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


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:

Theresa Sneed: As the ninth great-granddaughter of Susannah Martin, one of the women hanged as a witch in Salem, author Theresa Sneed has a vested interest in this epic time travel. Follow her main character Bess Martin through Salem Witch Haunt, Return to Salem, and Salem Bewitched where she interacts with many of the victims from that era, including Theresa’s real grandmother, Susannah. Thoroughly researched and based on primary sources, Sneed masterfully weaves sweet romance into the freaky, fascinating, and heartbreaking stories of Salem, 1692.

Learn more at

Marshall Trimble: Official Arizona State Historian Marshall Trimble is a noted historian, author, folksinger and humorist. He’s been a board member of the Wild West History Association since its founding. The author of 22 books on Arizona and the West, he writes a monthly column, “Ask the Marshall,” in True West Magazine. He has won numerous honors and awards. He was inducted into the Arizona Music and Entertainment Hall of Fame and in 2012 he was selected for the U.S. State Department’s “Cowboy Hall of Fame Tour,” a goodwill visit to Kyrgyzstan to share American cowboy culture.

Find out more at

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

Adam Baker: Adam Baker is an Arizona native who graduated from Arizona State University and first wrote a published book at age 3. The story was titled “Batman & Ghostbusters” and by published we mean that his mom stapled a few pages together and called it a book. This helped create a love for writing which inspired him to create the Maury C. Moose Children’s Book Series.

Learn more at Follow him on Facebook.

Dan Baldwin: Dan authors Westerns, mysteries, thrillers, short story collections and books on the paranormal. He has won numerous local, regional, and national awards for writing and directing film and video projects. He earned an Honorable Mention from the Society of Southwestern Authors writing competition for his short story “Flat Busted” and earned a Finalist designation from the National Indie Excellence Awards for Trapp Canyon and for Caldera III – A Man of Blood and a Finalist designation in the New Mexico-Arizona Book Awards for Sparky and the King. Bock’s Canyon earned the Winner designation in the 2017 Best Book Awards. His paranormal books have also won numerous awards.

Learn more at

Sally Bates: From Prescott, Sally Bates grew up in the company of working cowboys and their families, cherishing the lifestyle, culture, heritage and experiences. It makes perfect sense that what she writes would be full to overflowing with “cowboy.” A singer, songwriter, award-winning novelist and photographer, she’s best known as a poet, honored with the Legacy Award and Gail I. Gardner Award from the Arizona Cowboy Poets Gathering. In the past four years she has completed four novels, three poetry collections and awards include 2014 and 2018 finalist for the WILLA Award for poetry, and 2018 finalist for Western Romance novel with Western Writers of America.

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/editor and encyclopedist in the pharmaceutical industry in New Jersey, she moved to Arizona and began writing fiction. Her short stories have appeared in award-winning anthologies. She writes the Merano & Bell Novel series featuring a small-town Arizona PI (and ex-NJ cop) and his physician wife. Reason to Hide is the next book in the series. She serves as an advisor on the board of directors of Sisters in Crime Desert Sleuths Chapter.

Learn more at

James Bultema: Historian and former LAPD cop James Bultema knows about policing in America. He is the author of the acclaimed books Guardians of Angels: A History of the Los Angeles Police Department, The Protectors: A Photographic History of Police Departments in the United States and his most recent book, Unsolved Cold-Case Homicides of Law Enforcement Officers. Bultema has served on the Board of Directors of the LAPD Historical Society and was the force behind the award-winning six-hour documentary Badge of Honor: An Insider’s History of the Los Angeles Police Department. Bultema lives in Arizona with his wife of 47 years.

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.

Connie Cockrell: A 20-year Air Force career, a manager at a computer operations company, wife, mother, sister and volunteer, provides a rich background for Connie Cockrell’s story-telling.

She writes about whatever comes into her head so her books could be in any genre. She’s published 20 books, has been included in five anthologies and been published on and 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 Facebook.

Lala Corriere: Since early childhood, Lala has held a passion for all of the arts. Her passion for the written word, turned into a full-time career and discipline. Highlights include: endorsement and long-term mentorship by the late Sidney Sheldon, USA Today-“Must read suspense,” and award-winning poetry. Readers and reviewers applaud Corriere’s hallmark original plots, in-depth character portrayals, rich settings, and authentic dialogue, all delivered with a fresh new voice and plenty of plot twists.

Lala is a desert rat. She nestles there with her husband of over 30 years along with Finnegan & Phoebe, their Teacup Yorkies.

Learn more at

Stephanie Cress: Stephanie is a work of balance and contradiction. She’s emotional yet analytical; a scientist and an artist; and she’s a high fantasy writer with aphantasia (no mind’s eye). Her writing is concise but emotional and is often referred to as “like nothing I’ve ever read before.” She also loves the rain, yet lives in the Mohave Desert in Kingman, Arizona where she steps outside her personal boundaries as often as she can.

Find out more at

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

Sharon Day: Sharon is the popular blogger of Ghost Hunting Theories and co-chair of the Chandler Film Industry group. As a researcher of the paranormal and an author, she combines her two passions into several forms of literature including screenwriting, books, and blogging. Her knowledge and experience in the field of paranormal research breathe realism and education into her work. Ghost of a Chance! is the first book in her paranormal romance series with NewLink Publishers. Book two of this paranormal romance series, Tall, Dark and Elusive! will be out later this year and involves the subject of Bigfoot.

Find out more at

Keri De Deo: Keri, 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

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

Pat Frayne: Pat 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

Gil Gabaldon: Born and raised in the White Mountains of Eastern Arizona, Gil Gabaldon’s father and grandfather, who the book, Our Little Rodeo, is about, lived on the Gabaldon ranch in nearby Western New Mexico. His dad and grandfather were amazing storytellers. The story is based on an actual trail ride which took place on Mt. Baldy in the White Mountains near Big Lake. The Forest Service named the Gabaldon Horse Camp after Gil’s grandpa. Gabaldon lives with his wife in Payson, Arizona, where he works for the Forest Service. He is writing two new children’s books and a family cookbook.

Mark Gardner: Mark Gardner: Mark is a US Navy veteran, author and broadcast professional living in Prescott, Arizona. His grandfather introduced him to the alternate history writings of Harry Turtledove at a young age. That started a life-long love affair with speculative fiction. In 2011, he began to write his own stories. His books are favorites among fans of Sin City, The Martian, The Punisher, and Firefly. His work is a fast paced, no-nonsense, thrill ride into many genres, including science fiction, superhero, dystopian, murder mystery, and historical fiction. His works are available in six languages.

Find out more 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

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 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 sign up for her newsletter at

Liz Johnson: By day Liz Johnson works in marketing. She finds time to write late at night. She is a Christy Award finalist and a two-time ACFW Carol Award finalist. Liz makes her home in Phoenix, Arizona where she enjoys theater, exploring local history, and doting on her nieces and nephews. She writes stories filled with humor, heart, and happily ever afters.

Find out more about Liz at


Perry Elisabeth Kirkpatrick: Perry lives in an undisclosed location outside of Phoenix where she and her husband chase their four little boys and an escape-artist dog. They don’t chase their cats, however, because cats hate that. She is the author of “The Kitten Files” mysteries, “The Accidental Cases of Emily Abbott” spy series, and multiple short stories. In addition to her writing, Perry enjoys graphic design, playing a number of musical instruments, and watching movies that make her laugh.

Find her books, newsletter, and free stories at Find her alter-ego’s fantasy books at

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.

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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.

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Nelle Lewis: Deborah “Nelle” Lewis is a fiction writer living and playing in Phoenix, Arizona. She’s hopped lily pads coast-to-coast, with her eighteen-year stop in Ohio cementing it forever in her heart as home. When she’s not head-down writing the third book in her Sam Carter mystery series, you can find her online at

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

Bill Lynam: Bill Lynam’s children’s books, Bernie, the Flying Squirrel and Lucky Foxes (editor), were published in 2018. Just out, Bernie la Ardillita Voladora, a dual language book in English and Spanish. His Steampunk Mashup, a collection of science fiction short stories was published in 2017. He is the co-author of Footloose Pilgrims, a coming-of-age travelogue, published in 2014. His historical fiction novel, The Confederate Canuck, will be published in 2020.

Find out 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).

Visit her website.

Merle McCann:  Award-winning author, Merle McCann,  is known for her National literature award-winning Longjohners Mystery Series for middle readers. Her first adult novel won 4th place in a National competition. She has added three more novels to her collection, all enjoying excellent reviews. She lives in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Follow her on Facebook.

Leta McCurry: Leta writes twentieth-century historical fiction about the indomitable courage and spirit of ordinary women who fight for a life on their own terms and refuse to be pigeon-holed in a “woman’s place.”

Leta lives in Arizona, and enjoys writing, reading, the open road on a Stallion motorcycle, good food, travel, genealogy, and a large, fun-loving family. Favorite destinations are Ireland and Singapore. She is the author of Introduction to Commercial Real Estate, High Cotton Country, A Shadow Life, and Dancing to the Silence and is presently writing her fourth novel, All the Colors of My Soul.

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.

Elizabeth Mosaidis: Elizabeth Mosaidis, MA, is a Stepfamily Foundation Certified Coach and has been a professional educator in several countries for over fifteen years. Elizabeth is the author of The Stepmom Project: A 30-Day Personalized Journey and Stepmom Bootcamp: A 21-Day Challenge. Her lifelong passion is to empower stepfamilies through knowledge, self-exploration, and coaching methods. She lives in Phoenix, Arizona, with her husband, stepdaughter, a small brown dog, and an uncoordinated cat.

Find out more at The Stepmom Project.

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.

Learn more at

Michael Norman: Mystery writer Michael Norman is a former police officer and state parole board member. He spent 25 years as a Professor of Criminal Justice Studies at Weber State University, Ogden, Utah. Norman is the author of the Sam Kincaid mystery series including The Commission, Silent Witness, and his latest release, Slow Burn. In addition, he has two novels in the J.D. Books mystery series: On Deadly Ground and Skeleton Picnic.

Michael lives in Salt Lake City, Utah, and Sedona, Arizona, with his wife, Diane, and their pit bull Annie. He enjoys collecting western art, rescuing pit bulls, hiking, and skiing.

Find out more at

Suzie Olsen: Suzie is a systems engineer in Phoenix, AZ and is currently working on the search and rescue system for the US Coast Guard. She is the author of Annie Aardvark, Mathematician and the creator of STEM Spark. Her spark is to encourage students, especially girls and minorities, to consider careers in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). She lives with her husband and child, performing STEM experiment after STEM experiment with her own kid.

Find out more at

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, Sigma 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.

Follow him on Twitter.

Cricket Rohman: Cricket writes Western Romance, Mystery, and Women’s Fiction. Featured today among eight of her published books are Books 1 & 2 in The McAllister Brothers Series and a holiday picture book for your young children or grandkids. She writes every day dividing her time between a Colorado cabin and her Arizona condo and loves to hear from readers!

To find out more about Cricket, her books, her life, please visit her website and subscribe to her monthly email letter.

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

Visit Hayley at or follow her on Facebook.

Jane Frances Ruby: An award-winning novelist, essayist and short story writer, Jane Frances Ruby also presents to elementary, junior high and high schools. Born and raised on Ohio’s North Coast, Ruby participated in volleyball, race-sailing, and ski patrolling. After getting married and moving to Phoenix, she found a desert Southwest adaptation to these skills—hiking, canyoneering, and wilderness medicine. Her first two novels, The Azurite Encounter and Voiceless Whisper are a product of her experiences but in a Grand Canyon sort of way..

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John Rust: A native of New Jersey, John Rust has published eleven books of spanning the genres of sci-fi, action/adventure, and sports. His titles include Sea Raptor, The Fallen Eagle Trilogy, and Here and Gone: Short-Lived Sports Teams and Leagues. A graduate of Mercer County College and the College of Mt. St. Vincent, John is the sports director at KYCA radio in Prescott, and also does play-by-play for live-streams of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University sports.

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Pam Sears: Pam Sears: Pam 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. Her second book, Heart of the White Dove, received a 5-star review on Readers Favorite and Goodreads.

Find out more at

Jody Sharpe: Jody had a rewarding career as a Special Education teacher. Writing about angels became healing after losing her daughter and then her husband. The valuable lessons she learned about moving forward and loving life in the now have set her on a mission to tell stories 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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Ellen Stotts: Ellen is a trained Caring for the Heart counselor as well as a teacher and trainer of this Biblical Heart Counseling Model. For the past twelve years she has had the privilege of sitting with hurting people and assisting them in coming to freedom in their personal and marital lives. In addition, she has trained interested individuals in the Caring for the Heart counseling method.

Ellen and her husband, Mike, are the parents of three adult adopted children and have one grandson. They reside in Arizona where the sun seems to shine all the time.

Find out more at

Heidi Thomas: Heidi grew up on a working ranch in eastern Montana, riding and gathering cattle for branding and shipping. Her parents taught her a love of books and her grandmother rode bucking stock in rodeos. She followed her dream of writing with a journalism degree from the University of Montana. Heidi is the author of the award-winning Cowgirl Dreams novel series based on her grandmother, and the non-fiction book, Cowgirl Up: A History of Rodeo Women. Her newest novels, Seeking the American Dream and Finding True Home, are based on her mother who emigrated from Germany after WWII.

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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

Alice Voyles: Alice and her husband, Melvin, have lived in Arizona for twenty years. Alice enjoys writing, sharing her desire for people to pursue their dreams through speaking and teaching, playing with her grandchildren, volunteering and hiking. After the inspiration of a high school creative writing course she pursued her passion by writing children’s books and short stories. she hopes her writings will motivate readers to search for meaning beyond their circumstances—to find springs in the barren regions of life. Alice’s hope is that the creative writings within these pages bring healing to the wounds of your soul.

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Marsha Ward: Marsha lives the life of a hermit under the inspiring Mogollon Rim where she writes authentic historical fiction set in 19th century America, with plenty of action, adventure, and romance. She is the author of the popular “Owen Family Saga,” and works on new pieces to expand that universe with “Shenandoah Neighbors” and “Owen Family” stories. Among her recent works are Scandalous, Broken, Ned’s Choice, and Mended by Moonlight.

Learn more at Like her on Facebook.