreads list to make finding the judges’ books easier, and they’ve written some great stuff. Also be sure to follow the judges on Twitter. 
On Friday, May 12th, we’ll be hosting a Twitter party where writers can reach out to the judges and ask questions about their entries, writing, querying, etc. Join us at 3:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. EST. The hashtag will be #QKChat. 
We’ll have a second chat to calm raw nerves on May 23rd at 3:00 pm and 8:00 pm. 
There are so many judges this year, we’re breaking the bios down across all three host blogs. Go here to see them all: MikeLaura, and Michelle. For a rule refresher, click here. 

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Now, without further ado, I’d like to introduce one set of judges for Query Kombat 2017.

Betsy Aldredge

Betsy Aldredge is the co-author (with Carrie DuBois-Shaw) of the upcoming YA romance, “Sasquatch, Love, and Imaginary Things” (Simon Pulse, August 8, 2017), which has been called “the most hilarious, charming, feminist Sasquatch-hunting book ever to grace a bookshelf,” by author Alison Cherry and “a delightfully quirky and hilarious debut,” by Darcy Woods. A retelling of Pride and Prejudice, focusing on a family of Jewish Bigfoot hunters, SASQUATCH was the Grand Champion of Query Kombat in 2014. 


Roselle Lim

Roselle is a Chinese-Filipino writer who weaves contemporary fairytales sprinkled with magical realism. She is repped by Jenny Bent at The Bent Agency.

Jessica always thought her penmanship would improve with age. She even wished for it on her eleventh birthday. To improve her legibility and speed, she hijacked her grandma’s typewriter—a really cool one with white correction tape—and started creating fictional worlds. 

That same grandma took Jessica to her first writers’ group meeting where she shared a story about fairies. The writing sucked, but with time, her craft began to improve. Sadly, her penmanship has not.

Today she writes Contemporary and Speculative Fiction for Young Adults. Story ideas often strike at inopportune times, and she’s been known to text herself reminders from under the covers. 

Her debut novel, BODY PARTS, comes out August 15, 2017. 

To Preorder: Amazon or BN


Kaitlin Hundscheid

Kaitlin is an Earl Grey junkie in the land of sweet tea. After devouring the complete works of Lucy Maud Montgomery during a nasty bout of childhood flu, she was convinced she’d been born in the wrong era and started writing to escape her mundane, eight-year-old life. Kaitlin is nw a middle grade writer in Birmingham, Alabama, currently learning how to juggle revisions, a newborn, and a bossy corgi. She is an alumna of ’15 Query Kombat and ‘16 Pitch Wars and is represented by Catherine Drayton of InkWell Management.

Elizabeth Roderick

Elizabeth is a freelance editor and the author of the LGBT romantic suspense novel, Love or Money, and the Own Voices magical realism The Other Place Series, which deals with abuse, addiction, PTSD, and psychosis. She has written eleven other novels in a wide range of genres, which are in various stages of revision and pitching.
She grew up as a barefoot ruffian on a fruit orchard near Yakima, in the eastern part of Washington State. After weathering the grunge revolution and devolution and migrating up and down the West Coast, she is back in Yakima, where she lives in a (mostly) off-grid tiny house she renovated and built herself, and grows most of her own food.
She earned a bachelor’s degree from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington, and worked for many years as a paralegal and translator. She is a musician and songwriter, and has played in many bands, rocking some instruments she doesn’t even know the real names for, but mostly guitar, bass and keyboards.
Elizabeth is a mentally ill advocate, and believes if people get to know those who live on the fringes of society, both in stories and in real life, they’ll find them more likeable than they originally thought.

Find her on:  Amazon I Goodreads I Twitter I Facebook I Website  I

Natasha Raulerson

Natasha grew up as a tomboy hanging with the guys, getting skinned knees, and swimming in the South Florida sun. Tattoos, Jack Daniels, and books are three of her favorite things. By day, she’s a fulltime mom, wife, student, and author. By night, well she’s still all those things, often sacrificing sleep to create stories, hang with the family, and get snuggle attacks from her two spoiled pups. She is represented by the amazing Laura Bradford of The Bradford Literary Agency.

Nia is a YA and Adult SFF writer represented by Caitie Flum at Liza Dawson Associates. She is an alumni of the University of Southern California (Fight On!) and the University of Texas. She has an undergraduate degree in Biology and graduate degrees in Public Health and Teaching. By day she teaches English and Biology, by night she writes strong, kickass heroines who are perfectly capable of saving themselves, and by way of dreams she is the Khaleesi, Mother of Dragons, sailing to Westeros to seize the Iron Throne. Hey, a girl can daydream right?

Dan Koboldt

Dan is a fantasy/science fiction writer and the author of the Gateways to Alissia series with Harper Voyager. As a genetics researcher, he has co-authored more than 70 publications in NatureScienceThe New England Journal of Medicine, and other scientific journals. His Science in Sci-fi, Fact in Fantasy blog series tackles scientific, technical, and historical elements of SF/F with input from experts in the field. 

Dan is also an avid deer hunter and outdoorsman. He lives with his wife and children in Ohio, where the deer take their revenge by eating the flowers in his backyard. You can find him on Twitter and Facebook.
To Buy: Amazon or B&N

Isabel Davis is a Young Adult writer represented by Mary Moore of Kimberly Cameron & Associates. She majored in Creative Writing from the University of Central Florida, and currently runs her letterpress and stationery company, 9th Letter Press, where she gets to write and design greeting cards for a living. In 2015, Isabel was a Pitch Wars mentee, and the following year she joined as a mentor. Her 2016 mentee went on to land an agent with her PW manuscript. 


Michael Mammay is a soldier and a science fiction writer. He usually writes about soldiers. Go figure. He will soon be retiring from the military and beginning a second career as a literature teacher. He’s represented by Lisa Rodgers of JABberwocky literary. You can find him on twitter (way too often) @michaelmammay, or visit his website at
KD Proctor

 KD Proctor loved college so much that when it came time to graduate, she didn’t want to leave.  Trading in her textbooks for student handbooks and policy manuals, she began a career in College Student Personnel and she fulfilled her wish to stay on a college campus forever.  Her mother, however, if glad she’s finally using that English degree. 
KD lives in West Central, Minnesota with her husband and fur-kids.  She likes to write fun twists on the usual tropes that we all love. Her characters are smart, funny, and always swoony.  And yes. They always get their happily ever after. 
Before being accepted for publication, KD’s debut novel, MEET ME UNDER THE STARS (formerly titled IF YOU’RE EVER IN TOWN), was the 2016 YARWA winner for the New Adult category.  
Mara Frisch
Mara is a middle grade writer and former nonprofit director.
Her debut novel, Seeing My Sister, is currently out on submission. Mara is represented by Mark Gottlieb at Trident Media Group and is proud to be a Sun vs. Snow alum. Mara received her bachelor’s of arts in psychology and speech communications from Miami University of Ohio. She has her master’s in education with a concentration in middle childhood and literacy from University of Cincinnati. When not writing, Mara enjoys hiking in the mountains of Israel, flying on trapezes, and eating dried mangoes. She currently lives in Jerusalem, Israel.
Schari Schwarz

Shari lives in Ft. Collins, Colorado with her husband and their four boys. TREASURE AT LURE LAKE is her debut middle grade novel which reflects her love for a good survival adventure story. When she’s not reading or writing, Shari can be found freelance editing, weight-lifting, gardening or watching her boys play various sports. She frequently daydreams of exploring Oregon Coast beaches or plotting out her next children’s book.

Buy: Amazon or BN

Amy Trueblood     
A devotee of reading and writing from a very young age, Amy grew up surrounded by books. After stints working in entertainment and advertising, she began writing her first manuscript and has never looked back. Her published work has appeared in The Fall and Summer’s Edge short story collections as well as Pen & Muses’ first Dark Carnival collection. To learn more about Amy, check out her blog, Chasing The Crazies, or follow her on Twitter or Tumblr.

Max Wirestone

Max Wirestone is the writer of the Dahlia Moss mystery series– the most recent of which, ASTONISHING MISTAKES, came out in March. He lives in Lawrence, Kansas with his husband, his son, a very old dog, and more books than a reasonable person should own.

Check out his website or follow him on twitter at @maxwires.

Buy: Amazon or BN

Remember to check out Mike’s blog and Michelle’s blog to see the other two-thirds of the judges! It’s going to be a great contest this year. I can’t wait to get started.

The agents will be revealed next Friday. And I’ll have judge guest blogs going up until the sub window opens on May 17. Get more information about the contest here.

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