CONTRIBUTORS FOR Fall issue 2020

David Baldacci has been writing since childhood, when his mother gave him a lined notebook in which to write down his stories. (Much later, when David thanked her for being the spark that ignited his writing career, she revealed that she’d given him the notebook to keep him quiet, “because every mom needs a break now and then.”) David published his first novel, Absolute Power, in 1996. The feature film adaptation followed, with Clint Eastwood as its director and star. In total, David has published 41 novels for adults; all have been national and international bestsellers, and several have been adapted for film and television. His novels are published in over 45 languages and in more than 80 countries, with 150 million copies sold worldwide. David has also published seven novels for younger readers.
A lifelong Virginian, David received his Bachelor’s degree from Virginia Commonwealth University and his law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law, after which he practiced law in Washington, D.C.
In addition to being a prolific writer, David is a devoted philanthropist, and his greatest efforts are dedicated to his family’s Wish You Well Foundation®. Established by David and his wife, Michelle, the Wish You Well Foundation supports family and adult literacy programs in the United States. In 2008 the Foundation partnered with Feeding America to launch Feeding Body & Mind, a program to address the connection between literacy, poverty and hunger. Through Feeding Body & Mind, more than 1 million new and gently used books have been collected and distributed through food banks to families in need. David and his family live in Virginia.

Amy Bassin is a New York artist who works together with Mark Blickley on text-based art collaborations and videos.  . Bassin is co-founder of the international artists cooperative, Urban Dialogues. Their text-based art book, ‘Dream Streams,’ was recently published by Clare Songbird Publishing House. Two of their videos will represent the United States in the 2020 year-long world tour of Time Is Love: Universal Feelings: Myths & Conjunctions, organized by the esteemed African curator, Kisito Assangni. 

Michael Benson is the author of Mosquito Point Road, Haunting Homicides, Nightmare in Rochester, and The Devil at Genesee Junction. He is a recipient of an Academy of American Poets award. many true crime books tell vividly of today’s most heinous criminals, and the clever and stalwart lawmen who bring them to justice. He is currently a regular commentator for two true-crime series, Evil Twins and Evil Kin, on the Investigation Discovery (I.D.) channel, and had also made guest appearances on that channel’s Evil Stepmoms, Deadly Sins, Southern Fried Homicide, and On the Case with Paula Zahn. He’s also been featured on ABC’s 20/20.

David Cowles was born in Rochester, N.Y. in 1961, the last of six children. His father, Hobart, was a Professor of Ceramics at Rochester Institute of Technology, and his mother, Barbara, was manager of Shop One, a Rochester gift shop heavy on the crafts.
Cowles landed a job at the Democrat and Chronicle in Rochester in 1983, and began his freelance career two years later, leaving the paper to work freelance full-time in 1991. Cowles’ work has appeared in Entertainment Weekly, Rolling Stone, Vibe, Time, Newsweek, Playboy, People, The Village Voice, Money, Worth, Fortune, Fast Company, Los Angeles Magazine, New York Magazine, The Boston Globe, The Chicago Tribune, The New York Times, The New Republic and Vanity Fair, among others.
Cowles has worked as a creator, designer, storyboard artists and director on animated projects for Disney, Sesame Street, They Might Be Giants and Frederator Studios, among others.

Martin Edwards is the latest recipient of the CWA Diamond Dagger, the highest honour in UK crime writing. He is the author of nineteen novels, most recently Mortmain Hall and Gallows Court. He also conceived and edited Howdunit, a masterclass in crime writing by members of the Detection Club ranging from Ian Rankin to John Le Carre. He has received the Edgar, Agatha, H.R.F. Keating and Poirot awards, two Macavity awards, the CWA Margery Allingham Short Story Prize, the CWA Short Story Dagger, and the CWA Dagger in the Library. He has twice been nominated for CWA Gold Daggers and once for the Historical Dagger; he has also been shortlisted for the Theakston’s Prize for best crime novel of the year for The Coffin Trail. He is consultant to the British Library’s Crime Classics series, a former chair of the Crime Writers’ Association, and current President of the Detection Club. His novels include the Harry Devlin series and the Lake District Mysteries, nine non-fiction books and seventy short stories; he has also edited over forty anthologies.

Jonathan Everitt’s poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in BlazeVox, Scarlet Leaf Review, Small Orange, Impossible Archetype, Ghost City Press, The Bees Are Dead, The Empty Closet, and Le Mot Juste, among other journals. Jonathan has previously read at the Genesee Reading Series at Writers and Books in Rochester, led a workshop for LGBTQ poets at Rochester’s Out Alliance, and co-founded the monthly open mic, New Ground Poetry Night at Equal Grounds Coffeehouse in Rochester’s South Wedge. He earned his MFA in creative writing from Bennington College. 

Guy Fraser-Sampson is the author of The Hampstead Murders, a series of contemporary mysteries written in the spirit of the Golden Age, which have been described as quirky, intelligent, and ‘a love letter to the detective novel’. The first has recently been published in the US by Felony and Mayhem as What Would Wimsey Do? His darkly disturbing economic history The Mess We’re In was nominated for the Orwell Prize. His Mapp & Lucia novels have all been optioned by BBC TV, and have won high praise from other authors including Alexander McCall Smith, Gyles Brandreth and Tom Holt.

Christine Green is a freelance writer, teaching artist, writing coach, and speaker. She currently writes a literary arts column for Rochester’s (585) Magazine and is a regular contributor to 55 Plus Magazine and In Good Health Magazine. Christine was the founder and host of the popular reading salon, Words on the Verge.  

Stephen Ground graduated from York University, then moved to a remote, isolated community in Saskatchewan’s far north. He’s since returned south and co-founded Pearson House Films. His work is featured in Lucky JeffersonFrom Whispers to RoarsBack Patio Press, DASH Literary Journal, and elsewhere. Find more at

Tom Kastanotis is a writer living in Florida. Before becoming a full-time writer he was an award-winning journalist, where he learned how to observe the characteristics of individuals. He combines those observations with life’s day-to-day events to produce fictional short stories. He views writing as a way to exercise his imagination and entertain readers. 

Tricia Knoll is a Vermont poet whose work is widely published in journals and anthologies. She is an enormous fan of libraries. For more poetry, visit 

Christine Law’s work has appeared on the letters page of Writers Forum, for Ian Renée Hospice Trust, Age UK Essex and Puddles Magazine for the PDSA. Regarding her unique voice and prose style, Chris says; “in college a teacher would put a line through my work and write ‘nonsense sentence’ . . . but she never explained why. I went on to win several Care certificates at College, taking up writing again in my later years.”  Another of Christine’s stories, ‘A Black Country Lass,’ can be viewed at The NUHA Foundation website. She lives in Wolverhampton, UK.

Joan Leotta plays with words on page and stage. Her short stories, poems, essays, and articles have appeared widely–from the Washington Post to Sasee, to North Carolina Literary review, to, Mystery Weekly, the Lawyerist and two Guppy Anthologies. On stage she performs one-woman shows of women in history and folk and personal tales of food, family, and strong women. Find out more about Joan here and on Facebook here.

Ellaraine Lockie is widely published and awarded in as a poet, nonfiction book author and essayist. Her fourteenth chapbook, Sex and Other Slapsticks, was recently released from Presa Press. Earlier collections have won Poetry Forum’s Chapbook Contest Prize, San Gabriel Valley Poetry Festival Chapbook Competition, Encircle Publications Chapbook Contest, Best Individual Poetry Collection Award from Purple Patch magazine in England, and The Aurorean’s Chapbook Choice Award. She also teaches writing workshops and serves as Poetry Editor for the lifestyles magazine, LILIPOH.

John Mueter is a pianist, composer, educator, translator, and writer residing in Kansas City, Missouri. His short fiction has appeared in many journals, including the American Athenaeum, Lowestoft Chronicle, Halfway Down the Stairs, Bibliotheca Alexandrina, Simone Press Publishing, The Literary Nest, and The Corona Book of Ghost Stories; poetry in The Bombay Literary Magazine and the Haiku Journal. Learn more about John here.

Frances Park is the author of literary novels, memoirs, and children’s books published in seven languages and praised by The Times Literary Supplement, The Washington Post, NPR, Radio Free Asia, and Voice of America. Shorter works have appeared in The Massachusetts Review, Arts & Letters, Gulf Coast, The Chicago Quarterly, The Belleview Literary Review, The London Magazine, and O: The Oprah Magazine, to name a few. Her forthcoming book THAT LONELY SPELL: Stories of Family, Friends & Love (Heliotrope Books 2021) deals with love and loss against the backdrop of her unique Korean American experience.

Liana Sakelliou has published 18 books of poetry, criticism and translation in Greece, the USA and France.  Her poems have been translated into several languages and have been published in a number of anthologies and international journals.  She teaches American literature, specializing in contemporary poetry, and creative writing in the Department of English Language and Literature of the University of Athens.  The recipient of grants from the Fulbright Foundation, the Department of Hellenic Studies of Princeton University, the University of Coimbra (Portugal) and the British Council, Ms. Sakelliou is a member of the Greek Writers’ Association Coordinating Committee and a short story judge in the European Union Prize for Literature.

Don Schofield was born in Nevada and raised in California. He has been living and writing in Greece since 1980.  A citizen of both his homeland and his adopted country, he has published several poetry collections, the most recent of which are The Flow of Wonder (2018) and In Lands Imagination Favors (2014), as well as an anthology of American poets in Greece and translations of contemporary Greek poets. He is a recipient of the Allen Ginsberg Award (US), the John D. Criticos Prize (UK) and a Stanley J. Seeger Writer-in-Residence fellowship at Princeton University. His first book, Approximately Paradise, was a finalist for the Walt Whitman Award, and his translations have been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and the Greek National Translation Award. Currently he lives in both Athens and Thessaloniki.

Ann Marie Sekeres returned to artmaking after stealing her kid’s iPad in 2019.  Since then, her work has been published in literary journals worldwide.  Her first commissioned cover art for the samurai has just been published by Yellow Arrow Publishing in Baltimore, MD, and her illustration, The Girl Detective, is currently on view at the Montclair Art Museum. Follow her work at @annmarieprojects on Instagram, Ann Marie Projects on Facebook and at her website.

Jesse Sensibar’s work has appeared in The Tishman Review, Stoneboat Journal, Waxwing, and others. His short fiction was shortlisted for the Bath Flash Fiction Award and the Wilda Hearne Flash Fiction Prize. He is the author of Blood in the Asphalt: Prayers from the Highway (Tolsun Press). You can find him at

Art Taylor is the author of the story collection The Boy Detective & The Summer of ’74 and Other Tales of Suspense and of the novel in stories On the Road with Del & Louise, winner of the Agatha Award for Best First NovelHe won the 2019 Edgar Award for Best Short Story for “English 398: Fiction Workshop,” originally published in Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, and he has won three additional Agatha Awards, an Anthony Award, three Macavity Awards, and three consecutive Derringer Awards for his short fiction. His work has also appeared in Best American Mystery Stories, and he edited Murder Under the Oaks: Bouchercon Anthology 2015, winner of the Anthony Award for Best Anthology or Collection. He is an associate professor of English at George Mason University, and he has contributed frequently to the Washington Post, the Washington Independent Review of Books, and Mystery Scene Magazine. Learn more about Art here.

Mark Temple is a writer on Golden Age books and authors and the editor of the ‘Golden Age of Crime’ Facebook page.

Mike Valerio’s fantastic article on Raymond Chandler’s Los Angeles previously appeared in the September 2017 issue of Black Mask Magazine.

Jim Zola is a poet, photographer and children’s librarian living in North Carolina.