Sonoma Valley-inspired Author, Joanell Serra, Signs with E.L. Marker™ for Her Literary Novel

SALT LAKE CITY, UT May 16, 2017


An award-winning playwright also acclaimed for her short stories, Joanell Serra has a love for writing… just not novel writing.  At least that was the case, until her characters practically begged her to bring them to life in a full length novel.

Serra says, “The characters [from my short stories] kept popping up in each other’s stories.  After one editor read my stories, she gave me the bad news: it really needed to be a novel!  I dug back in and rewrote the story, tying all the storylines together.”

As a family therapist, Joanell Serra has keen insight into the theme of identity within the family, a theme she explores in her writing.  She also draws on her love for her home region in Sonoma County, California. Serra states, “I love the interesting layers of community here, across cultures and socioeconomic divides. The landscape is so lush and stunning, it literally inspires one to create.”

Once she finished her manuscript, Serra had a good idea what she wanted in a publisher. “I researched my options endlessly when it came time to share this story with the world. It’s a hard market for literary fiction, and I wanted my story to stay true to itself.”

After a fellow author in her community recommended WiDo Publishing™ Serra found that WiDo’s hybrid imprint, E.L. Marker, was exactly what she was looking for: publisher support with lots of creative control for the author.

Upon receiving the manuscript, submissions editor Joseph Jones was impressed with Serra’s work. “Joanell’s manuscript was really good,” he said, “and practically ready to be published as is. We were thrilled to offer Joanell a contract and look forward to working with her on this project.”

A voracious reader of everything from e-zines to works-in-progress from her friends, Serra also writes daily. Along with working on a play, blog and freelance writing, she has two more novels in the works.

Her passions include serving struggling teens, travel, immigration rights, her family, dogs and friends, a good cup of tea, a great novel, education, and the theater. She also will rarely turn down a glass of local Cabernet Sauvignon, which helped inspire her novel, set in California’s gorgeous Sonoma County.

Joanell Serra is a debut novelist as well as an award winning playwright and short story writer. She has published stories in Eclectica, Blue Lake Review, Black Fox Literary Magazine, Poydras Review, Limehawk and other periodicals. A member of Squaw Valley Community of Writers, she was nominated for the Million Writers Award in 2015.

Joanell grew up in Northern New Jersey and attended Rutgers University undergrad. After a brief visit to San Francisco, she packed her bags and headed west, where she met her husband the day she arrived. She has lived and worked in Northern California for over twenty-five years.  In addition to being a writer, Joanell works as a family therapist and organizational consultant, committed to advocating for social justice. In her free time, she enjoys her large tribe of children, family and friends. Learn more about Joanell by visiting her website and blog: and