Authorlink Writer Signs 3-Book Deal With Berkley/Penguin

NEW YORK, NY/1/19/2006— Deb Baker, best-of-show winner in the Authorlink new Author Awards competition a few years ago, has landed a three-book, very nice deal with Berkley Prime Crime/Penguin Putnam USA.

“I wouldn’t be where I am now without Authorlink,” said Deb Baker. “In 2004, my manuscript, Murder Passes the Buck (then titled Death at Deer Run) won the Authorlink International First Novelist Award for Best Mystery then went on to win Best of Show. That award got the attention of agent Jacky Sach, partner in Bookends. (By the way, she’s a great agent).”

Deb Baker becomes the 91st author in recent years to sign a substantial book deal facilitated by Authorlink. And she’s one of more than 400 authors who have found agency representation as a result of the Authorlink connection. She’s the second author in the first month of 2006 to sign a major book or agency deal, one of which is yet to be announced and may include a motion picture deal.

Deb Baker becomes the 91st author in recent years to sign a substantial book deal facilitiated by Authorlink

Baker’s Authorlink award-winning mystery book is being published by Midnight Ink, a division of Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.

Midnight Ink is a new mystery imprint from Llewellyn. The parent company, a provider of works for personal growth and transformation of body, mind, and spirit, has been publishing since the 1960s. The larger publisher was hesitant to take a chance on Murder Passes the Buck because it was a regional mystery set in the Michigan Upper Peninsula. But Midnight imprint accepted it for publication. Deb’s first book, Murder Passes the Buck, is due out later this year. And Midnight will also publish a second one in that series soon.

Midnight Ink publishes suspenseful tales of all types: hard-boiled thrillers, cozies, historical mysteries, amateur sleuth novels, and more.

When Deb decided to begin a new series, she and her agent were brainstorming about subject matter, and they later heard Berkley was looking for someone to write a mystery series about dolls. Deb wrote three chapters and a synopsis, and Berkley Prime Crime offered her the three-book contract. The first book in the doll series also will be released later this year.

But it wasn’t always roses for Deb. “The Berkley deal fell into my lap, but I spent years getting there. I rewrote Murder Passes the Buck more times than I can remember. Every time I went to the mailbox, I had another fistful of rejections. My philosophy was: if I didn’t have any rejections that day or that week, I wasn’t trying hard enough. I never let them get me down.”

"Authorlink was very instrumental
in making this happen for me."

—Deb Baker


“Authorlink was very instrumental in making this happen for me,” said Baker. “I believe my agent signed me on because of the Authorlink award.”

And how long has she been writing? “I heard somewhere when I first began writing seriously that it takes about ten years to make it as an author. Whoever said that really had it figured out because this is my tenth year in the business. I still can’t believe it!”

Her advice to struggling writers trying to break into the business: “Never, ever give up. It’s like playing the odds, the more you play, the better your odds become. Read, continue to improve your writing skills, and keep going no matter what anyone tells you. If you want it bad enough, you’ll get it.”

Deb Baker and her husband live in Hartland, Wisconsin on a wooded ridge with two teenagers, two cats, and two border collies. Visit her website at