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February 28, 2012, Sisters, Oregon—Deep River Books is pleased to announce the Grand Prize winners in two categories, Fiction and Non-Fiction, in their 3rd Annual Writer’s Contest. With an overwhelming response of more than four hundred contestants, judges worked overtime to narrow down the entries and select the two best Christian manuscripts as winners.

“We are certainly pleased with the quantity of entries we received, but more so with the quality of the entries submitted. This was a very hard decision for the judges to make, since there were so many excellent manuscripts to choose from,” said Bill Carmichael, Publisher and CEO of Deep River Books. “What made this year so exciting was that we were able to choose two winners instead of one. We feel both of these manuscripts will be well received in the Christian marketplace.”

For the first time, Deep River Books decided to award the Grand Prize contest winners with a royalty-based publishing contract from Carmichael Publishing (a division of Deep River Books). Also new this year, categories were separated between Fiction and Non-Fiction allowing two Grand Prize winners to emerge.

Stan Bednarz took home a Grand Prize when he catapulted to the top of the Fiction category with a gripping mystery/suspense called Miracle on Snowbird Lake. The book tells of a pastor who has to live through the nightmare of his daughter being abducted. As a man of fractured faith—Pastor Davis’ love for his daughter won’t let him give up his search. He follows a path which leads him to some unseemly characters and places leaving him to wonder if his faith, family and ministry can survive. It’s a story of God’s redemptive purpose, teaching us how love can and does conquer all.

Bednarz was elated at being selected and said, “Having won this contest is a tremendous opportunity! When I heard the news, I literally wept for joy. I truly believe God wired me for words, and he is able to do beyond what we ask or think."

The Non-Fiction category Grand Prize was awarded to Matthew Ouellette for his manuscript tentatively titled Thinking Inside the Bell, Trying to Impress God Over a Taco. What began as a journal scratched onto four Taco Bell® napkins, grew to a full-fledged account of one man’s desire to impress God. In this book, Matthew, a youth pastor, wrestles with burning questions such as—Is it even possible to impress God? Does He regret creating free-will? Do nuns enjoy roller coasters? It’s a wildly sarcastic, yet wonderfully sincere book written in the style of bestselling author Donald Miller, in which you journey into the mind of Ouellette…and perhaps your own.

Ouellette said, “God has an extraordinary way of using ordinary people, and I am both humbled and excited to be one of them. Thank you, Deep River Books for giving ordinary people a chance!”

Along with the Grand Prize winners, judges chose a 2nd Place and 3rd Place prize winner, as well as recognition for those that were finalist runner-ups. To read more about these authors and the other winners please visit