Registration for the 5th annual Payson Book Festival will open January 2019. Check back then.


*Patricia Brooks: Patricia Brooks is an award-winning author, speaker, consultant and advocate. She is founder and president of Brooks Goldmann Publishing Company, LLC. Her mission is to enhance the author’s journey. She also created the Scottsdale Society of Women Writers in 2005 and serves as president.

Her first memoir, Gifts of Sisterhood – Journey from Grief to Gratitude. earned a prestigious AZ Authors Association Literary Contest Non-fiction award. Her second memoir, Three Husbands and a Thousand Boyfriends, addresses love addiction, domestic violence and post-traumatic stress. Her third memoir, just released, honors her 35 years in recovery and her spiritual transformation.

Learn more at

*Dee “Buckshot Dot” Strickland Johnson: Native Arizonan “Buckshot Dot,” grew up on the Hualapai Reservation and the Petrified Forest. She and her husband, Ol” Buck, operated a cattle ranch in the Ozark Mountains throughout the 1970’s.

Dot is an Arizona Culture Keeper and has opened for Lyle Lovett. She has been awarded the Academy of Western Artists Female Cowboy Poet of the Year. One of her books was named Cowboy Poetry Book of the Year, and she has received the Will Rogers Medallion Award. She has written seven books, five dance folk operas, and has produced four CD’s. She and Buck live in Payson, Arizona.

You can find “Buckshot Dot” at:

*JL Doty: Jim is a full-time SF&F writer, scientist (Ph.D. EE), and former running-dog-lackey for the bourgeois capitalist establishment. His first success as a writer came through self-publishing. That led to traditional contracts with publishers like Harper Collins. His tenth novel, the third in his urban fantasy series, The Dead Among Us, was released in February 2017. Right now he’s submitting his eleventh novel, The Witch of Val d’Ossa, to publishers, and he’s just finished his twelfth, A Hymn for the Dying, the first in a new SF series, The Blacksword Regiment. Science is a passion, but writing is an addiction.

Learn more at

*Tom Morrissey: Tom Morrissey is a retired Chief Deputy US Marshal, martial artist, veteran of the US Army, former member of two hit rock groups and a song writer for Ray Charles and Richie Havens. He was born and raised in Brooklyn NY, to a blue collar family, in a culturally diverse neighborhood. An animated film based on Tom’s children’s book is in the pre-production stage. He is co-writing an action thriller series with actor/martial artist Steven Seagal. He loves to tell a good story about his dream of the return of this country’s founding principles, with power back to the people.

Follow him on Facebook.

*Janette Rallison: USA Today, bestselling author, Janette Rallison/ CJ Hill writes books because writing is much more fun than cleaning bathrooms. Her avoidance of housework has led her to writing 27 novels that have sold over 1,000,000 print copies and have been on many reading and state lists. Her books are fantasy, sci-fi, and romantic comedy because hey, there is enough angst in real life, but there’s a drastic shortage of humor, romance and hot guys who fight dragons. She lives in Chandler, Arizona with her husband, kids, and enough cats to classify her as eccentric.

Learn more at Follow her on Facebook

*Liz Warren: Liz Warren, a fourth-generation Arizonan, is the director and one of the founders of the South Mountain Community College Storytelling Institute in Phoenix, Arizona. Her textbook, The Oral Tradition Today: An Introduction to the Art of Storytelling is used at colleges around the nation. Her recorded version of The Story of the Grail received a Parents’ Choice Recommended Award and a Storytelling World Award. She serves as storytelling coach for Gannett’s nationwide Storytellers Project. The Arizona Humanities Council recently awarded her the Dan Schilling Award as the 2018 Humanities Public Scholar.

Like her on Facebook.

Authors (listed alphabetically)

*Tom Alberti: Tom Alberti is a forty-six-year resident of Arizona. Tom and his wife, Dru, live on a horse property in Queen Creek, and enjoy riding their horses all over Arizona. Many of the riding adventures described in his books are the based on his own experiences throughout the state.

His first novel, The Horseman, has been followed by three more Horseman stories. This four-book series is based on the adventures of Tom and Dominique Blandini, a Tucson cattle family. Tom has also written two independent novels, and a book of western short stories.

Find out more at

* Susan Anderson: Susan Clare Anderson has an Associate Teacher Certificate and 29 units in Child Development including two practicum courses. She also has a skill certificate in School-age Programs and one in Preschool. She has experience working with children as well and strives to create books that are age-appropriate and fun to read. In her books, she offers opportunities for children to sharpen their developmental skills along with colorful pictures and interesting characters in order to capture their imagination.

Find out more at

*Bonnie Bahn: Animals, birds, and disabled children prompted Bonnie to write the Applevale Holidays series of books. Her goal is to encourage disabled children to think of themselves as heroes. There are four books: Christmas Alligator, Raccoon Rainbow, Moon Balls and Saving Yankee and Doodle. The most recent one, Saving Yankee and Doodle, features a family of golden eagles.

Her first book, Bumblefoot, Murder is For the Birds, is about a trio of teenage sleuths who enlist the help of a telepathic screech to solve a murder. Works in progress include a middle grade story and a historical fiction.

See more at

*Sue Bee Balentine: Sue Lynn Balentine was born in Lubbock Texas and raised in California. She earned her bachelor’s degree in social work at CSU Sacramento. While Susan has devoted much of her life to human equality and social justice, she now has passion for animal advocacy and rescue. Susan’s inspiration to write children’s books came from reading to her own children before bedtime. She has a gypsy soul and free spirit.

Follow her at Facebook.

 *Patricia Batta: Pat K. Batta was born in Kalamazoo, Michigan and grew up in Northern Michigan. She attended Northwestern Michigan Community College, received her BA from the University of Puerto Rico, and a Masters in Teaching from Oberlin College in Ohio. She married and moved to Philadelphia, and later to Seattle, Washington, where the Marge Christensen Mystery Series was born. She moved back to West Chester, Pennsylvania, and then returned to Michigan before settling in Prescott, Arizona, where she is currently starting a spin off series (Marge refused to move).

You can find Patricia at:

Amy Benicki: Amy J. Benicki received a Journalism degree from Arizona State University, as well as a Master’s degree in Elementary Education from the University of Phoenix. She is currently an elementary school teacher in Surprise, AZ, and launched her career as a children’s author in 2016.
Ooboo and friends: The Magical Rocketship, was her big debut. An impromptu idea quickly transformed into her first children’s book. Her second book in the series, Ooboo and friends: The Penguin Parade, was released in October 2016. Where will the lovable characters’ venture to next? Her third book will be released later this fall.

See more at

*Ken Blaisdell: Ken Blaisdell began his writing career in 2001, with the political thriller, The Weaver Conspiracy. He has since completed eight others. To enhance his intricately crafted plots, Ken uses dialogue extensively to develop both his characters and the story, in the true “show me; don’t tell me” style, that allows his readers to feel themselves right in the middle of the scenes. In all of his fiction, he is fanatical about accuracy, often spending hours researching even minute details so that the spell of the story is never broken by the reader saying, “Wait a minute; that’s not right!”


*Timothy Boyer: Timothy J. Boyer was born in Allegan, Michigan. He now lives in Phoenix Arizona with his wife, Elizabeth Ajamie-Boyer. He has been telling stories his whole life, but writing since he was 17 years old. He began seriously writing his Mirror Gate Chronicles in 2005 when he began telling his friends at work about his dreams. They encouraged him, and along with his wife’s prompting, TJ Boyer has completed eight stories of the series. Mirror Gate Chronicles is Science Fantasy, however TJ writes action and mystery stories, as well.

Find out more about the series at

*Susan Budavari: Susan Budavari has always been an avid mystery reader. After years as a scientific writer and information specialist in the pharmaceutical industry, she moved from New Jersey to Arizona and turned to writing fiction. Many of her short stories have appeared in award-winning anthologies. She writes the Merano & Bell Novel series featuring an Arizona private investigator (and ex-NJ cop) and his physician wife. Chain of Lies is the latest volume in the series. She serves on the board of directors of Sisters in Crime Desert Sleuths Chapter.

Find out more at

James Bultema: Historian James Bultema knows police history. He is the author of the acclaimed book Guardians of Angels: A History of the Los Angeles Police Department and now, The Protectors, each of which tell a story with the use of spectacular photographs. Beginning in the 1970s, Bultema amassed one of the largest collections of photographs of General and President, Ulysses S. Grant. This interest lent itself to collecting and researching photographs of police officers. In compiling over 300 images for The Protectors, Bultema traveled to archives, libraries, museums and private collections, and utilized the internet, to view thousands upon thousands of images, all in an effort to find the exact photographs needed to convey the history of The Protectors. Bultema is retired from the Los Angeles Police Department and lives in Northern Arizona with his wife of 44 years.

To find out more, see and

*Caren Cantrell: Caren is the author of Fine-ly Fabulous – A Survival Guide for the Fine-Haired Girl, Maximize Your Golf Swing – A Golf Exercise Plan for Hitting Longer and Straighter Every Time, two children’s picture books: Annie Argyle’s Amazing Adventure and The Sweet Dream Fairy and a storyboard journal for picture book writers, Picture Book Storyboards. She also writes a series of eBooks called Planet Discovery Books for Kids under the pen name Matthew Taylor. She, her husband Bill, and their two dogs live in Scottsdale, AZ. When she’s not writing, or helping others to get published, you can find her traveling the country to see her five grandchildren.

Visit Caren at or at Facebook.

*Nan C Cataldi: Nan C. Cataldi was born and raised in a small town in western Pennsylvania. After raising her two children in Richmond, Virginia, she decided to move out to the Old West. She is currently retired from the medical profession and lives in Arizona. Nan has taken several children’s writing classes. She has received a 5-Star Review from Readers’ Favorite Reviews for both of her books, Rafie the Rattlesnake, Come Home! and The Lost Key of Being. Nan recently released her newest book, The Hidden Portal to Wren. the second in the Keys of Being children’s fantasy trilogy.

If you’d like to know more, go to

*Jan Cleere: Author, historian, and lecturer Jan Cleere writes extensively about the people who first settled in the desert Southwest. As the author of five award-winning historical biographical books, she travels around the state presenting the stories of early pioneers who were instrumental in settling and civilizing the Territory of Arizona. Jan is also a Roads Scholar with Arizona Humanities. Her column, “Western Women,” appears monthly in Tucson’s Arizona Daily Star newspaper detailing the lives of Arizona’s early amazing women. A magna cum laude graduate of ASU West, her freelance work appears in national and regional publications.

Find out more at

*Connie Cockrell: Connie Cockrell began writing in response to a challenge from her daughter in October 2011 and has been hooked ever since. She writes about whatever comes into her head so her books could be in any genre. She’s published fifteen books so far, has been included in six different anthologies and been published on Connie’s always on the lookout for a good story idea. Beware, you may be the next one.

If you’d like to know more, go to or to

*Stephanie Cress: Stephanie has lived in a fantasy world for as long as she can remember. From an early age, she told herself stories to help herself sleep and keep herself entertained on long rides across the country (as an Army brat, those happened a lot). In 2001, she received her bachelor’s degree in geology, but it wasn’t until the 2007 NaNoWriMo challenge that she put those skills together to create the people and the landscape of Gilded Shadows. It is now the first of a five-book series.

Find out more at Follow her on Facebook.

Deborah Cunningham: Too many years ago (to note here), Deborah Cunningham was born in Baltimore, Maryland.  It was later in life that Deborah realized, while most days can appear uneventful, they can quickly ignite with significance, connection taglines, inspiration or just plain funny stuff.  Writing peanut-sized stories and poems about such infused moments to encourage, inspire and offer insight became her passion.  Her other interests include art (in particular, oil painting), singing, guitar and cooking/baking.  She has won a number of cooking contests, including one for her prize-winning chili.

*Erin Danko: Erin has a degree in Early Education and has been teaching for over six years. She currently resides in Southern Arizona with her husband and their five cats. She has been a fan of mysteries ever since watching Scooby-Doo, Where Are You?. She always enjoyed trying to figure out who did it before Velma could. She began writing her Stormy Summers mysteries series when her students revealed they didn’t like reading because they couldn’t connect to the characters. She created Stormy to help get her students interested in reading.

Find out more at her website.

*Marc David: Marc David is a veteran journalist whose writing career spans four decades, during which time he has covered the sports spectrum from world boxing champions to the Olympics. He has written for lifestyle and health magazines.A native of Allentown, Pennsylvania, Marc now resides in Chandler, Arizona, where he writes books, contributes articles to newspapers, and is available for speaking engagements. Marc is an everyday runner who enjoys travel.

He has written three nonfiction books: The Addicted Runner, Available Male Tale, and 1,001 Things You Didn’t Want to Know.

You can find out more at

Chrisann Dawson:  Chrisann Dawson, who was raised in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, has experienced a life of travel and missionary adventure. She successfully published her first book, Congo Crisis, early September 2015. Chrisann then finished teaching another year of high school English in her small town in Arizona. She looks forward to spending more time studying, researching, and writing.

Chrisann and her husband, Gale, are currently pumping fresh vision into their national-led Congo ministry, called Rise Congo. Chrisann believes regular contact with the Congo and its incredible people will bolster her goals to write more Congo-themed stories. Follow her at Facebook.

Alan Day: Alan Day was part of the third generation to grow up on the 200,000-acre Lazy B cattle ranch straddling the high deserts of southern Arizona and New Mexico. The ranching and cowboy lifestyle appealed to him so greatly that after graduating from the University of Arizona, he returned to manage Lazy B for the next 40 years. Alan and his sister Sandra Day O’Connor co-authored the New York Times bestselling memoir, Lazy B. His new book, Cowboy Up: Life Lessons from Lazy B, Alan shares stories about ranching and cowboying and the lessons he learned along the way.

Find out more at  Follow him on Facebook.

*Sharon Day: Sharon Day is a paranormal researcher and popular blogger (Ghost Hunting Theories). Born and raised in a Civil War hospital estate, she was exposed to the unexplained on a daily basis. In the past decade, Sharon has secured peer respect for her research and publications, as well as ignited passion for the subjects with her public speaking. Being able to glean from real-life unexplained situations, her work possesses a level of authenticity to produce the proper amount of chills and thrills. Sharon is also in pre-production of a feature film based on her work and is listed in IMDB.

Learn more at her blog.

*Keri De Deo: Keri De Deo, owner of Witty Owl Consulting, lives in northern Arizona and works as a writer, editor, researcher, and instructional designer. She is author of the young adult novel, Nothing but a Song, released in December 2017. She loves technology and finding innovative tools for a happy, healthy life. Keri spends her free time with her husband kayaking, hiking, and walking her two beautiful dogs, Maiya and Lilla.

To learn more about Keri, visit her website or follow her on Facebook.

Richard Draude: Richard R. Draude, an East Coast baby boomer, found reading and early TV shows great ways to pass the time as a young boy in New Jersey. From the Hardy Boys to more serious mysteries and thrillers, he loved the excitement and adventure of the written word. Inheriting a love of old movies from his parents, he enjoys a wide range of TV and movie genres, and loves quoting lines and scenes from his favorite films. Richard has two of his five book series, The MacKenna Saga, published under NewLink Publishing. He took time out to author a romance novel, Almost A Whisper, debuting in July

Learn more at

*Pam Eaton: Pam lives in the deserts of Arizona, but she’ll always consider herself a New Englander at heart. She graduated from Arizona State University with degrees involving education and history. While she loves history, it’ll always take a backseat to the fictional world she stumbled into as a young girl. She lives with her husband, three kids, and two crazy but lovable Labs. It’s a chaotic life, but she wouldn’t have it any other way. Especially since they let her read an insane amount of books and watch way too many Food Network shows.

Find out more at Follow her on Facebook.

*Sherry E. Engler:  Engler, a member of the Raconteurs of Payson, writes articles for Get Your Mountain On Arizona. Inspired by her passion for writing, she wrote Living with LEO: Law Enforcement Officer sharing light-hearted observations of family life with LEO’s. Daisy Doo! Daisy Doo? What? Who? is a delightful fable, written and illustrated by Sherry for preschool age, promoting self-esteem and self-reliance as a green caterpillar, Daisy Doo, searches for her identity. Her latest release, Holden’s Magical Blue Marble, is a chapter book for children and teens who like magical mysteries.

See or to

*Annemarie Eveland: Annemarie Eveland is author of First Glance, What Faces Reveal; Be the Ripple; and Real Women Don’t Wear Glass Slippers and a frequent writer of newspaper articles. Annemarie, as “StoryLady,” also shares on CDs her uplifting and humorous stories which will touch your heart.

Contact Annemarie at or subscribe to her blog.

*Sandra Fendler: Following her love of adventure, Sandra traveled internationally as a flight attendant. She has been an Arizonan resident for forty-five years and currently resides in a small community where she enjoys nature, animals, and an outdoor lifestyle that inspires her writing. Curse of the Chindi, her first novel, is based on true a murder mystery set on the Navajo reservation. Second in the series is Dance of the Demon, and She-Devil Shenanigans is third in a proposed series of five novels.

*Phoebe Fox: Phoebe Fox has an M.A. in Curriculum and Instruction and a B.A. in Early Childhood Development from Barrett at Arizona State University. She has been an elementary school teacher and library media specialist, and is currently a mother of three and author of children’s books. She enjoys writing stories, collecting children’s books, and sharing both with young children! See more at

*Pat Frayne: Pat Frayne is an award-winning children’s author and the creator of the middle-grade adventure series: Topaz the Conjure Cat Books. These fast-paced mystical fantasies are written for kids who love cats, magic, and tales of high adventure. Frayne’s latest book, Topaz and the Green Fairies won Literary Classics 2016 Silver Award for Chapter Book and First Place for (Children’s) Classics in Reviewers Choice Awards for 2016/2017. The first two stories in the Topaz Series were written for Frayne’s grandchildren. Frayne admits her granddaughter, Caitlin, age nine at the time, was her biggest inspiration.

Find out more at and

*Mark Gardner: Mark Gardner is a US NAVY veteran. He lives in northern Arizona with his wife, three children and a pair of spoiled dogs. Mark holds a degree in Computer Systems and Applications, and is the Chief Operator for an Arizona radio group.

Find out more at

*Stan Garner: Stan is a founder of Short Line Enterprises. He has 51 years of experience participating in Railroad Museum restoration projects in California, Nevada and Kansas as well as economic research on tourist railroad development.

Mr. Garner was actively involved with motion picture and excursion train operations from 1976 until 1997.  He has worked as a train consultant/coordinator and actor on more than 312 film, television and still shoots in all parts of the country. He is a member of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG-Aftra) and has several screen credits

Learn more about Stan at

*Earl Goldmann: 82-year-old Earl Llewellyn Goldmann launched his first memoir last August. The author of Bounce Back is a retired social studies teacher and coach from Oregon. Initially a snowbird, he met and married Scottsdale resident and author Patricia L. Brooks. Together they started Brooks Goldmann Publishing Company, LLC and Scottsdale Society of Women Writers.

While playing basketball at Oregon State University, Goldmann was severely injured in a horrific car wreck and was forced to return to his hometown. Bounce Back is the true story of Goldmann’s survival and forgiveness to recapture his fractured future.

Contact Earl at

*Carol Hageman: Inspired by her lifelong love of wildlife and the outdoors, first-time author Carol Hageman has written a book that’s aimed for children up to and including second grade. Bubby’s Puddle Pond: A Tortuga’s Tale of the Desert is an adventure about how to get along with others while finding one’s own strengths. Currently living in Tempe, Arizona, in her free time, Hageman practices yoga and is a Master Gardener.

For more details visit with links to Facebook and Instagram or

*Jim Hagen: Jim retired from a career of engineering with Motorola, Philco-Ford and Xerox in 1963 at age 67.  He subsequently immersed himself in fine arts and creative writing. He has self-published three volumes of poetry, two volumes of short stories, a Novella, a travelogue of Ireland, a booklet of “Honor Flight Arizona”, and a 20-page epic poem based on Truman Capote’s masterpiece, In Cold Blood. For family, Memories of Marlene written after her death, and six volumes of an autobiography.

His writings, fiction and non-fiction, are all based in Arizona Rim country. Jim is a long-time resident of Christopher Creek.

*Michael Hale: Michael Hale has years of creative experience as a designer, writer and Illustrator. He was even the Creative Director at The Phoenix Zoo. Now he puts his creative skills to work to on writing & Illustrating children’s picture books. He loves his work.

Michael illustrated his first picture book, UP UP UP in 2016. It was written by Phoebe Fox and published by First Edition Project Books. Bad Monkey Business was written and Illustrated by Michael, published by Simian Books in 2017.

You can see more of Michael Hale’s work by visiting

*Susan Haught: A multi award-winning author and Australian black liquorice connoisseur, Susan Haught writes deeply emotional stories of family, friendship, and the healing power of love. She believes that “love is ageless” and has the power to change lives. Susan calls the mountains of Arizona home, and when she isn’t writing you’ll find her tending her flower garden with a notorious brown thumb or curled up with someone else’s words.

Find out more about Susan and her award-winning Whisper of the Pines series and sign up for her Love is Ageless newsletter at

*John Herrera: John spent his formative years in Yuma, AZ, completing high school at Yuma High School, and earning two years college credit at Arizona Western. He did military service in the Army. A year of his service was Vietnam, a non-combatant, and dismissed with an honorable discharge.

John and his wife, Lynn, are happily retired in Payson. They have 4 grown children. John worked as a Postal employee and Lynn as a school teacher, and they were both active in community theater. In retirement, John now works hard at fiction writing, with several works in process.

*Arlene Hittle: Arlene Hittle is a Midwestern transplant who now makes her home in northern Arizona. She suffers from the well-documented Hittle family curse of being a Cubs fan, but will root for the Diamondbacks until they run up against the Cubs. Longtime friends are amazed she writes books with sports in them, since she’s about as coordinated as a newborn giraffe and used to say marching band required more exertion than golf. Find her at or follow her on Facebook.

*Patrick Hodges: Patrick Hodges lives in his native state of Arizona with his wife, Vaneza. By day, he is a medical biller, and by night, he continues to discover new passion as a writer of Young Adult fiction.

Follow him on Facebook.

*Valerie Ipson: Valerie Ipson loves her family…and reading, writing, family history, and Hershey Milk Chocolate Almond & Toffee Nuggets. She lives in Mesa, Arizona, and Ideal High is her debut novel.

For more information, see .

*Marie Joy: Marie Joy is the author of Buddy the Soldier Bear. She has a master’s degree in Leadership from Grand Canyon University. She volunteers with the Blue Star Moms and the American Legion Auxiliary. Marie’s dad served in WWII and her oldest son served in Iraq and Afghanistan. When sending care packages to soldiers, she dreamed of writing a children’s story that could give back to our brave warriors. Through her writing, she hopes to inspire children to dream big, and to bring awareness to military and veteran causes. She donates a portion of the proceeds from her book to nonprofit organizations who support military and veteran’s causes.

See more at

Leslie Keller: Leslie Keller: Leslie Keller has used her experience in the restaurant business, and love of the Arizona desert, to create the characters for her cozy mysteries. Menu for Murder is the first book in the series and has received five star reviews on Amazon and Goodreads.  Cocktails at Sunset continues the story of Jayne Stanford the less-than-stellar server.

She spends her limited free time hiking in the desert, savoring wine volunteering for Ebeauty, helping breast cancer patients, and animal rescues. She lives in Phoenix, with her partner and their two rescue cats.

Learn more at Connect with her on Facebook.

*Barbara Lacy: In collaboration with Vernon Mayes, a range-conservation instructor at The College of Ganado (Ganado, Arizona) and the staff at the NHA, Barbara put together the plant book, NANISE’, a Navajo Herbal, a user-friendly resource book that showcases the deep understanding Navajos have of plants that grow in the harsh Southwestern region. In 1990, the book earned an honorable mention in the annual National Federation of Press Women communications contest.

Barbara was one of the authors of the recently published Skirting Traditions, Arizona Women Writers and Journalists 1912-2012 and wrote Pictures of the Navajo, Their Health and Environment in 1980.

Learn more at

*Sharon Langdale: Sharon’s novel is based on a true murder case. It takes place in a historical Colorado mining town. Living in such a town enabled her to draw characters that speak truth with boldness; a trait necessary to vanquish hard winters along with evildoers. Her twisty tale of greed, adultery, murder, and bravery is a result of her own loss of a loved one due to an unsolved murder. Her fictional story earned an Honorable Mention award from the Arizona Professional Writers Contest 2014.

Follow her on Facebook

*Rev. Joaquin Larriba: Reverend Larriba was born in Prescott, AZ, in 1967. His early life was tumultuous and bitterly embroiled with insecurities. Determined to show the world that he was capable of brave things he set his sights on the 82nd Airborne Division; his demons following close behind. Loss and failures sent him spiraling into the murky waters of alcohol and drug addictions. His life was a river of wreckage, wide and deep, meandering beneath one burned bridge after another. He thought that he would never make it, that is, until a vow set him on a collision course with The Living God.

*Nelle Lewis: Nelle Lewis is a mystery reader and writer who splits her time and love between Phoenix, Arizona and Cleveland, Ohio. A Southern California gal by birth, she discovered her deepest connections in Cleveland, and brings to life the eclectic bounty of that community in her Samantha Carter Mystery series. Her happiest moments on earth are when she hears her family laugh, and sees her readers smile.

When she’s not reading, writing, playing, and mumbling story ideas to herself in the street, Nelle can be found online at

*Nikos Ligidakis: Award-winning author, Nikos Ligidakis, writes with clarity and passion in an ardent voice, not to just recount adventures, but with an expression of feelings, to encourage the reader to think, to find hope in the eternal struggle for the meaning of life and the awareness of harmony. Today Nikos devotes his life to coaching new authors encouraging and assisting them to write and publish their books.

Nikos has founded several charitable organizations with the most notable his Thanksgiving Project to Feed the Hungry, a program that provided food to tens of thousands during its 21-year run. His selfless work with people has earned him several humanitarian awards over the years.

Follow him at Facebook

Maureen Lombardo: Maureen Lombardo is a Vice President in financial services.  She graduated with a Bachelor’s degree from Penn State in 1990 and a Master’s in Business from Keller in 1999.  Since the early 90’s, Maureen has been on a rewarding journey to marry her personal and spiritual growth with her evolving business acumen and experience in organizational behavior.  No small part of that work included a path of sobriety and serenity that began in 2009.

*Ed Loughlin: Ed Loughlin is a retired faculty member from Chandler-Gilbert Community College in Arizona where he worked as a Counselor, Advisement Coordinator and Health Instructor. Ed attended Northern Arizona University (NAU) where he received his undergraduate, graduate and nursing degrees. He has worked as a psychiatric nurse and taught both elementary and junior high school. Ed was also a radio announcer and loves to chat about music from the 1960s, ‘70s and ‘80s.

Find out more at

*Betsy Love: Betsy Love is a fun, spunky grammie from Mesa, Arizona who loves writing quirky sci-fi romances. She’s been creating stories since she could hold a pencil. In high school her English teacher told her one day she’d be published. Love proved her correct and now has six published titles and plans to release three more books in her StarBride Chronicles series and a Christmas novel in 2018.

You can find her online at

*Bill Lynam: Bill is a teacher and author of central Arizona histories for a local newspaper, and fiction and non-fiction articles for various magazines. His Steampunk Mashup, a collection of science fiction short stories was published in 2017. He co-authored Footloose Pilgrims, a coming of age travelogue about hitch-hiking, bicycling, and mopeding in Europe with further travels in North Africa, South and Central Americas published in 2014. He recently authored Bernie, The Flying Squirrel and edited his grandmother’s children’s book, Lucky Foxes.

Find out more at

*Wendy Lynn: Wendy Lynn was born in New Orleans, Louisiana. At the age of 40, Wendy graduated Summa Cum Laude, from the University of New Orleans with degrees in Psychology and Philosophy. In the fall of 2008, she also received her Professional Empowerment Life Coaching Certification.Wendy Lynn uses her education, life-coaching skills, writing, and workshops to empower and encourage others. She is the author of the Truth And Dare Empowerment Coaching Curriculum for Teens and The Undivided Self. Wendy Lynn specializes in coaching focused on Self-Worth, Personality Potentials, Positive Thought Processing, Emotional and Mental Stability, Powerful Parenting, and Empowering Relationships.

Find out more at

*Barbara Marriott: Thirteen books ago Barbara Marriott arrived in Arizona looked around and said “What’s a girl from Jersey doing in this place?” Then she set about finding out what this place was all about, or rather what it is and perhaps what it will be.  History is a great guide. Poking around in history-produced books on the Old Southwest including In Our Own Words and Two Six Shooters Beat Four Aces, WPA interviews with Arizona Pioneer men and women who arrived in the Territory between 1850 and 1910 – that’s history that spoke to Marriott. In Paint ‘N Spurs she hears the voices of five men who in 1965 changed the Western art scene and the way the Old West was perceived.  Now that’s history that is easy on the eyes and mind.

Learn more at

*Jan M. Martin: Jan would rather write than eat or sleep, which is handy for authors—not so much for husbands. Favorite writing moment: meeting famous moonshiner Popcorn Sutton during research for Heir of Deceit. She has won national contests for her comedic poetry on subjects such as Black Friday, Eskimo Pies, and her messy kitchen. She wrote for a local newspaper at age 11, and worked for her high school and college journalism departments. She is the author of novels Heir of Deceit and Impressions of Innocence; My Word, That’s Absurd! (Humor); and Maintaining a Youthful Appearance (in progress).

See more at her website:

Visit her website.

*Carole Emma Mathewson: California native Carole Emma Mathewson has resided in Payson, Arizona since 1992. Having majored in English and Early Childhood Education, she has been a preschool teacher and a secretary—executive and legal. She was a newspaper reporter/copy editor for 10 years.

Mathewson is the author of: California native Carole Emma Mathewson has resided in Payson, Arizona since 1992., published in December 2014; and The Hostess of Providence: A One-woman, One-act Play, presented by Mathewson on stage in 1985 and published in 2011. Both are available online at her Author Page on Amazon. Mathewson has three additional books in progress.

*Merle McCann: Novelist, Merle McCann is known for her national literature award-winning Longjohners Mystery Series for middle readers. Many of her short stories have appeared in award-winning anthologies. McCann’s work won best in all genres at Louisiana’s Dixie Kane Memorial National Literature contest. Born in the Yukon, raised in Seattle, she has traveled the United States and Europe with her husband, pursuing their Arabian horse business. She has also worked as a paralegal, banker, event planner, and scenic photographer. She lives in Scottsdale, Arizona.

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Ruth McLeod: Volunteers of the 501(c)3 Historical League, Leslie Christiansen, Linda Corderman, Ruth McLeod, Cathy Shumard and a large committee worked for over two years to research and write stories, test and re-test recipes. They also published award-winning Tastes & Treasures I in 2007. Out of 20,000 copies printed, we only have 350 left.

The hard-cover, full-color books are filled with Arizona history, food memories, storytelling and favorite recipes.

Funds raised help underwrite important educational programs, exhibits and capital improvements at the AZ Heritage Center at Papago Park, Tempe, AZ.

Tastes & Treasures is a colorful souvenir that is part history book, part cookbook and all Arizona.

More info at

*Sandra Miller: Sandra Miller is a retired family physician in Phoenix who has always been a writer in her secret heart. Very little fiction has been written about women physicians — and not much fiction is placed at the Grand Canyon, either. It’s a great challenge to show the struggles and triumphs of day-to-day medicine in an entertaining and informative way and to show the human side and create an adventurous story. When not writing, you might find Sandra on a horse, hiking with a dog, or exploring her latest hobby, volcanology.

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Dave Munsey: Legendary weatherman for Channel 10 in Phoenix for over forty years, Emmy Award winner and Hall of Fame Journalist Dave retired in 2017. He is the founder of the water safety program, “Watch Your Kids Around Water,” and wrote a recently-released autobiography, Munsey Business.

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*Debi Novotny: Debi Novotny is throwing her magic hat into the ring of children’s literature with her debut series, My Magic Hat Rules! Debi holds a Master’s Degree in Curriculum Development and has a passion for putting books in the hands of children. Debi writes stories that blend technical learning with vibrant color and engaging characters. Her inspiration is drawn from twenty years of teaching early childhood education in the classroom. Debi is an author, educator, and children’s art teacher.

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*Christoff Orr: Christoff, was born in Bitburg, Germany, and found his love and passion of history early in life through the influence of his father, a US Air Force NCO. Christoff graduated from Arizona State University with Honors, Summa Cum Laude, with a degree in Business, Economics and US History. Christoff’s love of writing and storytelling began at a young age and is still present today. Christoff’s stories will make you think as well as entertain. His stories are described as non-stop action, and are enjoyed by men, women and teenagers.

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*Tony Padegimas: Tony is, among many other things, a freelance writer based in Phoenix. He chronicles sports, fitness, historical curiosities, technical theatre (his day job), the inside guts of buildings and other topics by assignment for a variety of publications. His two published hiking guides have made him the second-most famous Padegimas on the internet.

Find out more at his blog.

*Kathy Peach: At a time of life when most people begin to slow down, Kathy Peach decided to head for the Southwest to live near family after being in Tennessee her entire life. She followed her dream of earning a college degree and writing a children’s book. Peach graduated from Arizona State University in December 2014, with a degree in Early Childhood/Early Childhood Special Education. The Tiniest Tumbleweed, gives readers the message that they can believe in a life filled with limitless possibilities. The Tiniest Tumbleweed, Peach’s first book, is not only a delight, but an inspiration.Find out more at and on Facebook.

*Amber Polo: Amber Polo’s fascination with lost ancient libraries and curiosity about why werewolves outnumbered dogs in literature inspired her urban fantasy series The Shapeshifters’ Library.

Love Arizona? Hearts in the Vortex and Heads in the Clouds explore romance in Sedona and the Verde Valley. Amber’s Relaxing the Writer offers stressed readers suggestions and simple exercises. Her CDs help almost anyone relax and contain the “Prelude to Sleep” track that has helped over 8,000 people find restful sleep listening to her voice on their Insight Timer app.

Visit Amber at

*Linda F. Radke: Linda F. Radke is president of Story Monsters LLC and publisher of Story Monsters Ink. Linda is a former K-12 special education teacher and instructor at Arizona State University. With more than thirty years in the publishing industry, Linda is the award-winning publisher of more than one-hundred books, has served as keynote speaker, conducted workshops on book publishing and marketing, and was honored by Book Publicists of Southern California as Book Marketer of the Year.

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*Wendy Ratner: Wendy resides in northern Arizona. She enjoys watching beautiful sunrises and sunsets and viewing the abundant wildlife that share her landscape. As a graduate of the State University of New York at Potsdam, she earned both a B.A. in Literature and M.S. degree in Reading. She graduated C.W. Post University with a Professional Diploma in Educational Administration. Wendy taught middle school English for over three decades and co-authored Reading Between the Lines for students who wish to learn how to write essays answering DBQ’s (Data-Based Questions) about American History. She has a particular passion for reading and collecting children’s books and used them extensively in her teaching. Wendy is continually inspired by the unique nature and culture of the high desert as well as by her husband and, of course, their beloved canine.

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Martha Reed, PhD.: Martha is your Metaphysician and Counseling Alternative. In addition to her degree in business, Martha holds a Doctorate of Philosophy (PhD) and uses modalities such as Hypnosis, Life Coaching, Spiritual Counseling and Homeopathy as tools along with her Gift of Knowing and Visionary Insights as a Psychic Medium to help people overcome destructive habits, patterns and believes and really good things just happen from there! Appointments with Dr. Martha are available in-office, via phone or Skype. Spend an hour with me – I believe you’ll find it uplifting, hopeful, thought-provoking, insightful, and life-changing.

Rita Reger: Rita M. Reger is the author and illustrator of the children’s series, The Adventures of PEPE QUACKAMOLE™.  With the help of new friends that he meets along the way, Pepe, a sombrero-wearing, scarf-toting duck, explores the many mysteries and histories of the southwest in a series of fun adventures.  Based on personal and family recipes, Ms. Reger also celebrates her family’s love of cooking and each other in the culinary memoir/cookbook, “Rosa’s Recipes, and more….” Ms. Reger currently resides in the beautiful, red rock country of Sedona, Arizona.

Visit Rita at

Kim Richardson: Kim is an author, teacher, motivational speaker, coach, mentor, ordained minister,and certified MBS Practitioner. Through sharing her own personal experiences, sheempowers individuals to transform their lives. Kim resides in Payson Arizona whereshe enjoys the warm weather and sunshine with her family. Her passion is helpingpeople discover their true gifts and how to use them in the world. Kim helps individuals to heal, forgive and expand without judgement. Kim teaches with unconditional loveas she hopes it will have a ripple effect in the world.Donate to Live Now and help create a better future.

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Cricket Rohman: Cricket Rohman grew up in Estes Park, Colorado and spent her formative years among deer, coyotes and beautiful blue columbine. Today she is a full-time author writing women’s fiction and mysteries about the cowboys, lovers, teachers, dogs, the great outdoors—even Alzheimer’s. And, so far, there is a dog in every one of her novels.

Book 1 FOREVER ISLAND and Book 2 WINTER’S BLUSH of The Fantasy Maker series, romance novellas, were released November 2017.

Prior to writing, Cricket’s career path included the following adventures: actor, singer, audio/video producer, classroom teacher, school principal, and U of A assistant professor.

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*Hayley Rose: Hayley Rose is a #1 best-selling, award-winning author, dedicated to bringing fun, educational and inspiring books to kids through her brand Books by Hayley Rose.  Hayley’s children’s books have won numerous literary awards, including the prestigious Mom’s Choice Awards®,  KART Kids Book List Award®, Creative Child Magazine’s Preferred Choice® and four Reader’s Favorite International Book Awards®, an honor she shares alongside actor Jim Carrey. In 2012 Hayley was selected as one of “The Top 50 Writers You Should Be Reading” by the

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*Jane Frances Ruby: Born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio, Jane Frances Ruby enjoyed all four seasons, playing beach volleyball, volunteering for the local ski patrol, and sail-racing on Lake Erie. She earned her bachelors and master’s degree in Chemistry from John Carroll University. After moving to Arizona, she had become fascinated by its natural history and science. She lives in Phoenix with her husband and two daughters, all major contributors to her novels. Her first novel, The Azurite Encounter, won several awards including “2016 Best Young Adult Novel” in the Great Southwest Book Festival and “2014 First Place Novel” in the Royal Dragonfly Literary Contest. Her second novel, Voiceless Whispers is due for publication soon.

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*Antoinette Sarcinella: Bringing Kumi to life has been a life-long process for Antoinette Sarcinella. Her heritage of mixed Native American and Celtic blood gives her an understanding of life from two paths.

Wolf and Owl Remember is her first book.  She learned storytelling from her mother, an award-winning news reporter.  She has reached into her own past to give her characters life. When her own children were young they heard the ancient legends that are the basis for Wolf and Owl’s journey through time.

She married Andrew in 1976 and is now grandmother to 7.  They moved to Payson in 2002.

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*Tina Scott: Tina Peterson Scott is a native of Arizona. She writes stories the whole family can enjoy such as non-fiction, historical romance, contemporary fantasy, contemporary romance, and children’s stories. Her historical romance, Farewell, My Denmark, inspired by true accounts aboard the John J. Boyd, takes readers on a journey filled with heartache and danger. My Sweet Danish Rose, depicts the struggles of early immigrants who were separated from loved ones. Both are faith-driven novels. Mrs. Scott’s third novel, Menopausal fairy Mischief, is a lighthearted diversion from the typical fairy story. It’ll tickle your funny bone and leave you satisfied.

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*Pam Sears: Pam Sears has been a Licensed Massage Therapist, Bodyworker and Psychic Medium for over 20 years. She has a private practice in Peoria, Arizona where she lives with her beloved boxer pit rescue Chelsea. In her spare time, she writes inspirational poetry and short stories. She is also an avid photographer who loves to photograph nature and wildlife on her many hikes in and around Arizona.

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*Jody Sharpe: Jody Sharpe had a rewarding career as a Special Education teacher. Writing about angels became healing after losing her daughter years ago and more recently her husband. The valuable lessons learned including moving forward and loving life in the now have set her on a course to tell the stories in her novels with love, humor and spiritual awakening. The fictitious town of Mystic Bay has given her an avenue to put characters and themes together hopefully enlightening the reader towards contemplation of the precious life and memories we are given.

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Theresa Sneed: As a mother of six, a grandmother of five, and a former elementary school teacher, author Theresa Sneed enjoys weaving moments of wonder and reflection. Theresa graduated cum laude with a BA in education and has written award-winning poetry and stories. She enjoys reading and writing clean fantasy, romance, and suspense. Her newest release is Salem Witch Haunt, a thoroughly researched, electrifying time-travel to Salem 1692.

To learn more about Theresa, visit

*Pam Knight Stevenson: Pam Knight Stevenson has been involved in researching and writing about Arizona history for more than 30 years. A native of Los Angeles, she earned a History degree from UCLA and moved to Arizona in 1972. She served as Managing Editor of the Phoenix CBS TV news department and as Manager of Production for KAET-TV, the Phoenix PBS station. She has conducted hundreds of oral history interviews, including Arizona Historymakers; journalists; quilters; Harvey Girls; and Navajo Code Talkers. Focusing on women’s history, Stevenson co-authored the books, Grand Endeavors: Vintage Arizona Quilts and Their Makers and Skirting Traditions: Arizona Women Writers & Journalists 1912–2012.

Find more about Pam Knight Stevenson at

*Michele Venne’: Michele Venne’ is an award-winning author of novels, poetry, and short stories. She published her first novel in 2008. All of her books include an introductory “Dear Reader” letter to share research and insider information, and concludes with “Questions to Ponder” so that readers may consider their thoughts on societal issues. She spends her days with the joyful practices of yoga, teaching, writing, and playing with her horses. She enjoys hearing from her readers!

Learn more at

*Marsha Ward: Marsha Ward is an Amazon best-selling author who writes authentic historical fiction set in 19th Century America. She is a multi-published writer, editor, workshop presenter, mentor, and consultant. Marsha has written five novels in The Owen Family Saga, another that begins the Promised Valley series; and many other works. A former journalist, Marsha is the recipient of the 2015 Whitney Lifetime Achievement Award and President of Rim Country Chapter of APW.

Marsha’s latest works include Blood at Haught Springs, Faith and the Foreman, and From Julia’s Kitchen: Owen Family Cookery, a recipe collection from America’s earlier times.

Learn more at Follow her on Facebook.