Guests for 2014
If you are interested in applying as a guest for APF 2014, please
click here for more information.
Dan began drawing at an early age, finding inspiration in classic Disney films and 80’s Saturday morning cartoons. Since graduating from animation school in 2000, Dan has worked for companies such as
Disney, Pixar, Leap Frog,
DC Comics, Random House,
Upperdeck, AKA Studios,
Ape Entertainment and IDW Publishing.
Currently, Dan is the pencil artist on IDW's Ongoing
Ghostbusters monthly comic.
Founded in 2011 on the back of the award-winning steampunk short, JOHN GRAY, Timid Monster seeks to capture the strange, the unusual, and the monstrous in all of us.
Join filmmakers Dan Baker, Katie Baker, and Rachel M Taylor for a special behind-the-scenes peek at AVARICE, “one of the most remarkable [films] to come out of Memphis” (John Beifuss, The Commercial Appeal). Awarded “Best Fantasy Short” by Wizard World Nashville, AVARICE tells the tale of a young girl who wanders off her path into a land of soot and greed.
Follow Timid Monster into the unknown as they prepare for their first feature-length sci-fi flick, Aurora Centauri:
Christina Barber is an award-winning author and paranormal researcher with over 10 years in the
Intrigued by ghosts as a teen, Christina began researching and investigating the paranormal in 2003. Her
passion for ghosts and research into the phenomena has grown, and after several published works later,
Christina is still fascinated by ghosts. She enjoys digging around in the musty old historical records just as
much as she does using high-tech electronic equipment to capture possible ghostly evidence.
In her paranormal investigations, Christina applies the use of police procedural methods, learned as a
criminal justice major in college, and prefers daytime investigations. Christina and her team use a
skeptical approach to the equipment and evidence produced. You can learn more about her and her team at
Christina’s published books include Spirits of Georgia’s Southern Crescent (Schiffer, August 2008)
and Georgia’s Ghosts (Schiffer, 2014). Christina’s fiction works, also about ghosts, include
(Dark Urban Fantasy, April 2008), and Greystone (Paranormal Thriller, 2005).
Tom Briscoe is the cartoonist behind
99 Reasons to Hate Cats: Cartoons for Cat Lovers. Along with the joys of marriage, Tom “adopted” his lady love’s two cats. His book is how he copes with his hopeless situation.
Tom Briscoe’s cartoon work has appeared in The Birmingham
News, The Southern Times,
Funny Times, Black & White, Birmingham Weekly,
and Universal UClick's
GoComics.com and on his own website (hatecats.com). Tom also regularly produces editorial cartoons on local issues for the
Birmingham News and al.com.
Betsy is a cartoonist, writer, and one half of the team behind Pink Pineapple Ink. She is the creator of the webcomic FRUIT! It has been going since 2011, and it is about fruit… as you might expect.
She is also the creator of the new webcomic Hotel Mungo, which is about a group of people that work in a quirky hotel and all the odd things that happen there. When she is not drawing or writing, Betsy loves playing video games and watching scary movies. She lives in Nashville, TN with her husband Johnathon and their two ridiculous dogs—Harvey and Garrus. You can read her comic FRUIT! at:
Johnathon is a freelance artist and aspiring writer and video game designer, as well as the other half of the Pink Pineapple Ink team.
He has worked on various webcomics since 2008 and recently made the jump to literature and video game design. He is busy working on his first full length novel and putting the finishing touches on a point-and-click adventure game which will debut this summer. He lives in Nashville, TN with his wife Betsy.
You can see all the projects in the works at:
Kevin Cain, an author and haunted collector, grew up in Alabama enjoying the wonderful old southern tradition of storytelling, particularly his grandmother’s stories about growing up in Alabama during the Depression which he recently published in his first book
Thanksgiving Hen On A Chicken Shed: Stories My Grandmother Told Me. Writing since the ripe old age of eight, Kevin has published stories and poetry in various magazines. Inspired by the Jeffrey series written by Alabama author Kathryn Tucker Windham as well as growing up in a haunted house of his own, Kevin took a keen interest in the paranormal at an early age. He recently published a book
The Legends Of Indian Narrows which collects the ghost stories he grew up listening to in his old neighborhood that was built over native American burial ground in the western part of Jefferson County as well as his own experiences in the home he lived in. Kevin has also recently become a haunted collector. His most notable items are three dolls that are haunted by three very lovely little girls who often make their presences known in his home. Kevin has a novel titled
Haunts, based on true haunted places throughout the Southeast, coming out by Spring 2014. He still resides in Alabama in the Shelby County area.
Scott learned to read from comic books and can now muddle his way through a half dozen different languages, or at least buy groceries. So what has he done? What hasn’t he done! He taught Ethics and Theology at the Kyvskia Bogoslovinia Seminaria in Ukraine and Old and New Testament at Jeff State. He has written about the Occult and Faeries in books like the
Imperial Age Omnibus for Adamant Entertainment and sorcerous bloodlines for the
Best of Dragon Magazine. He has been the pastor of a tiny rural Baptist church and won 2nd place in Iron DM. His fiction has appeared on the White Wolf website and he can tell you all about the Documentary Hypothesis of the origin of the Torah, the workings of a dozen different RPG systems, how many warp cores are in a Klingon Bird of Prey, and the secret origins of every member of the
Legion of Substitute Heroes. Scott Carter, Renaissance Geek, lives in Hoover, AL with a cat and three red-heads: his lovely wife Janica and his lively toddlers Rebekah and Jessie. Both of whom know that the appropriate response to seeing a monster is “kill it and take its stuff.”
Ashley Chappell is the author of the Dreams of Chaos Series, a young adult fantasy series that has been hailed by reviewers as “Darker and more entertaining than the Heroes of Olympus Series.” She writes fantasy primarily for young adults but upcoming releases such as
Of War and Taters and The Seventh Day also include themes targeted for new adults and adults, mostly because her dirty sense of humor sometimes gets the better of her. Her novel
Tilt: Dreams of Chaos #2 introduces Core, the game of the gods which includes the best parts of Risk and poker with an element of role playing. Instructions and free printable game boards will be posted on her website in September 2014 for anyone adventurous enough to test their skills against the gods.
Ms. Chappell currently resides in Huntsville, AL with the love of her life. During her writing time her cats sometimes share her lap with her computer, should they choose to allow the usurpation at all. When not writing, reviewing, or burying her nose in one of her well-worn Terry Pratchett or Neil Gaiman novels, she can be found sailing with her fiancé on their boat ‘Dupracity’ (Fans of Kurt Vonnegut will want to ask her what that means!).
For more information about Ashley and her books, visit
I’m a artist that has done a comic strip for the Birmingham Times Newspaper (twice). I have a comic book
coming out soon called Independent Authority in black and white that showcase Independent
Artist through 4 page stories.
I’ve have a pin-up in Baker Comics Pink Hammer art book.
I’ve done 2 pages in ICC’s I Hero issue soon to come out and I have another book in the works called
Amen the Chosen One going to kick-starter but if not successful I will still release it myself.
Michelle Lowery Combs
Michelle Lowery Combs is an award-winning writer and blogger living in rural Alabama. She is the author of the YA novel
Heir to the Lamp, first in the
Genie Chronicles series from World Weaver Press. Michelle is a member of the Alabama Writers’ Conclave, Alabama Writers’ Forum and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. She is currently working on
Solomon’s Bell, sequel to Heir to the Lamp, and
Daddy’s Girl, a coming-of-age story set in 1960’s Alabama. You can find her at
http://michellelowerycombs.com, on Twitter @miclowery77 and on facebook.
Cam Crowder has entertained notions of writing since he was just a runty ginger sitting on his Grandfather’s knee. Eventually, after a bit of self-persuasion, he decided to give writing a go. Ten days later, he’d written his first novel, and he hasn’t looked back since.
His first novel is Broken Bloodline Book 1: Electus (currently available on Amazon) with the second volume,
Legacies, soon to be available.
When not writing or at work, Cam enjoys playing guitar, spending time with his incredible fiancee’, and playing Street Fighter 4 AE. (He’s always up for a good money match.)
He can easily be found/contacted at: Facebook.com/AuthorCamCrowder or DreamlessDepths@yahoo.com
Bryan Crowson was a journalist for 27 years at a major daily newspaper, working a decade as a reporter and about 17 years as copy desk chief. He also reviewed video games for about 15 years. After being laid off in 2012 due to changes in the industry, he decided to leave journalism and return to art, which he had very nearly chosen as his path in college. For the past year, at age 50, he has been working full-time to start anew and build an art career doing portrait commissions, specializing in whimsical “cosportraits” that have a sci-fi or fantasy twist. He is currently illustrating a children’s book with writer Cricket Strom of Dothan which they plan to self-publish later this year. He also plays the banjo.
See Bryan's work in any of his online galleries:
Joe Crowe is an editor, proofreader, and lead writer of
RevolutionSF.com, a sci-fi site and podcast that features geek-related culture, comedy, reviews, and commentary. He is proofreader at Birmingham agency o2ideas.
Crowe is the director of DragonCon's American Sci-Fi Classics Track (http://www.facebook.com/americanscificlassics.)
Joe’s writing appears in the Avengers commentary series, Assembled: 50 Years of Earth’s Mightiest, and the sci-fi anthology Blackthorn: Thunder on Mars.
Joe lives in Fultondale with wife Stefanie and daughter Quin, who last year at Phoenix Festival schooled him in Brady Bunch trivia.
Joe's work has been called “Swiftean in its satirical eloquence” and “the worst piece of garbage I have ever seen.” Find him to see which is which at
K. S. Daniels
K. S. Daniels began writing stories in the 3rd grade. Her first story, complete with illustrations, was about a girl who was sucked into another world via a television set. Her next foray into writing involved horror, murder, and ghost stories, until she moved onto her current genre of Science Fiction. Daniels’ first attempt at a novel length work began in the eigth grade. Hand written and spanning across three black and white mead notebooks, the novel, titled
The Kaiburr crystal, remains unfinished.
In 2002, Daniels’ graduated as High School Valedictorian and went on to pursue first a Bachalor’s degree in Business Administration, then a Master of Arts in English, at the University of South Alabama. She completed the Master’s program with a GPA of 4.0 and afterwards remained on as an adjunct instructor, teaching classes ranges from composition and argumentation to British and American Literature. During her time at the University of South Alabama, Daniels’ had the honor of working with such writers as Carolyn Hanies (Bones series) , Sue Walker (Poet Laureate of Alabama 2003-2012), and Jasmyn Ward (National Book Award recipient 2012).
Her first novel, The Valkryie Profiles, was a quarter-finalist in Amazon’s 2013 Breakthough Novel Award. It is the first in a trilogy, with the second book slated for release in mid 2014. She will also have a horror short story titled “Chimera” appearing in the second Luna’s Children anthology by Dark Oak Press, also out mid 2014. Daniels’ currently lives in New Orleans, LA with her awesome husband, capricious daughter, two goofy pit bulls, one hyper poodle and a very wicked cat.
Kayla Davis is a 2004 graduate from the Atlanta College of Art, now SCAD in Atlanta. She has a BFA in computer animation with a concentration in 2D animation. She has been running an autobiographical web comic, Casually Kayla, about her life, being married, and being awkward, since 2009. She is now currently writing and illustrating her long form comic, Carbon.
Missa Dixon commands one of the most extraordinary lives ever. Good thing because she planned it that way. To help a friend, Missa began writing in 2009. Finding she liked the challenge, Missa spread her wings into steampunk, urban fantasy, paranormal romance, and non-fiction. Her first published short story
For The Love of Steam in the anthology Dreams of Steam that was a semi-finalist for the Darrell Award for Best Short Story of 2011. Which lead her to writing
For the Fear of Steam (2012 Dreams of Steam 2),
For the Hate of Steam (2013 Dreams of Steam 4), and
For the Envy of Steam (2014 Dreams of Steam 5). Her first stand-alone book was a work of non-fiction called
Interviews from the Ark written with Joy Ward, where we learn what’s really on your beloved pets mind. Blush with success she in barked into urban fantasy and is currently working on
The River Series, a heady mix of the real life issues of otherkins saving the world while destroying them selves and each other.
In keeping with her life motto of “acquisition and distribution of knowledge by any and all means necessary," Missa produced a very successful podcast called Missa’s Urban Home on Blog Talk Radio for two years. She keeps a full time post as a math and math and physic teacher. In her spare time Missa studies metaphysics and earned her Reiki master attunement in 2007. Missa happily lives outside Memphis, TN with her four rescued dogs, and a big collection of fantasy art.
I love talking about two things—Disney World and movies. Hence, I’m a Professional Disney Travel Planner and a Movie Podcaster. So fanatical am I about watching films, I have my trusty Leonard Maltin Movie Guide marked with the 2911 movies I’ve seen, ever, and have my favorite 500 ranked from top to bottom and have future plans for which movie will be my 2 yr old’s first—“Finding Dory” in 2015. That’s why our Podcast is so much fun, because we discuss everything from my co-host’s love for Kevin Costner to my own inclination for bad, craptastic films (“Troop Beverly Hills”, anyone?!). Come join us at
www.thedeucecast.com, talk about the good (Star Wars original trilogy), the bad (the Star Wars new trilogy) and the ugly (anything containing the words “Batman” and “Schumacher”).
S. L. Duncan
S. L. Duncan writes Young Adult novels inspired by his travels around the world and the characters he’s met. He’s interested in finding those unique connections between stories and places, people and circumstance.
When he’s not writing, S. L. Duncan plays guitar and soccer, loves to cook, and
occasionally practices law. He lives in Birmingham, AL with his
wife and son. His first novel, The Revelation
of Gabriel Adam, debuts August 12th, 2014 by Medallion Press.
Represented by John Rudolph, Dystel & Goderich Literary Management.
Sam has been a freelance Illustrator for the past five years. His clients include Alderac Entertainment Group, Fantasy Flight, Lone Wanderer, and Hero Games to name a few. As an illustrator for both book covers and hobby games, Sam specializes in painting strange scenes of epic fantasy and graphic horror. He describes his art as “stylized realism,” portraying fantastical things in a graphic manner, but with an eye towards real life. He loves to focus on exaggerated expressions, vibrant colors, and villainess activity. Sam’s preferred medium is oil paint.
Sam has been fascinated by the strange and the macabre from a very young age. Fortunately for his budding morbid creativity, he was raised in a household that encouraged his interest in all things weird—Sam’s father was a magician and his mother a ventriloquist and clown. Now Sam pursues the weird in his art, never having been inhibited by a “normal” upbringing.
Additionally Sam has a deep love for Norse Mythology, and in his personal work depicts scenes from the lore of the Northmen. His reputation as a Norse Myth enthusiast is increasing and collectors have begun to seek him out for his interpretations of the northern gods.
Sam also does Zombie Portraits, where he takes your photo and draws a picture of you as a zombie!
Born in Tennessee, Jonathan began reading at an early age. His love of fiction, folklore and by-gone days was further fueled when his family relocated to the United Kingdom. He returned to the U.S. as a teenager where he survived parochial school, before earning his degree from Brevard College in the captivating wilds of Western North Carolina. After developing the world of Autumn’s Fall, Jonathan moved to Chicago where he began writing in earnest. His greatest literary influences are Robert E. Howard and Lloyd Alexander. He currently resides in Atlanta with his wife, son and cat. .
If you wish to learn more about him and his fantasy series, The
Autumn's Fall Saga, please visit his website
Allan Gilbreath denies that he was raised by wolves, but still enjoys quiet moonlit evenings. He is an accomplished skeptic, cook, gardener, computer geek, martial artist, and avid student of arcane knowledge. Allan is also a nationally recognized and award-winning author, publisher, speaker, and instructor. He has appeared on television, stage, movies, radio, web/podcast, and tours the country in live appearances. He enjoys serving on panels and covers a wide range of topics from the serious to the outrageous. In his adult vampire novels,
Galen and Dark Chances, he links sensual fantasy with danger and predation to excellent effect. His exceptional use of plot tension between the various characters sets a wonderful stage for the little details that bring it all to life. Allan's Jack Lago supernatural mysteries are known for their attention to detail and suspense. His short stories have appeared in numerous anthologies and his collection,
Allan Gilbreath: A Short Story Collection covers his three favorite genres; science fiction, dark fantasy, and steampunk. He is currently working on several media projects including paranormal research, comedy shows, and action movies. For more information please see:
Patrick Giles is a Illustrator and Sketch Card Artist out of Birmingham, AL. Patrick got his first break with Conan O' Brien in 2011 when he was asked to do a piece for his 2011 San Diego Comic Con show and exhibit, "The Fine Arts of the Flaming C." Patrick's piece was the headliner of the show and also turned in to free shirts on available at SDCC.
He worked with Conan again in 2012 for his Chicago Week shows. Patrick did an animated piece for the first show of Chicago Week. In 2013 Patrick got his first sketch card art job with Topps doing cards for
Mars Attacks: Invasion and
Star Wars Illustrated: A New Hope. In 2014 he has already signed on to do another
Star Wars set for Topps (out in April 2014), a DC Comics set for Cryptozoic and
Guardians of the Galaxy for Upper Deck and Marvel.
Currently an instructor of sociology and history at Gadsden State Community College, Derrick Griffey holds a Master's degree in Sociology from Middle Tennessee University and a Master's degree in History from the University of Alabama. A long-time fan of science fiction, Mr. Griffey sees the application of pop culture in the classroom as both a useful and an effective tool to engage students in a dialogue on a variety of issues. Mr. Griffey's publications include a study of the use of technology such as iPads within the classroom setting.
Stephen Guenther has been interested in the paranormal for as long as he can remember. He has investigated with groups in Tennessee, California and Louisiana.
Stephen is currently co-founder, lead investigator and event
manager of Expedition Unknown, a Memphis paranormal investigation group and regional
TAPS Family affiliate. He is also co-host of the
Expedition Unknown Radio Show featured LIVE on the award winning online station TMVcafe.com. His travels have taken him across the country and internationally including trips to sacred and historic sites such as
Stonehenge, New grange and Chechen Itza. Stephen brings his unique blend of humor and insight into investigations, convention panels and events. He has performed in several past
charity musical comedy productions for CHOC. He can often be scene leading seminars and training in the construction industry. His interest in EVP's and other spirit communication is balanced with a scientific skepticism.
Renaissance man Allen Hammack is a game designer, author, scientist, and even actor! Allen's most current work is the tournament AD&D adventure Night of the Black Swords (DiecastGames.com), where lawful evil characters (each with their own agenda and a healthy mistrust of the other players) are sent on an impossible mission into the planes of Hell itself! (Excellent art from Jeff Easley and Diesel.) In his gaming career, Allen has contributed to some 70 products as author, designer, editor, or developer. These include the popular classic C2:
Ghost Tower of Inverness; A1-A4: The Slave Lords Series; I9: Day of Al-Akbar; and games including Top Secret and Boot Hill. His Ghost Tower module was referenced in the 2005 movie
Dungeons & Dragons: Wrath of the Dragon God, as Berek says the cleric was with him “at the assault on Castle Inverness”. (At which point a veteran player of Allen's campaign said, “Now we know it's a fantasy—implying anyone went to Inverness and came out alive!”) Allen's current gaming interests are mostly directed towards railroad boardgames and
Dawn Patrol (he's a nationally ranked competitor in both),
WoW, and Puerto Rico.
Allen has been called the “Master of Mythology” and writes with authority on using myths and legends of the world in gaming. He wrote three books on the subject (Fantastic Treasures I and II, and
Monsters of Myth & Legend III) for Mayfair Games. Sadly, these literary gems are hard-to-find collectors' items! (i.e., the royalties have stopped…) He contributed to the new edition of the WWI boardgame
Dawn Patrol. In addition, Allen designed a boardgame based on the mythical Norse battle of Ragnarok, and was a chief editor of Deities & Demigods and Dungeon Masters Guide during the five years he served at TSR. Hired by Gary Gygax, Allen was Manager of Designers during the “Golden Era” of TSR, supervising a talent pool that included Tracy Hickman, Harold Johnson, Lawrence Schick, Zeb Cook, Tom Moldvay, and others. In his gaming career, Allen has contributed to some 70 products as author, designer, editor, or developer. These include the popular classic
C2: Ghost Tower of Inverness; A1-A4: The Slave Lords Series;
I9: Day of Al-Akbar; the games Top Secret and
Boot Hill, and the tournament AD&D adventure Night of the Black Swords. His Inverness module was referenced in the 2005 movie Dungeons & Dragons: Wrath of the Dragon God, as Berek says the cleric was with him “at the assault on Castle Inverness”. (At which point a veteran player of Allen's campaign said, “Now we know it's a fantasy—implying anyone went to Inverness and came out alive!”) Allen's current gaming interests are mostly directed towards railroad boardgames and Dawn Patrol (he's a nationally ranked competitor in both), World of Warcraft and Puerto Rico.
After leaving TSR, Allen returned to Birmingham and with his wife Susan started the Lion and Unicorn game, book, and comic store, which they sold many years ago but still have fond memories of friends and customers. He helped design computer programs to diagnose leukemias and anemias for cardiovascular research at UAB; worked as Manager of Information Systems for an explosives manufacturer, and worked as a quality control chemist for an alloy and metals processor. For over seventeen years Allen has been putting his chemistry degree to work as an environmental chemist/programmer analyst for a secret government laboratory in an undisclosed location, where he and his associates design high-energy lasers for shark heads. In this capacity he has lectured and presented some scientific papers, and he squeezes in guest appearances at the occasional convention. Allen was a founder of the Birmingham Doctor Who fan club, now known as the
Blue Box Companions (aka the BBC, of course). He also served on the Board of Directors for Continuity, the Birmingham science fiction convention that had several successful years.
Allen has a B.S. in Chemistry, a Master's in computer science and he has done post-graduate work in chemistry, business administration, and environmental science. Allen was an editor for Ærodrome, the magazine of the Fight In The Skies Society (WWI aviation), and wrote a chapter of its melodramatic serial,
Adventure! and Glory?, in which…ah, but that would be telling…
Allen has been in over 40 theatrical productions, including an opera set in the American Old West, as Caiaphas in a local production of
Jesus Christ, Superstar, and as an extra in the Tommy Lee Jones baseball movie
Cobb. Allen earned a green belt in jujitsu before retiring with no bones broken, which he considered an even trade. Players of NTN Trivia Showdown on Tuesday nights may occasionally see him on the leader board under the logon "DR WHO".
Favorite Introduction: By Dragonlance co-author Tracy Hickman to Margaret Weis— "Allen is the man who taught me how to write.”
Steeped in pulp magazines, old radio shows, and all things of that era’s pop culture, Tommy Hancock lives in Arkansas with his wonderful wife and three children and obviously not enough to do. He is Partner in and Editor in Chief for Pro Se Productions, is an organizer of the New Pulp Movement, was a founding member and original Editor-in-Chief of ALL PULP, works as an editor for Seven Realms, Dark Oak, and Moonstone. He is also a writer published by Airship 27 Productions, Pulpwork Press, and others with work upcoming from Moonstone Books (including his first comic book series,
SATAN’S DAUGHTER), Dark Oak, and more. He works as Project Coordinator for Moonstone Entertainment and was the Founder and Coordinator for PULP ARK, a Pulp Culture Convention in the South from 2011 to 2013.
Jessica Hawke's debut novel is
Phantom Touch, published by Crescent Moon Press. She loves writing for young adults because of the endless potential and imagination of teenagers. She is active in local writing groups, including acting as municipal liaison for her region’s NaNoWriMo chapter. She currently resides in Augusta, Georgia, where she is a middle school teacher and freelance musician.
David Alastair Hayden
David Alastair Hayden scribbles and podcasts tales of fantasy adventure for young and adult readers. He lives in Alabama, along with his delightful wife and three lovely cats. David studied history, literature, and religion at the University of Alabama. He practices Yang Taijiquan, and he enjoys playing and designing roleplaying games. David is also an avid collector of vintage manual typewriters, mostly from the 1950's.
Barry Hayes was born in Illinois with a pen in his hand and head full of stories. He grew up in the mountains and coalfields of beautiful Southwest Virginia. After graduating high school, Barry moved to Alabama where he studied English and History at Jacksonville State University.
Barry spent years running numerous role playing games for his friends in both Virginia and Alabama. He later teamed up with his friend Jeremy Hicks and co-wrote two screenplays based upon one the fantasy world. Barry and Jeremy meshed their ideas together and after the smoke had cleared they had forged the
Cycle of Ages Saga. Adapted from the screenplay, their first book,
Cycle of Ages Saga: Finders Keepers; was published in July of 2013 by Dark Oak Press.
Barry has also co-written three more screenplays. They include the
Cycle of Ages Saga sequel,
Sands of Sorrow; a road trip comedy entitled
Across the Border: South to Alaska and a dark comedy/horror tale about meth zombies plaguing a trailer park in Alabama, titled
Zombies on Ice. This screenplay placed as a Top Finalist in the 2011 Cherub Films Horror Screenplay Competition under the title
Night of the Living Rednecks. He is
currently writing his original science fiction space opera as
well as a few short stories of the post-apocalyptic kind. Barry
currently resides in Alabama with his wife, their two dogs and
several house cats they have rescued over the years.
One of the chosen few to be born in Alabam’, Jeremy Hicks spent several years working as a field archaeologist throughout the Southeast before teaming up with his longtime friend and co-author, Barry Hayes, to realize a shared creative dream. The writing team of Hicks & Hayes created an original horror-fantasy environment (Faltyr™), wrote a screenplay (The Cycle of Ages Saga: Finders Keepers) to introduce it, and then adapted it into a novelization of the same name. As a result, their first novel was published by
Dark Oak Press and Media at the end of July 2013. Their second novel in the Cycle of Ages Saga (CoAS: Sands of Sorrow) will be released in 2014.
As co-founder of Broke Guys Productions, Jeremy has co-written three more as-of-yet unproduced screenplays, including the first sequel to
CoAS: Finders Keepers. He is credited as associate producer “The Curse of the Rougarou”, an independent horror film written and directed by Kalila Smith.
Jeremy Hicks is also a short story writer and poet. He has a hair-raising tale about a werewolf seeking revenge as well as a steampunk Cycle of Ages Saga story appearing in upcoming Dark Oak anthologies. Several of his poems are available online through Yahoo! Voices.
James Hill is an Illustrator who lives in Gardendale Alabama. He has recently released series of comics through Twilight Star Productions called Necrotrancer and is currently working on The Misadventures of Adam West for Blue Water Productions. James is also the owner of Art Monkey Studios where he is currently working on a few top secret projects, none of which I am at liberty to speak about. You can also visit his website:
where you can view or purchase or even commission art.
James is also married to a wonderful lady named Jennifer Mayo who is also serves as his manager and publicist. They have been married for 12 years and still going strong. They also have 2 wonderful boys Andrew and Micah, neither of which is employed by James as of this writing.
Shane Ivey is partner and managing editor at Arc Dream Publishing, an award-winning publisher of fiction and tabletop roleplaying games including:
the Cthulhu Mythos gaming magazine The Unspeakable Oath ("steeped in atmosphere");
the game and fiction line Delta Green ("unsurpassed influence and reputation"), which blends modern technothriller intrigue with Lovecraftian cosmic terror;
The Sense of the Sleight-of-Hand Man, a
Call of Cthulhu campaign in the Dreamlands of H.P.
Lovecraft; the supervillain roleplaying game Better Angels ("It’s fresh, it’s different and it’s fun");
the deadly World War 2 superhero game Godlike ("richly super [yet] delightfully bleak and war-torn");
the spookily charming Monsters and Other Childish Things ("a wonderfully creepy games about kids and the monsters who love them");
the Victorian superhero RPG The Kerberos Club;
Wild Talents, A Dirty World, Reign, and tons more.
Shane and Arc Dream were early pioneers in crowdfunding years before the explosive popularity of Kickstarter. Some of Arc Dream's biggest properties came to life (or came back to life) thanks to the power that this new funding model brings to creators who use it wisely.
Shane also co-founded
RevolutionSF.com with Joe Crowe. Shane programmed the whole thing by hand back in the days when he could still remember what "PHP" stands for, and was its editor-in-chief for years before tabletop gaming ate his life.
Outside of games and funny websites, Shane has done time
over the years as a copy editor for the Birmingham News, a
magazine editor for UAB, a security guard who nearly got
shot and stabbed a couple of different times in only three
months on the job (seriously, screw that job), a drug
counselor, and a law student. He lives in Chelsea, Alabama,
with a wife who is a great cop and an even better
photographer and three teenage kids who totally love hearing
about the vagaries of small-press publishing every single
Rick Johnson (aka The World's Smallest Giant) is a writer/artist living in Tuscaloosa Alabama. Having grown up on a steady diet of comic books and horror movies, he naturally thought he could earn a living in one of those fields. Much to his surprise, life often throws curve balls. So Rick took a “real” job and became a productive citizen. But he never outgrew his love of all things macabre. A few years ago, Rick began self publishing his own brand of horror and science fiction under the banner
Phat Daddy Studios Presents. With stories like
Bune’s World, LMC-1 and
Hard Luck, he continued to refine his approach to graphic storytelling.
Operation Silver Moon marked a turning point. Teaming with award winning writer, Bobby Nash, gave Rick the opportunity to revamp his drawing style. Taking cues from E.C. comics, Warren Publishing magazines, and 40s film noir, Rick injected a new mood into his art.
Currently, Rick is providing artwork for the horror web series
Upyri and collaborating with writer, Sean Taylor, on the science fiction tale
A Stitch In Time: The Return of The Invisible Man for
IDW. He is also working on a followup to his
Phat Daddy Fable Hard Luck.
Russell Jones is a native of Birmingham, Alabama and will graduate this May with a degree in Broadcasting from the University of Alabama. A lover of great film and television, Russell is no stranger to the screen himself. Russell is a professional actor here in Birmingham represented by
Real People Talent Agency. He has been involved in both local and national commercials, independent films, and theatre productions for the past nine years, working with such organizations as
Birmingham Festival Theatre, Virginia Samford Theatre,
Stardome Comedy Club, and Birmingham Children’s Theatre, among others. Russell has also had the privilege of producing live theatre in Birmingham, as well as acting as the PA for several UAB sports teams on a regular basis. When not on stage or in front of a camera or microphone, Russell can often be found spending time with his wife and son.(top)
Ciara Knight writes to 'Defy the Dark' with her young adult speculative fiction books. Her most recent international best-seller, Pendulum scored 4 stars from RT Book Reviews, accolades from InD’Tale Magazine and Night Owl Top Pick. Her young adult paranormal series, Battle for Souls, received 5 stars from Paranormal Romance Guild and Night Owl’s Top Pick, among other praises.
When not writing, she enjoys reading all types of fiction. Some great literary influences in her life include Edgar Allen Poe, Shakespeare, Francine Rivers and J K Rowling.
Her first love, besides her family, reading, and writing, is travel. She's backpacked through Europe, visited orphanages in China, and landed in a helicopter on a glacier in Alaska.
Ciara is extremely sociable and can be found at Facebook @ciaraknightwrites, Twitter @ciaratknight, Goodreads, Pinterest, and her website
Robert J. Krog
Robert J. Krog is an author and editor from Memphis, TN. He has been writing since the seventh grade. A fan of Tolkien and C. S. Lewis, he writes stories that, if not exactly emulating their style, are in a similar vein, philosophically. His published works include:
The Stone Maiden and Other Tales; the novella,
A Bag full of Eyes; and numerous short stories in various anthologies from Sam’s Dot, Alban Lake, and Dark Oak.
A Bag Full of Eyes won the Darrell Award for Best Midsouth Novella 2013. Mr. Krog is editor of the Dark Oak anthology
A Tall Ship, a Star, and Plunder. He is working on a dystopian/apocalyptic novel titled
His website is www.krogfiction.yolasite.com.
David LaRocca was born in Providence, Rhode Island in 1980 and has lived in Alabama most of his life. As a child he developed a passionate interest in art that paralleled a growing fascination with fantasy, darkness and mystery.
LaRocca has been working as a professional Digital, Traditional and 3D artist for over 14 years. He has done work in the 3D Animation, Comic book, RPG, Educational and Video Game industries. In this time, he began illustrating his own worlds of fantasy and horror. The spectral, haunting quality of his paintings reflects his interest in the darker side of the human psyche.
It is no surprise that LaRocca finds inspiration in the works of artists in diverse media: musicians like Tool, authors like H.P. Lovecraft, and fellow illustrators like Brom. Like these artists, LaRocca is unafraid to explore the shadowy worlds of the mind without regard to the polite tastes of the mainstream. His gallery represents the digital, traditional, and conceptual pieces from that exploration.
He has been published in: Infected By Art #1, ImagineFX #25, 10th Muse vs. The Legend of Isis #2, Creepy Creatures Bestiary (supplement for Pathfinder), Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting, and the upcoming Infected By Art #2. You can also visit his Facebook page at:
In 1965, an object fell from space, somewhere near Kecksburg, PA. This was the same year that Alan was born. To date, no connection has been made between the two events but that hasn’t stopped the conspiracy theorists from speculating.
D. Alan Lewis is an ‘alleged’ native of Chattanooga, Tennessee who now resides in Nashville with his children. In 2006, Alan took the reins of the NWMG’s Novelist Group where he works with new and aspiring writers, leads writing and publishing workshops, and has worked to publish their 4 anthologies.
Alan’s debut novel, a fantasy murder mystery, The Blood in Snowflake Garden was a finalist for the 2010 Claymore Award. Alan’s other books include,
The Lightning Bolts of Zeus from Dark Oak and
The Bishop of Port Victoria and
The Airpirates of Casablanca from Pro Se Press. He is also editing of 3 anthologies for Dark Oak Press,
Luna’s Children: Full Moon Mayhem,
Luna’s Children: Stranger Worlds, and
Capes & Clockwork.
He also has short stories in a number of anthologies, including
Dreams of Steam 4-Gizmos, Black Pulp, Nashville Noir, Beyond the Skyline, Comfort Foods, and Midnight Movie Creature Feature Vol.2.
Cathlena Martin, Ph.D.
Cathlena Martin, Ph.D., is the Assistant Professor of Game Studies and Design at the University of Montevallo and the Director of the Honors Program. Dr. Martin researches and teaches game-based learning, the history of games, and game design. Her specialization is children's literature and games, and her publications include chapters in edited collections on topics such as
Peter Pan and video games, play in Ender’s Game, and game adaptations from children's texts. For more information, go to
Born in southern Missouri, and traveling the American southwest throughout his early life, Logan L. Masterson became rooted in ideas rather than places. Fantasies and imageries are his stock-in-trade. His tools are intuition, observation, vocabulary and rhythm. Well, those and a good word processor. Masterson’s first book-length work,
Ravencroft Springs, will be published by Pro Se Press this summer. Look for his stories “Clockwork Demons” in
Capes & Clockwork, and “Shadow of the Wolf” in
Luna’s Children II, both from Dark Oak Press. A published poet, he lives in Nashville, Tennessee with five dogs, two turtles, and a lovely wife.
Jamie McDaniel, PhD
Currently an assistant professor of English and the Technical Writing director at Pittsburg State University, Dr. McDaniel holds a Ph.D. in English from Case-Western Reserve. Dr. McDaniel has published and presented extensively on film -- including publications on Dario Argento's
Phenomena in Culture, Medicine, and Psychiatry and on
Time after Time in the forthcoming
Critical Companion to Science Fiction Film Adaptations. Dr. McDaniel is currently the sponsor of the anime group at Pittsburg State University and recently developed and taught classes utilizing elements of pop culture. His class, "Monsters and Mayhem," used the framework of the "monstrous other" to teach elements of general literature, and he has recently been dubbed a “zombie expert” due to his presentations about zombies and vampires.
Hello, my name is Scott Merrill and I am a costume crafts artisan. I don't remember a time in my life where I didn't have a need to create something from something else. Even as a child I would take apart my toys and turn them into something new. Thankfully, I have a very understanding mother and a father who ran a boyscout camp that started me with wood and leather crafts at a very early age. All this combined with a grandfather who taught me all I needed to have my very own rocket ship in my backyard were two steel drums, a dryer door and my imagination, led me to believe you can build anything with hard work, an active imagination, and an understanding of your tools and materials.
I started Jacksonville State University as an art major and found theater by way of make-up effects. Once in the theater my art talent flourished, painting murals in the scene shop, sculpting in the prop shop, and various mask making projects. I found my ability to see various shapes and how they could go together clicked with draping and pattern making. I one day realized, I was a theatre major. It was difficult to tear me away from the costume and props shops. There were so many tools and so many things I could not wait to build. The day I found costume crafts as a job where all my training in art school, costume shop and props all came together in one was amazing.
C. Marie Mosley
C. Marie Mosley is an author of Young Adult and New Adult Fiction, exploring elements of fantasy, paranormal, and romance. She grew up in a small town outside of Birmingham, Alabama. She now lives in North Alabama with her husband and son.
C. Marie currently has two different series in publication:
Empyreal, a YA Contemporary Fantasy series, in which the first two books are currently available (Awaken & Rise and
Fall), along with a prequel novella (Prelude), and the third installment in the series (Rogue) is set for release in late Spring. The
Harden Fields series, a Contemporary Romance series based on a fictional town set in the heart of Alabama, also has two books currently available (This Side of Forever and
Never Say Never), with the third installment (After Ever) set for release this Summer.
When she’s not making up her own stories, she’s getting lost in someone else's. Aside from writing, C. Marie is an avid-reader, always on the go, loves to dance & lives through music, loves to make people laugh, and enjoys exploring her other creative outlets…but most of all, she loves to spend time with her wonderful family.
You can visit her anytime at
www.cmariemosley.com. You can also find C. Marie on Facebook, Twitter @CMarieMosley, as well as Tumblr, Goodreads, Pinterest, & Google+.
J L Mulvihill
Born in Hollywood J L Mulvihill had dreams of being a rock star. Forgoing the call to stardom to become a writer instead, JL is the author of the young adult fantasy novel,
The Lost Daughter of Easa, from her
Elsie Lind series, an engaging fantasy novel bordering on science-fiction with a dash of steampunk published through Dark Oak Press and Media/Kerlak Publishing, and a young adult steampunk novel,
The Boxcar Baby of the Steel Roots series, a great American adventure in an alternate steampunk dystopian world, published through Seventh Star Press. She is also co-edited with horror author
Alexander S. Brown of the anthology entitled
Southern Haunts which includes her short horror story entitled,
Bath 10, and published through Seventh Star Press. Other published stories by J L Mulvihill include,
The Book, a steampunk thriller found in
Dreams of Steam III anthology; Chilled Meat, another steampunk thriller, found in
Dreams of Steam II-Of Bolts and Brass, anthology;
The Leprechaun’s Story, a steampunk urban fantasy found in the anthology,
Clockwork, Spells, & Magical Bells.
A Real Dragon and Magic in The Ozarks, found in
Memories and Dreams published by
The Fine Arts Center of Hot Springs, AR;
Jen’s Spicy Crawfish Bisque, found in
It’s All about Food with a Mississippi Twist, published through the
Clinton Ink-Slingers; and The Proud Oak, published through the
Gulf Coast Writer’s Association.
J L Mulvihill has written several articles for Examiner.com as the
Jackson Literature Examiner. She is also an event’s coordinator for the Mississippi Chapter of
Imagicopter known as the Magnolia-Tower, a volunteer organization of authors and artists who promote their own publications while lending a hand to other writers and artists. J L Mulvihill is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI), Gulf Coast Writers Association (GCWA), The Mississippi Writers Guild (MWG), The Pacific Northwest Writers Association (PNWA), as well as her local writing group, the Clinton Ink-Slingers.
Jen is currently working on novels for both the Elsie Lind series
entitled, Elsindai, and the second
novel to the
Steel Roots series. She also continues to write short stories in the fantasy, steampunk, horror, and sci/fi genre, as well as poetry inspired by her life in Mississippi. She has also been known to Karaoke from time to time when she thinks no one is looking.
his secret lair in the wilds of Bethlehem, Georgia, 2013 Pulp
Ark Award Winning Best Author, Bobby Nash writes a little bit of
everything including novels, comic books, short prose, graphic
novels, screenplays, media tie-ins, and more. Between writing
deadlines, Bobby is an actor and extra in movies and television,
including appearances in Deviant Pictures’ Fat Chance, FOX’s The
Following, USA’s Neil, Inc. and more. He is also the co-host of
the Earth Station One podcast (www.esopodcast.com) and a member
of the International Association of Media Tie-in Writers. Bobby
was named Best Author in the 2013 Pulp Ark Awards, his first
professional writing award. Rick Ruby, a character co-created by
Bobby and author Sean Taylor also snagged a Pulp Ark Award for
Best New Pulp Character of 2013. For more information on Bobby
Nash please visit him at
www.twitter.com/bobbynash, among other places across the
I fancy myself a Podcaster. I love talking about movies and my love for movies. The Star Wars Universe is by far my favorite and I could talk about that for hours on end but movies in general are my area of expertise. I've been Podcasting for 3 years and have over 100 episodes under my belt. I along with my co-host from the beginning, David Dollar, can be heard on The Deucecast at
Jacob 'Pinky' Pinkerton
Jacob 'Pinky' Pinkerton as been an avid film lover ever since the age of seven when he first watch Lord of the Rings back in 2001. Since then, he has gone on to be in many small productions varying from school projects to independent films. Pinky joined The Deucecast last year and is on track to get a minor in film from UAB.
Jim O’Rear has been involved in the entertainment industry for over twenty five years, beginning his career on tour as The Youngest Professional Magician with David Copperfield, Harry Blackstone Jr., and The Great Tomsoni and opening for acts like Cheap Trick and John Anderson.
With his “magical” background and having been trained in New York at The American Academy Of Dramatic Arts, it was only natural that Jim move into the realm of film, television, and theatre where he has worked steadily as an actor, stuntman, and special make-up effects artist on such projects as
Star Trek 4, Stephen King's The Boogeyman,
ABC's Nashville, Lethal Weapon 3,
Fall Of The House Of Usher,
Day Of The Dead, The Vampire Wars,
A Christmas Carol, Cop & ½,
Psycho Beach Party, Evita,
Little Shop Of Horrors, No Retreat No Surrender 3,
Mortal Kombat: Conquest, and many more with actors including Martin Sheen, Burt Reynolds, Mel Gibson, Amanda Plummer, Kevin Sorbo,
Hayden Panetierre, Connie Britton, Maximillian Schell, Robert Englund, Jon Voight, John Billingsley, Chris Sarandon, and others.
Wanting to get some of his own ideas onto the screen, Jim successfully moved into the area of screenwriting. Although competition is tough, he has written and sold a number of horror-related screenplays, including
The House Of Pain (in development with Robert “Freddy” Englund, Gunnar “Leatherface” Hansen, Tom “Friday The 13th” Savini, Bill “ChopTop” Moseley, and Debbie “Scream Queen” Rochon),
Hayride Slaughter, Hayride Slaughter 2,
The Deadly Obligation, Vampyre Tales,
Wolfsbayne, The Deepening, and (currently playing on cable)
Scream Farm. Jim also placed third for Best Screenplay in TSA’s screenwriting competition and was a finalist in the Fade In Screenplay contest and Writer’s Network competition.
Jim’s horror writing has not stopped there. He has also contributed many articles to national publications, such as
Scary Monsters Magazine, Scars Magazine,
Haunted Attraction Magazine,
Comics Interview, and Underground Entertainment, and has been recognized in
Fangoria Magazine, Alternative Cinema,
Fright Times, and
Femme Fatale Magazine. Jim was also “immortalized” as a comic book character opposite Thor in an issue of MARVEL Comic’s “What The…?” and has appeared as himself (along with Ken Foree, Tom Savini, Debbie Rochon, Brinke Stevens, James Gunn, and more) in the fictional horror novel,
BAD MOON RISING… the third installment of Jonathan Mayberry’s
GHOST ROAD BLUES trilogy…. and in ZOMBIE: CSU. In addition, Jim has written a paranormal book about real hauntings in Tennessee for Schiffer Publishing titled
TENNESSEE GHOSTS and has recently released his follow-up titled
HOLLYWOOD’S PARANORMAL FILMS.
Currently, Jim continues to work as an actor and stuntman on several films per year, recently cast opposite Andrew “Wishmaster” Divoff (Lost,
Airforce One), Tom Savini (Grindhouse, From Dusk Til Dawn), and Jason Carter (Babylon 5,
The Dead Matter, playing Kane Hodder’s (Hatchet,
Friday The 13th) brother in
Old Habits Die Hard, acting opposite Linnea Quigley (Return Of The Living Dead) and Monique Dupree in
Post Mortem America, appearing with John Dugan (Texas Chainsaw Massacre),
Scott Tepperman (Ghost Hunters International), and Daniel Taylor
(Return Of The Swamp Thing) in The Hospital,
portraying an alien bounty hunter in
It Came From Trafalgar, with Reggie Bannister (Phantasm), Butch Patrick (The Munsters), Linnea Quigley, Brinke Stevens, and Gunnar Hansen (Texas Chainsaw Massacre),
and continuees to make appearances opposite Hayden Panetierre
(Hereos) and Connie Britton (American Horror Story) in
the hit ABC television show Nashville. As if that isn’t enough, Jim continues to write for horror publications all over the world, consult for horror-related projects internationally, and is the founder of
Celebrity Ghost Hunters.
For more info: www.JimORear.com
Darrell "Doc" Osborn
Born mid-last century at a US Government facility in Orleans, France, Doctor Osborn continues in his quest for Complete World Domination through the use of his Mad Science and Balloons of Doom.
And now a message from the Doctor:
Greetings! Welcome to my realm of evil! You should be proud of yourself. Few that have ventured this far into the nexus between Magic and Science have retained their sanity or their lunch. (That reminds me, I need to order a pizza. Now where did I leave my Phone of Evil?) I will be touring the South this year searching for qualified minions and demonstrating my latest innovations in Magical Mad Science and my Twisted Balloons of Doom!!! Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid!!!!!
Few can claim the varied background of Stephanie Osborn, the Interstellar Woman of Mystery.
Veteran of more than 20 years in the civilian space program, as well as various military space defense programs, she worked on numerous space shuttle flights and the International Space Station, and counts the training of astronauts on her resumé. Her space experience also includesSpacelab and ISS operations, variable star astrophysics, Martian aeolian geophysics, radiation physics, and nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons effects.
Stephanie holds graduate and undergraduate degrees in four sciences: astronomy, physics, chemistry and mathematics, and she is “fluent” in several more, including geology and anatomy.
In addition she possesses a license of ministry, has been a duly sworn, certified police officer, and is a National Weather Service certified storm spotter.
Her travels have taken her to the top of Pikes Peak, across the world’s highest suspension bridge, down gold mines, in the footsteps of dinosaurs, through groves of giant Sequoias, and even to the volcanoes of the Cascade Range in the Pacific Northwest, where she was present for several phreatic eruptions of Mount St. Helens.
Now retired from space work, Stephanie has trained her sights on writing. She has authored, co-authored, or contributed to more than 20 books, including the celebrated science-fiction mystery,
Burnout: The mystery of Space Shuttle STS-281. She is the co-author of the “Cresperian Saga,” book series, and currently writes the critically acclaimed “Displaced Detective” series, described as “Sherlock Holmes meets The X-Files.” She recently released the paranormal/horror novella
El Vengador, based on a true story, as an ebook.
In addition to her writing work, the Interstellar Woman of Mystery now happily “pays it forward,” teaching math and science through numerous media including radio, podcasting and public speaking, as well as working with SIGMA, the science-fiction think tank.
The Mystery continues.
James Palmer is a writer, editor and publisher of science fiction and pulp adventure. He has written articles, interviews, reviews and columns for
Strange Horizons, The Internet Review of Science Fiction and
Tangent Online. His stories have appeared in anthologies and collections including
Blackthorn: Thunder on Mars,
Gideon Cain: Demon Hunter, The Adventures of Harry Houdini,
Tales of the Rook vol. 2, Mars McCoy: Space Ranger vol. 2,
The New Adventures of Semi Dual, and others. He is editor and co-creator (with former comics scribe Jim Beard) of the popular alternate history giant monster anthology
Monster Earth and its sequels
Betrayal on Monster Earth and the forthcoming
War on Monster Earth. James also edited the weird western anthology
Strange Trails and Robots Unleashed! He also has several novels in the pipeline. A recovering comic book addict, James lives in Northeast Georgia with his wife and daughter. For more info on his shenanigans, visit
Van Allen Plexico
Van Allen Plexico is the award-winning author of a dozen SF and superhero novels and many more short stories, scripts and novellas. In the nonfiction world he co-wrote two Amazon.com bestselling books on college football and two popular books on Marvel’s
Avengers. He created or co-created characters including Gideon Cain, Mars McCoy, Blackthorn, Lucian, Hawk, and the Sentinels, and he has written, edited and/or packaged pulp adventure anthologies for several different publishers. He hosts the White Rocket Podcast (discussing pop culture, for the Earth Station One Network) and the Wishbone Podcast (covering Auburn football for the War Eagle Sports Radio Network). A character in the Iron Man comics and a Peacekeeper regiment in
Farscape were both named after him, and he once peed
with Q. He’s an Associate Professor of Political Science and
History at Southwestern Illinois College.
HC Playa is a writer, a mad scientist in training (translation: full –time graduate student), a mother of three, and an animal wrangler. Although, some days she wonders if maybe she's the one being wrangled.
An avid reader since the precocious age of four, she devoured books from numerous genres, but science fiction and fantasy hold a special place in her heart. A rambling, late night phone conversation with her sister sparked an idea, which led to discovering a new passion. Bitten by the writing bug, at last count she had seven novels in various stages of completion, and a growing collection of short stories.
Her favorite activity is to play in fantastical worlds, as it's the best adventure there is.
Dr. Gregory L. Reece
L. Reece is the author of
Creatures of the Night: In Search of Ghosts, Vampires, Werewolves and Demons/;
Weird Science and Bizarre Beliefs: Mysterious Creatures, Lost Worlds and Amazing Inventions;
UFO Religion: Inside Flying Saucer Cults and Culture;
Elvis Religion: The Cult of the King; and
Irony and Religious Belief.
Most recently, Greg completed a chapter for the upcoming Oxford Handbook of Science Fiction. His review of Richard Toronto’s The War Over Lemuria: Richard Shaver, Ray Palmer and the Strangest Chapter of 1940’s Science Fiction and Fred Nadis’ The Man from Mars: Ray Palmer’s Amazing Pulp Journey was recently published in the Los Angeles Review of Books. His work has been reviewed in Fantasy & Science Fiction magazine and has been featured in The Fortean Times. Greg is also featured in the documentary film, A Short History of Flying Saucers, part of the Blu-Ray special edition release of the science fiction classic The Day the Earth Stood Still.
Dr. Reece holds a Ph.D. in Religious Studies from the Claremont Graduate University with a specialty in philosophy of religion and theology, an M.Div. from the Vanderbilt University Divinity School, a B.A. from Samford University, and an A.A. from Martin Methodist College.
His studies in philosophy of religion, particularly his work on irony and religious belief, have led Greg to explore religion from its more idiosyncratic border regions rather than from its more stable center. In pursuit of an understanding of religion, he has attended an Elvis Impersonator contest in Las Vegas, celebrated the birth of the King of Rock and Roll in Memphis, attended UFO and Tesla Technology conventions, had his molecules rejuvenated via the alien technology of the Integratron, visited Roswell and Area 51, had a close encounter with the extraterrestrials known as the Tall Whites, explored an underground cavern rumored to lead to a subterranean civilization, hunted Bigfoot outside of Paris, Texas, attended a Satanic mass, interviewed vampires, been trained in the art of exorcism, and gone hiking with a werewolf.
Greg lives at Brookehouse, a big, old home in the Montevallo, Alabama historic district, along with his wife Kristen, his son Sam, and his daughter Olivia. In his spare time, and when he not making plumbing repairs, he likes to build robot, spaceship, and ray-gun sculptures from junk he finds at the thrift store.
After found as an infant crawling among books in an abandoned library, Kimberly Richardson grew up to be an eccentric woman with a taste for listening to jazz, drinking tea, reading books, speaking French and Japanese, playing her violin and writing stories that cause people to make the strangest faces. Her first book,
Tales From a Goth Librarian, was published through Kerlak Publishing and was named a Finalist in both the USA Book News Awards for Fiction: Short Story for 2009 and the International Book Awards for Fiction: Short Story in 2010. Kimberly is also the Editor of the award winning Steampunk anthology
Dreams of Steam, the sequel,
Dreams of Steam II: Of Brass and Bolts. (Kerlak Publishing) and the upcoming anthology
Dreams of Steam III (Kerlak Publishing). Other short stories and poetry have been published through Sam’s Dot Publishing and FootHills Publishing. Her first full-length novel,
The Decembrists (Kerlak Publishing), will be out in 2012. (top)
Anne Riley is an author of young adult fiction cleverly disguised as a high school Spanish teacher. She lives in Birmingham, Alabama, with her husband and two daughters.
Anne married her husband, Rob, in June 2008. Later that summer, she began writing a story called
The Clearing. She finished the novel in December and, strangely enough, landed an agent (Alanna Ramirez, Trident Media Group) a mere month later. The book didn’t sell to a traditional publisher, so Anne self-published it for a limited run of one year and continued to work on new material. When the time came to pull it from publication, an editor at Compass Press contacted Anne about acquiring the book. A revised version with a new cover and a new name–Shadows of the Hidden–was released by Compass Press in December 2012.
When she isn’t teaching, writing, mothering, or wifing, Anne enjoys engaging with her church and reading all the fabulous novels she can squeeze in. She’s also really great at pretending to clean her house and putting off the laundry until it overtakes an entire room. She is not good at sports, despite having played volleyball for four years of her life, but she is a very talented coffee-maker.
Kim Johnston is founder of the paranormal research team Spirit Communications and Research (SCARe) and author of
Haunted Shelby County, Alabama. Kim and the rest of the SCARe team have been helping families across Alabama with paranormal activity in their homes for the past two years. Kim is a software developer by day but frequently volunteers her time at local schools and programs teaching her audience about the history of Shelby County and giving writing tips. She also co-hosts
The Scare Show with Blaine Rohan.
Blaine Rohan has over 20 years of paranormal investigative experience and is a clairvoyant, clairaudient and medium. He has been seeing and hearing spirits since the young age of 4 years old. He has investigated all over the United States and uses his gifts to help others free of charge. Blaine is co-host of
The Scare Show, which discusses all things paranormal, and is broadcast in 190 countries worldwide on Digital Radio 103 FM. He is also writing his first book entitled Sacred Voices which will be available soon.
Nicole Sparks is a seasoned paranormal investigator and an important part of the SCARe team. She became interested in the paranormal after growing up in an old, haunted home in Wisconsin. Nicole has captured some of the most exciting paranormal evidence our team has encountered and is very good with audio analysis.
Kat Hobson is a professional photographer by day and experienced paranormal investigator by night. She is also an empath and medium. She is able to hear spirits and feel their presence. Kat has worked with Gulf Paranormal Society as well as The SCARe team. She helped resolve one of the team’s worst hauntings to date.
Shane Busby is co-founder of The SCARe team and has an expert level of knowledge on the occult. His background in Computer Science comes in handy as the tech guy. He provides a healthy dose of skepticism for the team and has helped debunk several cases.
Adam Schwartz is an award-winning filmmaker and a professor of media production at the University of Alabama. Schwartz received a BA in psychology from the University of Alabama and then went on to receive a MFA in film production from the University of New Orleans.
When he was a young child, he fell in love with the movie Ghostbusters, its sequel and cartoon spin-off and attributes the franchise as one of the reasons he decided to pursue a career in filmmaking. In 2010, having moved back to Alabama after being in New Orleans, he discovered the Alabama Ghostbusters fan organization and promptly joined. In 2013, he combined his passion for filmmaking and his passion for
Ghostbusters in an ongoing fan-film web series project called
Alabama Ghostbusters: A Web Series. Schwartz directs the series and co-writes with fellow UNO alumnus Nicky Stevens, but the rest of the crew is made up entirely of hardworking, dedicated University of Alabama Telecommunication and Film students. Four episodes have been released so far and have received praise from Ghostbusters fans from around the world.
He also recently completed Zom-Com, a 22 minute zombie TV pilot starring Jason Griffith (“Sonic the Hedgehog”), Dan DeLuca (season 4 of HBO’s
The Wire), Erica Schroeder (“Yu Gi Oh,”), and Jarrod Cuthrell, a native Alabamian.
Other select credits include Watermarks, a short narrative film set in the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Katrina,
Torch, a short documentary highlighting Birmingham's Vulcan statue and the traffic safety light it once held in its outstretched arm, and
Barney and the Martians, an award-winning short narrative that has screened at various festivals across the country.
Faith Serafin is the director of the Alabama Paranormal Research Team. She started her research and endeavors in paranormal science 25 years ago and has authored several books based on the haunted history of Alabama and Georgia. Faith believes that history is an important element of paranormal research and investigating. The educational value behind supernatural history can be told, “One ghost story at a time”. She organized the Alabama Paranormal Research Team in 2006 and together, they have investigated numerous haunted locations throughout the United States. The non-profit organization, based out of Alabama, investigates all aspects of the paranormal from, ghosts and spiritual phenomenon, to UFO and Cryptid sightings.
Faith began writing about historically haunted places in 2009 and was published in 2010 in the Haunted America Series. Faith’s books include:
Haunted Auburn and Opelika,
Haunted Columbus Georgia – Phantom’s of the Fountain City,
Haunted Montgomery Alabama and her new release (2014) for the Wicked Series, “Wicked Phenix City Alabama”.
In 2012, Faith was asked to film an episode of A&E’s, “My Ghost Story” based on paranormal experiences at the National Civil War Naval Museum in Columbus, Georgia. Her recent televisions involvement will be featured in the spring of 2014 for the new paranormal show, “Believers”, airing on the weather channel.
Faith’s photo and freelance work, based on haunted locations, has been featured in numerous magazines and books throughout Alabama. Her blog site features interviews and information from paranormal celebrities and unusual history to eye witness accounts of paranormal sightings and phenomenon. You can visit her sites here:
Brian Shirley is the founder and editor-in-chief for
Alien Bee Entertainment News, based in Birmingham, Alabama. The entertainment news site mainly focuses on horror and sci-fi movies and television news. Brian also does movie and television reviews and has interviewed over 200 celebrities over the years. Besides movies and television,
Alien Bee also covers video games, music, comic books, tech, art and cosplay.
Brian is also the creator of the popular creature feature comic book
Crocaloctopus that launched back in 2010 and is currently working on an
Alien Bee comic book as well as a few top secret projects featuring the popular Bee.
Brian has also worked on several indie horror and sci-fi films, most recently as producer for the horror-thriller
Intrusive Behavior, now making its rounds in the festival circuit and seeking distribution and the upcoming home invasion thriller
Open House that is currently in pre-production.
Paige Gardner Smith
Paige is an award-winning costumer who regularly appears at science fiction and fantasy conventions around the Eastern U.S. to teach easy costuming methods. While Paige has created recognizable cosplay from the Sci-Fi universe, she is mostly recognized for her steampunk masks, gear and costumes that are constructed from found, salvaged or vintage items.
As a costumer who doesn’t sew, Paige is a popular guest and presenter at costuming events – mostly because she quick to lift up her skirt…to show the safety pins and fabric tape that hold it together.
Paige’s costuming work has appeared in newspapers, magazines, television and independent film as well as being featured in books, including
1000 Steampunk Creations, 1000 Cosplay Creations and
The Steampunk Users Guide (releasing in 2014). Her masks and gear have also been exhibited at various venues around the U.S.
You can also find Paige and her costume work at CostumeArt on Facebook and @CostumeArt on Twitter and her blog at
Unfortunately NOT the comic artist, or the British fashion designer, or even the late, great father of ASCII, this Paul Smith is the internationally famous (?) co-host of the more-or-less weekly
Gobbledygeek pop culture podcast. He has, at one time or another, been a collector of comics, watcher of film, role player of games, petter of cats, and eater of pie. In his spare time he passionately (and unironically) defends movies other people hate, like I, ROBOT, SUCKER PUNCH, and yes, JOHN CARTER. In his day job, he trains dragons. Not even kidding.
Oh, and he almost never wears pants.
Amy Leigh Strickland
Amy Leigh Strickland was born Amy Leigh Albro on June 8, 1986 in a hospital in Nashua, NH. She was raised for eighteen years in Townsend, MA, participating in Drama Club, Girl Scouts, Art Club, Flight Student Literary Magazine, and the National Honors Society. Amy graduated as a Gold Award Girl Scout, as President of her school's chapter of the NHS, and received the Flag Award for citizenship.
After graduating High School, Amy enrolled in the Savannah College of Art and Design. Amy earned her BFA in Performing Arts at SCAD, and she starred in Sharon Ott's 2008 production of Oliver Twist as the title role. During this time, she also took advantage of her electives, studying writing, Shakespeare, and World Mythology. It was here that she met her future husband, Kyle Strickland.
In the summer of 2008, BFA in-hand, Amy returned to Townsend, MA to plan her wedding. She began writing her first novel while working retail and doing freelance web design work. On April 24, 2010, Amy married and became Amy Leigh Strickland. Days after returning from her honeymoon, Amy packed up and moved to Alabama.
Amy's first published novel, Olympia Heights: The Pantheon, was released in July of 2011. Its sequels,
Olympia Heights: The Weight of the World and
Olympia Heights: The Blood of Athens followed. In 2013, Strickland published
Rescue OR, Royer Goldhawk's Remarkable Journal, an American steampunk adventure novel. Its sequel is expected in 2014.
Strickland holds a Masters of Secondary Education (English Language Arts) from the University of Montevallo.
Carly is a digital illustrator and graphic designer based in Birmingham, Alabama, and her favorite word is
awesome. She is very small and probably has a complex about it. She prefers pet rats but supposes her step-cat will do. She’s art director of Matter Deep Publishing, an independent publishing company. She draws them a lot of pictures. So many pictures that she has published three children’s books since Matter Deep was launched in 2011 and has two more in the works. Carly does not believe that vampires sparkle in the sun, an opinion she has expressed in her illustrations in
Say No To Sparkles: an Illustrated Anthology, written by Kyle Strickland. Carly loves retro science fiction, Star Trek, sci-fi from the 60’s, cheesy fake rocks, and Star Trek. You can see more about her obsession in
Mothership Goose, a children’s book about nursery rhymes, jetpacks, and mouse mechanics.
Kyle Martin Strickland was born in Florida, raised in Alabama, and– owing to a serious mental
illness called love– spent a year living in Massachusetts during one of the iciest winters on
While attending The Savannah College of Art and Design, Kyle was President of the student club
Writer’s Block and worked an editorial internship at Crane Hill Publishing. He received his
in Professional Writing in 2008. Kyle writes for multiple web comics and has short fiction
published in An Alabama Christmas and A Florida Christmas, as well as his works of Bite-Sized
Fiction through Matter Deep. His illustrated anthology of short stories,
Say No to Sparkles, is
available now from Amazon.
AAs a child, Sir Kyle the Romantic, was always trying to rescue Princess Carly from the clutches
of evil. All-grown-up, Kyle now lives in a two bedroom palace outside Birmingham with his wife,
Amy, and their two fearless canines, Apollo and Linus. Linus is a beagle.
Ami has been experiencing paranormal phenomena for her entire life. Even before she could articulate what she was seeing, she was subject to spiritual visitation and visions. As she grew into adulthood, she began looking into the causes of these occurrences and entered the world of paranormal investigation. Visiting some of the South's most haunted locations, she is constantly seeking the answer of what connects this world to the next.
Ami has had the opportunity to work with some of the industry's most renowned investigators, such as Keith Age, Scott Tepperman, Ashley Godwin, and Dustin Pari. She has also worked with the Hollywood Ghost Hunters, which features some of horror's most prominent figures such as Kane "Jason" Hodder, R.A. "Leatherface" Mihailoff, and Rick McCallum. She is currently a member of the Celebrity Ghost Hunters with her husband, actor Daniel Emery Taylor, and friend, actor Jim O'Rear. CGH also features Tommy Golden, Paul Browning, and several others from the entertainment industry.
When not chasing down rogue spirits, Ami is a devoted mother of four and works in pit bull rescue.
I write comics and fanfiction, and I also draw and paint for artwork originals and prints.
And yes, I'm only 17. (And my dad collects swords, sharp, dangerous ones, so back off, pervs.)
I'm currently working on a new, full-length Grace the Amazing story to continue Grace's ongoing adventures as a cat-girl. I'm also writing another book, called
Kimono Dragon, based on a character I created for a cosplay.
I love anime and manga, and also enjoy watching horror movies and Japanese ghost stories. I'm a big fan of cosplay and have done it for a few years. I've done Kimono Dragon, my cat-girl costume, and even Fishnet Angel, which was the first superhero comic my dad ever wrote. As far as I know, I'm the only person who has ever cosplayed Fishnet Angel.
If you'd like to contact me about a project please email me at:
Daniel Emery Taylor
Daniel is best known as "Darryl" from the 1988 sci-fi cult classic
THE RETURN OF SWAMP THING. The sequel to Wes Craven's original film finds the DC superhero again battling the evil Dr. Arcane (Louis Jourdan) and vying for the affection of Arcane's stepdaughter Abigail (Heather Locklear). Darryl and his friend Omar constantly find themselves in trouble. Luckily, Swampy has a tendency of saving the day!
From there, Daniel did several television appearances (including
IN THE HEAT OF THE NIGHT and the critically acclaimed
I'LL FLY AWAY)before finding himself in the 2000 Dreamworks comedy
ROAD TRIP alongside comedy stars Tom Green and Ethan Suplee. More recently, he has become quite prolific in the realm of independent horror and has worked with many of the genre greats. Recent co-stars include Ari Lehman, John Dugan, Jim O'Rear, Tiffany Shepis, Robert Z'Dar, Robert Englund, and Danielle Harris.
Branching out into the world of paranormal investigation, Daniel has done many investigations at some of the South's most haunted locations. His initial exposure to the world of the paranormal came when he was invited to be a guest investigator with the Hollywood Ghost Hunters (Kane Hodder, Rick McCallum, Steve Nappe) during their investigation of the notorious Sloss Furnaces. Daniel has since worked with the SyFy Channel's Keith Age, Scott Tepperman, Ashley Godwin, and Dustin Pari. In 2011, Daniel became a member of the Celebrity Ghost Hunters, alongside friend and veteran horror actor Jim O'Rear. CGH also boasts members such as J LaRose (SAW III), Dick Warlock (Michael Myers from HALLOWEEN II), Gunnar Hansen (the original Leatherface), and Ogre (frontman for Skinny Puppy).
Daniel continues to work diligently, remaining active in all facets of entertainment. Along with his acting and paranormal investigating, he has recently entered the world of screenwriting and directing. His films
FAT CHANCE and THE HOSPITAL (co-written and co-directed with Jim O'Rear) will be soon unleashed upon the world. 2012 will also see the release of
NIGHT OF THE CANNIBALS as well as the filming of several other projects.
And if this wasn't enough, Daniel recently released a book written by his wild hillbilly alter-ego Taint titled
THINGS THAT PISS ME OFF.
Sean Taylor is an award-winning writer of stories. He grew up telling lies, and he got pretty good at it, so now he writes them into full-blown adventures for comic books, graphic novels, magazines, book anthologies and novels. He makes stuff up for money, and he writes it down for fun. He’s a lucky fellow that way.
He’s best known for his work on the best-selling Gene Simmons Dominatrix comic book series from
IDW Publishing and Simmons Comics Group. He has also written comics for TV properties such as the top-rated
Oxygen Network series The Bad Girls Club. His other forays into fiction include such realms as steampunk, pulp, young adult, fantasy, super heroes, sci-fi, and even samurai frogs on horseback (seriously, don’t laugh). However, his favorite contribution to the world will be as the writer/editor who invented the genre and coined the term "Hookerpunk."
For more information (and mug shots) visit
and his writer's b log at
Pepper Thorn lives in the Deep South with her husband and three cats. In college she discovered that she had the exact opposite personality of the average school teacher so she became one. Now she teaches bright elementary students, runs book clubs for advanced readers, and writes stories she wants to read. In her spare time she knits, watches science fiction and fantasy shows and movies, plays games, and hangs out with a wide variety of geeky friends.
Tanya Vandesteeg’s journey into the paranormal began at a young age when her family moved frequently and she soon found interest in searching out the local haunted legends. This hobby quickly turned into a serious passion as she continued to search and explore for answers to the unknown. Tanya is now an avid paranormal investigator and has over 15 years of experience throughout the states of TX, FL and TN. Her specialties are in the areas of electronic voice phenomenon (EVP), scientific debunking, research and case management. Tanya is currently the co-founder, lead investigator and event manager of the paranormal investigative group
Expedition Unknown and Memphis regional TAPS family member. She is also host of the
Expedition Unknown Radio Show featured LIVE on the award winning online station TMVcafe.com.
But don’t let her night time job fool you, Tanya has an incredible love for the arts and is a trained actress, vocal performer, stunt chick, spokes model, and aerialist. She is currently a workshop acting coach at
Indie Acting Studio and has made her career working shows throughout FL & CA for companies such as
Disney World, Universal, Sea World and Odien Inc. Tanya was the host of the ecological tourism show
Eco Weekends, did voice over work for ESPN Radio and has appeared on several TV shows. She is currently working on several film & television projects including the upcoming movie:
The Coming Darkness (A Star Wars fan film) and recently finished filming the movies:
No More Sorrow 3: Whispers in the Dark and
Curse of The Rougarou.
M. B. Weston
B. Weston is an award-winning fantasy, young adult, steampunk,
and paranormal author.
The Elysian Chronicles, , her fantasy series about guardian angel
warfare and treason, has been referred to as, “…filling a big part of the void that will be left by the final Harry Potter,” by award-winning author, Vincent O’Neil. Weston’s writing attracts both fantasy and non-fantasy readers, and her audience ranges from upper-elementary students to adults. Weston’s first paranormal thriller, Unleashed (working title), is slated for release in Summer 2014. Also in Winter 2013, two of her short stories were featured in both a paranormal and a Steam Punk anthology.
Weston is also a radio talk show host for The Final Cut in Movies, which airs on tmvcafe.com. A gifted orator, Weston has been invited as a guest speaker to numerous writing and science fiction/fantasy panels at conventions across the US, including DragonCon, BabelCon, NecronomiCon, and ImagiCon. She has served on panels with such authors as Sherrilyn Kenyon, J. F. Lewis, Todd McCaffrey, and Jonathan Maberry. Weston has spoken to thousands of students and adults about the craft of writing and has been invited as the keynote speaker at youth camps and at several schools throughout the US.
Lin Workman is the creator of the webcomic/geek travel blog
Have Geek Will Travel, the webcomic
Scared Silly, and is co-creator of the self-published comic book series
Bushi Tales, with Pencil Neck Studios partner Dave Beaty. Lin has been an artist and screen printer in the t-shirt industry for over 25 years and was a graphic artist designing monuments (including tombstones and grave markers) for five years. He has contributed his talents to the following comics, novels and card sets: sketch cards for The Empire Strikes Back 3-D Widevision, Star Wars Galaxy 6 and 7, Star Wars Galactic Files, Star Wars Chrome, 501st’s Star Wars Celebration VI, Mars Attacks, Transformers, and DC Women of Legend trading card series, Conquest Studio’s comic book
Mid-South Cartoonists’ Association’s comic anthologies
It Came From Beneath the Drawing Board and
Overdrawn and Underwritten,
Comic Geek Speak’s
CGS: The End comic book, The Wake-Up Crew’s webcomic for Rock103 in Memphis, and Christa Michaels’ book
Ramblings with Redde: Why Does My Life Seem Like a Bad “B” Flick?. Lin has done several one man art shows around Memphis, and is a member of the Mid-South Cartoonists Association and DeSoto Artists Council. His wife Nicki is his webmaster and has her own blog site FangirlWednesday.com.
David, a former resident of Birmingham, is an author and award-winning video producer from Georgia. He’s a lifelong fan of
The Avengers and has contributed to Van Plexico’s famed AvengersAssembled.net website. Associated with that, his first published writing was a contributing chapter to Plexico’s
ASSEMBLED!, a book of Avengers commentary and analysis.
Two of David’s stories appear in Van Allen Plexico’s
The Sentinels: Alternate Visions (White Rocket Books) with another story in
Gideon Cain: Demon Hunter (White Rocket Books). In February 2014, his latest story appeared in the
Hero’s Best Friend anthology from Seventh Star Press. This story also marks the debut of the fantasy setting David has created for an upcoming series of novels. The first novel,
My Brother’s Keeper, is due out at the end of 2014.