Deanna R. Adams is an author of both fiction and nonfiction works. She is an instructor, popular speaker, and award-winning essayist. Her first book, Rock ’n’ Roll and the Cleveland Connection, was named a finalist for the Ohioana Award for nonfiction, and the ARSC Award (Association for Recorded Sound Collections) for excellence in research. Her novels include Peggy Sue Got Pregnant: A Rock ‘n’ Roll Love Story, and its sequel, Scoundrels & Dreamers. Other books are Confessions of a Not-So-Good Catholic Girl, Cleveland’s Rock and Roll Roots, and The Writer’s GPS: A Guide to Writing & Selling Your Book. Visit her online at deannaadams.com
Ian Adams is a landscape photographer, writer, and educator specializing in Ohio’s natural, rural, historical, and garden areas. Twenty-one books of his color photography have been published, including his most recent, A Photographer’s Guide to Ohio–Volume 2, which was released by Ohio University Press in April, 2015, and a centennial edition of Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens, published by the University of Akron Press in May, 2015. Ian has produced more than 60 Ohio calendars and conducted over 200 seminars and workshops in nature, garden, and digital photography throughout North America. He is an adjunct lecturer at Ohio State University’s Agricultural Technical Institute in Wooster, Ohio where he teaches digital photography. Ian shares a home in Cuyahoga Falls with two cats, Fuji and Spicer, and an assortment of cameras. Find him online at http://ianadamsphotography.com.
Mindee Arnett is the author of two young adult series: the Arkwell Academy series, a contemporary fantasy, and the sci-fi thriller Avalon. Her debut, The Nightmare Affair, was nominated for the YALSA Top Ten 2014 and the BFYA 2013. Avalon was a School Library Journal Best Book of the Year in 2014 as well as one of Indigo’s Best Teen Books of 2014. In addition, Avalon has been nominated for the Florida Teens Read List and the Eliot Rosewater Award. Polaris, the sequel to Avalon, received a starred review from School Library Journal.
Mindee has a Master of Arts in English literature with an emphasis in Creative Writing from Wright State University. She has a working background in both aircraft combat systems and database administration and security. She lives on a horse farm in Ohio with her husband, two kids, a couple of dogs, and an appropriate number of cats. When she’s not telling tales of magic, the supernatural, or outer space, she spends time riding horses and honing her first-person shooter gaming skills. Find her online at http://www.mindeearnett.com/.
Patricia Averbach, a Cleveland native, is the former director of the Chautauqua Writers’ Center in Chautauqua, New York. Her first novel, Painting Bridges dealt with historic issues in deaf education. It was described by Michelle Ross, critic for the Cleveland Plain Dealer, as “an intelligent, introspective and moving novel.” Averbach was the 2013 winner of the London based Lumen/Camden Prize for Poetry. Her poetry chapbook, Missing Persons, was featured in the Times of London Literary Supplement as one of the top poetry pamphlets of the year. For more on Averbach go to her website at patriciaaverbach.com.
With Chinese, Panamanian, and Salvadorian heritage, Alejandra Campos is a Hispanic voice like no other. Her polemic views on the subject of migration are a direct result of her personal experiences while living in El Salvador (one of the most violent countries in the Americas), Mexico, and the U.S.A. Traveling the world from a very young age, Alejandra settled in the United States and eventually became a naturalized citizen. Although her legal status has always been legitimate, her “adventures” in this country have mirrored those of illegal aliens in many ways. Alejandra’s outstanding academic background includes an Industrial Engineering degree, a M.S. in Food Science, and multiple academic awards. For more, visit amazon.com/Alejandra-Campos
Mary Kay Carson
Mary Kay Carson is an author of nonfiction books for young people. She began her writing career working on the classroom magazine SuperScience at Scholastic in New York City. Carson has been a full-time freelance writer for twenty years and is now the author of more than fifty books for kids and teachers about space, weather, nature, and other science and history topics. Her books include a number of titles in Houghton Mifflin Harcourt’s award-winning Scientists in the Field series, including The Park Scientists and The Bat Scientists, an ALA’s 2011 Notable Children’s Books for Middle Readers. Her book Exploring the Solar System was the 2009 recipient of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Children’s Literature Award and the State Library of Ohio selected Beyond the Solar System as a Choose to Read Ohio book for 2015 & 2016. Carson also writes magazine articles and educational materials for both students and adults and gives presentations at schools and conferences about nonfiction writing, the Underground Railroad, bats, the Wright brothers, the solar system, and other topics.
The author lives in Cincinnati with her photographer husband Tom Uhlman and their dog Ruby in a century-old house surrounded by urban green space, deer, hawks, woodchucks, and songbirds. For more information about the author and her books, go to http://www.marykaycarson.com.
Jody Casella is a former high school English teacher. Her first novel, Thin Space, a paranormal YA mystery published by Beyond Words/Simon & Schuster, received a starred review from Kirkus. She lives with her husband and two teenagers in Columbus, Ohio. In addition to writing books, she visits schools, libraries, and book clubs to talk about the creative/revision process. Visit her website at http://www.jodycasella.com.
Nancy Christie is the author of the fiction collection Traveling Left of Center and Other Stories and two short story e-books, Annabelle and Alice in Wonderland (all published by Pixel Hall Press). Her stories have also been accepted by publications such as Talking River, Bethlehem Writers Roundtable, St. Anthony Messenger, Wild Violet, EWR: Short Stories, Hypertext, Full of Crow, Fiction365, Red Fez, and The Chaffin Journal.
Her inspirational book, The Gifts Of Change (Beyond Words/Atria), encourages readers to take a closer look at how they deal with the inevitability of change and ways in which they can use change to gain a new perspective, re-evaluate their goals, and reconsider their options. Since its release in 2004, it has also been published in three foreign editions. Christie is currently working on several book projects, including a second collection, a novel, and a book for writers.
The founder of Celebrate Short Fiction Day, Christie is a member of the American Society of Journalists and Authors and Short Fiction Writers Guild (SFWG). She also hosts the monthly Monday Night Writers group in Canfield, OH. Connect with her through her website at http://www.NancyChristie.com or via Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, Pinterest, or Twitter (@NChristie_OH) or at her writing blogs: Focus on Fiction, The Writer’s Place, and One on One.
Colleen Clayton is the critically acclaimed author of the YA novel What Happens Next, which was a finalist for the Ohioana Book Award. She grew up outside of Cleveland, Ohio, and worked as a social worker in residential treatment centers for troubled teens and as Program Supervisor for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Mahoning Valley. She holds an MFA in fiction writing from the Northeast Ohio Consortium (NEOMFA) and teaches fiction writing and composition at Youngstown State University. She was recently contracted by YSU’s Special Education Department to teach an online summer writing course for 4th and 5th graders. As part of the project, she wrote eight online picture books for the students and then helped them craft their own stories using the free, educational platform Storybird. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCoQSxqNyJHkZdqzDo5QOXfg
Colleen can speak on a number of subjects, including date rape, bullying, eating disorders, feminist issues in young adult literature, and ADHD, and can lead an hour-long creative writing workshop for grades 3 through 12 as well as for adults. She has facilitated in-service workshops for librarians and teachers as well.
In-Service Testimonial from Jennifer Holt, Librarian at Willoughby South High School:
“Colleen’s story starting exercise was fun and inspiring! It fostered creative interplay between my original ideas and the surprising places my colleagues took them.”
For more on Colleen, go to her website at colleenclayton.com.
Doug Coates resides in Hamilton, Ohio, hometown of the late Cincinnati Reds’ pitcher Joe Nuxhall. Coates has coached little league baseball, girls’ softball, and girls’ high school fast-pitch softball for more than twenty years. Sports and staying active are priorities for him; he still plays men’s softball once a week in the summer. In addition to writing children’s books, Coates writes grants for non-profit organizations and volunteers as Treasurer for the Joe Nuxhall Miracle League Fields in Fairfield, Ohio. For more information, check out his website at authordougcoates.com.
Michael C. DeAloia
Michael is currently the tech columnist for the Plain Dealer and Chief Evangelist of Designing Interactive. He is perhaps best known for his term at the City of Cleveland as the Senior Executive for Technology Development, or “Tech Czar,” where he was responsible for the economic development of the technology industries in the City. He is the author of Lost Cleveland, which was published by History Press in late 2010. His third history book, also published by History Press, Lost Grand Hotels of Cleveland, was published in September 2014. Michael earned his MBA from Case Western Reserve University and his Bachelor’s degree from Xavier University. He currently lives in Lakewood, OH with his wife and their baby daughter. Visit him at techczarnotes.tumblr.com.
Darren C. Demaree is the author of As We Refer to Our Bodies, Temporary Champions , The Pony Governor, and Not For Art Nor Prayer. He is the Managing Editor of the Best of the Net Anthology. He is currently living in Columbus, Ohio with his wife and children. Visit him online at http://darrencdemaree.com.
Julie Drew is an Ohio-based writer and English professor who has published seven books, multiple academic and national media articles, as well as new fiction reviews. In addition to teaching creative writing at the graduate and undergraduate levels, she has offered writing workshops in the Midwest and New England.
Julie earned a BA in Creative Writing, MA in English literature, and PhD in Rhetoric and Writing from the University of South Florida. She is currently a Professor of English at The University of Akron where she teaches creative writing, cultural studies, and women & film.
Her most recent work, The Tesla Effect trilogy, is a young adult series comprised of Glimpse (2014), Run (2014), and Breathe (June 2015). The first two books in the trilogy were included on Ohio.com’s list of Memorable Books of 2014.
Julie’s novels have been reviewed in Publishers Weekly, Library Journal (her novel Daughter of Providence received a coveted Red Star Review), Kirkus, Booklist, Historical Novels Review (where Daughter of Providence received an Editor’s Choice designation), Cleveland Plain Dealer, Providence Journal, and Akron Beacon Journal.
Having grown up in Florida and then lived in Ohio for more than a decade, Julie and her husband now happily spend part of every year near the ocean in Rhode Island. She loves dogs, loves to travel and hike, is an amateur foodie and unabashed TV enthusiast, and enjoys outdoorsy volunteer work in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. Visit her at http://www.juliedrew.com.
R.C. Durkee is both a writer and an artist who blends her love of history, nature and the rural life into her creative projects. The sixth generation to have lived on the family’s 182 year old farm, she has raised horses, sheep, cows and crops. She is also an avid gardener.
An award winning artist, her artwork has appeared on magazine covers, in art books and in art galleries in Ohio and beyond. She has written and published short stories and essays for over twenty-five years, and her debut novel, published in 2014, is the historical fiction, RUM RUN set during 1920’s Prohibition. It has received many rave reviews including Midwest Book Review, the Historical Novel Society and the Great Lakes Historical Society. She painted the book’s dramatic cover design at the suggestion of her publisher.
RUM RUN was selected to participate in the 2015 Ohioana Book Festival in Columbus, Ohio where she participated in a panel discussion on historical fiction and attended a reception at the governor’s residence. She has done many programs on her novel and Lake Erie Prohibition history at libraries, societies and continuing education courses as well as book and writing club talks.
Her interests are historical places and buildings, classics cars, hiking and biking and star- gazing. She particularly enjoys studying 17th though early 20th Century American history and visiting related sites with her husband who shares her interest in the the Civil War. For more information about Durkee, go to her website at rcdurkee.com.
Mary Ellis has written numerous award-winning novels set in the Amish community and several historical romances set during the Civil War. Midnight on the Mississippi, part of the mystery series, Secrets of the South, is set in New Orleans and What Happened on Beale Street is set in Memphis. Before “retiring” to write full-time, Mary taught school and worked as a sales rep for Hershey Chocolate, a job with amazingly sweet fringe benefits. Mary enjoys traveling, gardening, bicycling, and swimming and lives in Ohio with her husband, dog, and cat. She can be found on the web at http://www.maryellis.net.