The Indie Author Project is thrilled to announce that Pascuala Herrera, author of Not Always a Valley of Tears, is the 2022 winner of the fourth annual Indie Author of the Year award. She previously was named winner of the state-wide de la Página a la Fama award from the Soon to Be Famous Illinois Author Project recognizing excellence in self or indie-published Spanish language literature.
Herrera, a self-published author from Franklin Park, IL was chosen from a stellar group of 18 authors who have each won regional Indie Author Contests held in 16 states as well as two Canadian provinces. The Indie Author of the Year is chosen by a team of industry experts on the basis of marketability, overall impact, personal brand, and potential for the author to break out. This year’s distinguished group of judges included:
- Carl Pritzkat, COO of Publishers Weekly
- Guy Gonzalez, Chief Content Officer for LibraryPass
- Leslye Penelope, award-winning author with St. Martin’s Press
- Kiera Parrot, Director of Darien Public Library, Norwalk, CT
Herrera’s inspirational memoir tells the story of a strong Latina woman overcoming many obstacles to realize her dream. At the age of six, Pascuala who had many medical challenges including a disability that required her to use a wheelchair, immigrated from Mexico with her large family. Despite these difficulties, she completed her education including a Bachelors and Masters at DePaul University in Chicago. After graduating, she joined the faculty at Harper College where she worked with students with all types of disabilities. She continues to be very active in the movement for the rights of people with disabilities.
After losing her mother in 2018, Pascuala’s daughter encouraged her to turn her childhood stories into a memoir to celebrate the life of her mother. The result is a memoir filled with honest painful stories, simple yet joyous triumphs, and humor that will lead all readers to embrace their own struggles and realize that life is Not Always a Valley of Tears. Pascuala published the book in English as well as Spanish to reach the Latino community.
She commented, "Being the winner of the Soon to be Famous Illinois Author Project opened so many doors for me as a new indie author! I am thrilled and so grateful to have been selected as the Indie Author of the Year! There is nothing more rewarding than to know that my memoir is being recognized for this distinction and that my written words are available in libraries so that readers around the country can access my story. Once again, I am reminded that life is Not Always a Valley of Tears."