Carla E. Anderton is Secretary of the Board of Directors for Mon Valley Academy for the Arts. She is also a professor of English and communications at Westmoreland County Community College and Seton Hill University. She holds a Master‘s in Fine Arts from Seton Hill University and an undergraduate degree in English from California University of Pennsylvania. Carla is the author of The Heart Absent, a fictional take on Jack the Ripper, and is an internationally recognized expert on the Jack the Ripper murders. Born and raised in Memphis, TN, Carla currently lives in Daisytown, PA. Visit her website at carlaanderton.com.
Michael Arnzen (Ph.D., U Oregon) is Professor of English and the Assistant Director of Writing Popular Fiction at Seton Hill University. Known primarily for his focus on the horror genre, his film criticism has appeared in numerous journals (including The Journal of Popular Film and Television, Narrative, Paradoxa, and Jump Cut), and such academic books as The Exorcist: Studies in The Horror Film and The Films of Stephen King. As a creative writer, to date he holds four Bram Stoker Awards for his novels, short fiction and poetry, which includes such titles as Proverbs for Monsters, 100 Jolts and Grave Markings. His courses in the English program at SHU run the gamut from expository and creative writing to literary criticism and film history. He has mentored novelists and led graduate writing workshops in SHU’s unique MFA program in Writing Popular Fiction since 1999. He served as Humanities Division Chair from 2009-2015 and is currently advising the student staff of the campus literary/art magazine, Eye Contact.
Shelley Adina Senft Bates is the author of more than 55 novels published by Harlequin, Warner, Hachette, and Moonshell Books, Inc., her own independent press. She writes steampunk adventure and mystery as Shelley Adina; as Charlotte Henry, writes classic Regency romance; and as Adina Senft, is the USA Today bestselling author of Amish women’s fiction. She holds a PhD in Creative Writing from Lancaster University in the UK, appeared in the 2016 documentary film Love Between the Covers, and is a popular speaker and convention panelist. When she’s not writing, Shelley is usually quilting, sewing historical costumes, or enjoying the garden with her flock of rescued chickens.
Katie Bennett, also known as K.M. Bennett, writes science fiction, fantasy, and horror for adults. Her work has been featured in several anthologies and in multiple podcasts, including the NoSleep Podcast, the Manawaker Studio’s Flash Fiction Podcast, and the Nighty Night with Rabia Chaudry podcast. Learn more at ThatKatieLady.com.
Carina Bissett is a writer and poet working primarily in the fields of dark fiction and fabulism. Her work has been published in numerous journals and anthologies including Into the Forest: Tales of the Baba Yaga, Upon a Twice Time, Bitter Distillations: An Anthology of Poisonous Tales, and Arterial Bloom. Her poetry has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and the Sundress Publications Best of the Net and can be found in the HWA Poetry Showcase, Fantasy Magazine, and NonBinary Review. She is also the co-editor of the award-winning anthology Shadow Atlas: Dark Landscapes of the Americas. Carina’s debut collection Dead Girl, Driving and Other Devastations is forthcoming with Trepidatio Publishing in 2024. In addition to her own work, Carina fosters the writing of others in her generative writing workshops at The Storied Imaginarium. Over the last seven years, writers in her workshops have published in numerous magazines and anthologies including Apex, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Clarkesworld, Cosmic Horror Monthly, EscapePod, Fantasy Magazine, Interzone, Strange Horizons, and more. Links to Carina’s work can be found at http://carinabissett.com. For information on upcoming workshops (including The Season of the Whale coming in August 2023) or to read stories published by writers in The Storied Imaginarium community, visit https://thestoriedimaginarium.com/.
Sally Bosco writes young adult dark fiction. She is inexplicably drawn to the Uncanny, the shades of gray between the light and dark, the area where your mind hovers as you’re falling off to sleep. She loves writing young adult fiction because she strongly relates to teenage angst, the search for self-identity and the feelings of being an outsider. Her published novels are: The Werecat Chronicles and Death Divided. Recent publications include stories in Small Bites, Hazard Yet Forward, Cellar Door: Words of Beauty, Tales of Terror and Monstrous Feminine anthologies. She has an MFA in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University. She’d love to connect with you at: SallyBosco.com
Rocky Colavito is getting ready to saddle up and ride off into the sunset after forty some years teaching college level English classes. His next life will be taken up with writing, reading, and thinking about horror literature and film. He’s the creator of Buck Neighkyd, porn star turned occult detective, whose adventures can be tracked in the pages of Caveman Magazine and in the novel Creative Control (Caveman Adventure Library/Quest Omni Media).
Timons Esaias is a satirist, writer and poet living in Pittsburgh. He taught in Seton Hill University’s MFA in Writing Popular Fiction Program for 20 years, and his mentees havepublished more books than he can afford to buy. He now teaches freelance. His works, ranging from literary to genre, have been published in twenty-two languages. He has also been a finalist for the British Science Fiction Award, twice won the Asimov’s Readers Award, and won the Winter Anthology Contest for 2020. His story “Norbert and the System” has appeared in a textbook, and in college curricula. He was shortlisted for the 2019 Gregory O'Donoghue International Poetry Prize. In recent years, his stories have included a PSA warning about the dangers of were pandaism, a flash fiction about snuff poetry, a story with a pillow as the protagonist, andanother with Concord grape jelly packets as the antagonist.
KL is a cloud computing architect and former software developer near Seattle. She writes speculative fiction and has published short stories and poetry in horror, and romance novels.
KC Grifant is an award-winning author based in Southern California who writes internationally published horror, fantasy, science fiction and weird west stories for podcasts, anthologies and magazines. Her tales have appeared in Andromeda Spaceways Magazine, Unnerving Magazine, Cosmic Horror Monthly, Dark Matter Magazine, the British SF Association’s Fission Magazine, Tales to Terrify, the Lovecraft eZine, and many others. In addition to a Weird West novel, Melinda West: Monster Gunslinger (Brigids Gate Press, Feb 2023), she has also written for dozens of anthologies, including: Chromophobia; Musings of the Muse; Dancing in the Shadows – A Tribute to Anne Rice; Field Notes from a Nightmare; The One That Got Away; Six Guns Straight From Hell; Shadowy Natures; Beyond the Infinite – Tales from the Outer Reaches; and the Stoker-nominated Fright Mare: Women Write Horror.
JOY E. HELD, AAS, BA, MFA is an author, freelance editor, educator, Yoga Alliance Registered yoga and meditation teacher, college English professor, certified “Journal to the Self” facilitator, and workshop presenter with over 500 articles published in trade magazines, newspapers, and literary journals. She has published two historical romance novels writing as Liz Arnold. Her award-winning nonfiction book Writer Wellness: A Writer’s Path to Health and Creativity, third edition is available from Headline Books, Inc. Joy is a member of The Author’s Guild. She holds degrees in education, journalism, and an MFA in Writing Popular Fiction (2019) from Seton Hill University. She recently received the “2020 Member of the Year” award from Northeast Ohio RWA.
Michelle Renee Lane holds an MFA in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University. She writes dark speculative fiction about identity politics and women of color battling their inner demons while fighting/falling in love with monsters. Her work includes elements of fantasy, horror, romance, and erotica. Her short fiction appears in the anthologies Terror Politico: A Screaming World in Chaos, The Monstrous Feminine: Dark Tales of Dangerous Women, The Dystopian States of America, Graveyard Smash, Dead Awake, Midnight & Indigo: Twenty-Two Speculative Stories by Black Women Writers, The One That Got Away, and In Trouble, and has been featured on The Wicked Library podcast. Her Bram Stoker Award nominated debut novel, Invisible Chains (2019), is available from Haverhill House Publishing. The Spanish language translation, Cadenas Invisibles (2022), is available from Dilatando Mentes Editorial. Book one of her erotic paranormal romance series, The Courtship of Nora Fagan (2022), is available from Stardust Romance. Her nonfiction can be found at Medium, Speculative Chic, and in the Bram Stoker Award winning Writers Workshop of Horror 2 (2021). Follow Michelle’s blog, Girl Meets Monster, at michellerlane.com/.
Randee Paraskevopoulos, writing as Randee Leigh (she/her) Randee Paraskevopoulos is a freelance graphic designer and developmental editor at P15 Creative (P15 because Paraskevopoulos has 15 letters). She studied journalism at Berry College in Rome, GA, and became a copy editor. She discovered she loved the page layout part of being a copy editor. Now, 20+ years later, Randee still has a passion for graphic design, even though she can’t draw a decent looking heart. Over the years, she’s created everything from logos and business cards, up to posters and wall-sized banners, from straightforward web banners to complex, multi-page playbills and catalogs. Her specialty is static graphic design – designs that grab your attention and tell you everything you need to know without moving parts or interactive features. Graphic design and editing are her day jobs. She also writes romantic suspense under the pen name Randee Leigh (again, because Paraskevopoulos has 15 letters). She earned her MFA in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University. Her novels are still unpublished, but a few of her short stories have appeared in anthologies. Randee lives her own happily-ever-after in an idyllic suburb of DFW with her husband of 27 years. (He says he knows she loves him because she took his last name.) They have two technically adult daughters, one a very recent college grad, and the other still in college far from home. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, taking classes or watching documentaries on a variety of subjects, or watching just about any sport or Marvel movie. She often multi-tasks, doing those things while snuggling with her two chihuahua mixes, Pepper and Jane (named after Thor and Iron Man’s girlfriends).
Hiya, I’m L.J. a geeky, queer, award-winning romance author who’s looking to branch out under a new pen name into MG. My previous writing credits include over a dozen romance novels/novellas through Evernight Publishing (nominated for two reader’s choice awards). I graduated SHU in 2018, have given public readings at NYC’s Red Room and Jersey City’s Writer’s Space, and write a monthly short story for an e-zine called Dharma Direction. In 2019, I won an honorable mention in Writer’s Digest’s Popular Fiction Award (horror category); in 2022, I took third place in Writer’s Digest’s Short Fiction Award (for a fantasy piece).
Sherry is an award winning author and novel writing coach. A graduate of Seton Hill University’s Writing Popular Fiction program (Class of 2009), her first novel won the Writer’s Digest Self-published Ebook Award. As a novel writing coach, she uses her training as a life coach and experiences with writers block to work with writers around the world to write the stories they want to write so they can grow their readership and level up their publishing game without self-doubt, guilt, or imposter syndrome.
Donna J. W. Munro teaches high schoolers the slippery truths of government and history at her day job. Her students are her greatest inspiration. She lives with five cats, a fur covered husband, and an encyclopedia son. Her daughter is off saving the world. Writing is Donna’s painful passion. Her pieces are published in Corvid Queen, Enter the Apocalypse (2017), Beautiful Lies, Painful Truths II (2018), It Calls from the Forest (2020), Pseudopod 752 (2021), and many more. Check out her novel series Poppet Cycle (Revelation and Runaway), and her website for a complete list of works at https://www.donnajwmunro.com/.
Demi Michelle Schwartz is an author from Pittsburgh, PA. She writes young adult fiction and enjoys the mystery, thriller, and fantasy genres. Reading and writing have always been passions of hers, so it’s no surprise she has stepped into the shoes of an author herself. She’s currently seeking literary representation and hopes to find the right agent to champion her stories. Demi earned BAs in Creative Writing and Music from Seton Hill University in Greensburg, PA. With encouragement from her undergraduate English professors, she went on to pursue her MFA in Writing Popular Fiction at Seton Hill and graduated with her degree in June of 2022. When Demi isn’t working on her manuscripts and finding ways to further her involvement in the publishing industry, she’s busy chasing her other dream as an award-nominated songwriter and recording artist. Whether Demi is writing a full-length novel or crafting her next song, she always aims to inspire and encourage others to shoot for the stars.
Deanna Sjolander graduated in 2004 with a Master’s in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University and has been writing and editing since. She is an active (and past) committee member for several Science-fiction/Fantasy conventions including the World Fantasy Convention programming chair (2018, 2021), Worldcon as Director of the Retrospective Hugo Ceremony (2018/1943, 2016/1941), Capricon Programming (2017-2020) and Fundraising Chair and Committee Chair/lead for In Your Write Mind Workshop (2009-2020). Her first novel Sophie and the G-man released in 2020 and her follow-up to her debut will release early next year. Deanna is currently the Senior Editor for Rook Creek Books and the founder and CEO of Creative Pathworks.
Douglas Gwilym has been known to compose a weird-fiction rock opera or two. His short story “Poppy’s Poppy” was a finalist for a Bram Stoker Award this year. “Year Six” is on Ellen Datlow’s recommended reading list for Best Horror 14. He edited Triangulation for four years and now co-edits The Midnight Zone—forthcoming edition, Novus Monstrum, a collection of never-before-seen monsters, featuring original stories by greats, and new voices, in strange, dark fiction. He reads classics of the proto-Weird on YouTube and has been guest staff at Alpha Young Writers workshop. His short fiction appears in LampLight, Lucent Dreaming, Novel Noctule, Shelter of Daylight, Dark Horses: A Magazine of Weird Fiction, Tales from the Moonlit Path, Penumbric, and Tales to Terrify.
Gail Carriger writes books that are hugs, mostly comedies of manners mixed with steampunk, urban fantasy, and sci-fi (plus cozy queer joy as G. L. Carriger). These include the Parasol Protectorate, Custard Protocol, Tinkered Stars, and San Andreas Shifter series for adults, and the Finishing School and Tinkered Starsong series for young adults. Also nonfiction: The Heroine’s Journey. She is published in many languages, has over a million books in print, over a dozen New York Times and USA Today bestsellers, and starred reviews in Publishers Weekly, Booklist, Kirkus, and Romantic Times. Her first book, Soulless, made Audible’s Best list, was a Publishers Weekly Best Book, an IndieBound Notable, and a Locus Recommended Read. She has received the American Library Association’s Alex Award, the Prix Julia Verlanger, the Elbakin Award, the Steampunk Chronicle‘s Reader’s Choice Award, and a Starburner Award. She was once an archaeologist and is fond of shoes, cephalopods, and tea. Get early access, specials, and exclusives via her website gailcarriger.com
Beth Mashae: Ladderbird Agency Beth is the owner of Ladderbird Literary Agency. She has a BA in Literature and a Masters in Business Administration and is always looking for new and exciting ways to bring more diversity into publishing and beyond. Outside of agenting, Beth teaches writing in her local community with a focus on bringing reluctant writers and readers into the magical world of books. She relentlessly searches for more ways to encourage writers to create stories that matter! Outside of books, she loves the outdoors, all things water related, and has a strong attraction to abstract art. Beth is interested in Fantasy: Open to all/most Subgenres, including: Dark Fantasy; Mystery/Crime: Open to all/most Subgenres, including: Cozy.; Romance: Open to all/most Subgenres.; Science Fiction: Open to all/most Subgenres; Suspense/Thriller: Open to all/most Subgenres.
Becky LeJuene: Bond Literary Agency Becky LeJeune met Sandra at the Denver Publishing Institute when she was a student there in 2007. After DPI, she spent 2 years working as the managing editor for a cookbook imprint, and then 5 years as an acquisitions editor at The History Press before joining Sandra at BLA in 2014. She is interested in adult and teen general fiction, horror, mystery/thriller, historical fiction, science fiction and fantasy, and cookbooks.
Zoe Aline Howard: Howland Literary Zoe is interested in literary fiction with speculative elements, especially those that tend dark and underground (Sharks in the Time of Saviors); joyous girlhood; body horror & transformations of the body; and insular settings (small towns, amusement parks, summer camps, hotels). In adult nonfiction, Zoe is looking for narrative nonfiction, memoir, and essay collections that blend personal narratives with research or questions about the larger world. She would love to see more nonfiction that reads like fiction. Her niche interests include material culture, why & how we use objects, celebrities, pop culture, parasocial relationships, and the connections between people and the places they inhabit.