The Crime Writers’ Association

Success by Former Debut Dagger Finalist

Perhaps changing titles can bring you success? Madeleine H Callway writes:

My book, originally entitled The Land of Sun and Fun, was shortlisted for the 2009 Debut Dagger. My agent changed the title to Gunning for Bear and in 2012 it was a finalist for Canada’s Unhanged Arthur award for best unpublished manuscript. My book was published in 2014 by Seraphim Editions and my publisher changed the title yet again to Windigo Fire.

Windigo Fire received very positive reviews. It was a Huffington Post Book for Book Club selection and Margaret Cannon, the crime fiction critic of Canada’s national newspaper, The Globe and Mail, called me “a writer to watch”. In 2015, Windigo Fire was a finalist for the Arthur Ellis Best First Novel award.

Since Windigo Fire was published, my novella, Glow Grass, has been a finalist for the 2016 Arthur Ellis Best Novella award.

Being a Debut Dagger finalist was wonderful for me personally and definitely led to Windigo Fire being traditionally published. I will always be grateful to the CWA for helping new authors.

Check out Madeleine’s website and blog of the weird and wonderful:



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