Current Contributing Authors

Jennifer Bort Yacovissi

Jenny Yacovissi grew up in Bethesda, Maryland, just a bit farther up the hill from Washington, D.C. Her debut novel Up the Hill to Home is a fictionalized account of her mother’s family in Washington from the Civil War to the Great Depression. In addition to writing historical and contemporary literary fiction, Jenny reviews regularly for the Washington Independent Review of Books and the Historical Novel Society. She belongs to the National Book Critic’s Circle and PEN/America. She also owns a small project management and engineering consulting firm, and enjoys gardening and being on the water. Jenny lives with her husband Jim in Crownsville, Maryland. To learn more about the families in Up the Hill to Home and see photos and artifacts from their lives, visit

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Alexandra Burack

Alexandra Burack, M.F.A., is an obscure poet who’s taught and edited creative and scholarly writing (mostly as an adjunct college prof) for 40 years. She is the author of On the Verge (poetry chapbook; out of print), and her poems have appeared in some now-defunct literary magazines. She was the (uncredited) initiator and (credited) inaugural editor of the now-defunct Lumina Journal (Sarah Lawrence College MFA in Writing Program), and is a Pushcart Prize in Poetry nominee. Her poem, “Travel Guide,” was a winner in the 2021 Space2Create competition established to honor the historic all-civilian Inspiration4 space mission, and she was an invited poetry performer at the 2021 Phoenix Festival of the Arts. She has lived in New England, NY, Basel, and London, and currently resides in the metro Phoenix area, where she is: Founder & President of Writing Explorations, a private editing/writing/education consultancy; an active participant in the philanthropic art/acts of kindness global scavenger hunt, GISH; and an inveterate thorn in the side of the status quo.

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Todd Garth

Todd S. Garth teaches Spanish and Portuguese Language and Latin American and Spanish cultural studies at the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, where he was the first openly gay faculty member. He is the author of two critical studies of (long dead) Spanish American authors and an enthusiastic reader and commentator of fiction of all kinds. He is currently at work on a historical novel, The Mayor of Newark. 

Lily Iona MacKenzie

A Canadian by birth, a high school dropout, and a mother at 17, in my early years, I supported myself as a stock girl in the Hudson’s Bay Company, as a long-distance operator for the former Alberta Government Telephones, and as a secretary (Bechtel Corp sponsored me into the States). I also was a cocktail waitress at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco, briefly broke into the male-dominated world of the docks as a longshoreman (I was the first woman to work on the SF docks and almost got my legs broken), founded and managed a homeless shelter in Marin County, co-created The Story Shoppe, a weekly radio program for children that aired on KTIM in Marin County, CA, and eventually earned two Master’s degrees (one in creative writing and one in the humanities). I have published reviews, interviews, short fiction, poetry, travel pieces, essays, and memoir in over 165 American and Canadian venues. My novel Fling! was published in 2015. Curva Peligrosa, another novel, was published in September 2017. Freefall: A Divine Comedy was released in 2019. My poetry collection All This was published in 2011, and Prolific Press published my poetry chapbook No More Kings in March 2020. I blog at


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Gary Garth McCann

First-prize winner for short works and for suspense/mystery, Maryland Writers’ Association, Gary Garth McCann is the author of the  novella Young and in Love?  and of the novels The Shape of the Earth and The Man Who Asked To Be Killedpraised at the Washington Independent Review of Books. His most recent  published stories are available online in Chelsea Station Magazine, Erotic Review Magazine,  and in Mobius: The Journal of Social Change. His other stories appear in The Q Review, reprinted in Off the Rocks, in Best Gay Love Stories 2005, and in the Harrington Gay Men’s Fiction Quarterly.  See his blogs at and

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Eileen McIntire

Eileen has ridden a camel in the Moroccan Sahara, fished for piranhas on the Amazon, sailed in a felucca on the Nile, and lived for three years on a motorsailer, exploring the coast from Annapolis to Key West.  Eileen has many years experience writing, editing and designing all manner of publications for nonprofits and professional associations. She is now co-owner of Summit Crossroads Press, which publishes books for parents, and its fiction imprint, Amanita Books.  The inspiration for her 90s Club mystery series springs from meeting a slim, attractive woman at a pool party who was the only one actually in the pool swimming laps, and she was 91 years old. Since then, Eileen has collected articles about people in their 90s—and 100s—who are still active, alert and on the job. She often speaks at retirement villages on “Old Dogs, New Tricks.”

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Daniel Oliver

Daniel Oliver has bachelor’s degrees in both Spanish and Physician Assistant Studies. In writing his debut novel, The Long Road, he drew inspiration from his experience as a physician assistant in a psychiatry ward and his own struggles with mental illness and hospitalizations.

Oliver is a resident of Baltimore, Maryland, where he enjoys the single life–and the oysters.

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Peter Pollak

Author of 7 novels, Peter began writing seriously after retiring from careers as a journalist, educator and entrepreneur. Learn more at

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Garry Craig Powell

Garry Craig Powell, until 2017 professor of Creative Writing at the University of Central Arkansas, was educated at the universities of Cambridge, Durham, and Arizona. Living in the Persian Gulf and teaching on the women’s campus of the National University of the United Arab Emirates inspired him to write his story collection, Stoning the Devil (Skylight Press, 2012), which was longlisted for the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award and the Edge Hill Short Story Prize. His short fiction has appeared in Best American Mystery Stories 2009, McSweeney’s, Nimrod, New Orleans Review, and other literary magazines. Powell lives in northern Portugal and writes full-time. His novel, Our Parent Who Art in Heaven, was published by Flame Books in 2022, and is available from their website, Amazon, and all good bookshops.

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Sally Whitney

Sally Whitney is the author of When Enemies Offend Thee and Surface and Shadow, available now from Pen-L Publishing,, and When Enemies Offend Thee follows a sexual-assault victim who vows to get even on her own when her lack of evidence prevents police from charging the man who attacked her. Surface and Shadow is the story of a woman who risks her marriage and her husband’s career to find out what really happened in a wealthy man’s suspicious death.

Sally’s short stories have appeared in magazines and anthologies, including Best Short Stories from The Saturday Evening Post Great American Fiction Contest 2017, Main Street Rag, Kansas City Voices, Uncertain Promise, Voices from the Porch, New Lines from the Old Line State: An Anthology of Maryland Writers and Grow Old Along With Me—The Best Is Yet to Be, among others. The audio version of Grow Old Along With Me was a Grammy Award finalist in the Spoken Word or Nonmusical Album category. Sally’s stories have also been recognized as a finalist in The Ledge Fiction Competition and semi-finalists in the Syndicated Fiction Project and the Salem College National Literary Awards competition.


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Terra Ziporyn

TERRA ZIPORYN is an award-winning novelist, playwright, and science writer whose numerous popular health and medical publications include The New Harvard Guide to Women’s Health, Nameless Diseases, and Alternative Medicine for Dummies. Her novels include Do Not Go Gentle, The Bliss of Solitude, and Time’s Fool, which in 2008 was awarded first prize for historical fiction by the Maryland Writers Association. Terra has participated in both the Bread Loaf Writers Conference and the Old Chatham Writers Conference and for many years was a member of Theatre Building Chicago’s Writers Workshop (New Tuners).  A former associate editor of the Journal of the American Medical Association  (JAMA), she has a PhD in the history of science and medicine from the University of Chicago and a BA in both history and biology from Yale University, where she also studied playwriting with Ted Tally. Her latest novel, Permanent Makeupis available in paperback and as a Kindle Select Book.


Past Contributing Authors

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Sybil Baker

Sybil Baker’s most recent novel While You Were Gone was published in June 2018 by C&R Press. Immigration Essays, (C&R Press, 2017) will be The University of Tennessee’s Chattanooga’s Read2Achieve selection for 2018-2019. She is also the author of The Life Plan , Talismans, and Into This World . She is a UC Foundation Professor at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and teaches at the Yale Writer’s Workshop. She has received two Make Work Artist Grants and an Individual Artist Fellowship from the Tennessee Arts Commission.

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Joshua Braff

I grew up in South Orange, New Jersey, and went to Columbia High School. I graduated from NYU in ’91 with a BS in Education. In 1995 I entered St. Mary’s College of California. There I received an MFA in creative writing/fiction. I published three short stories during this time in national literary journals before I wrote a first novel called Digging Suburbia. I was never able to sell it but acquired my first literary agent with the book. I wrote The Unthinkable Thoughts of Jacob Green after my son turned 6 months old. The book would have three publishing offers right after I finished it two years later. I started writing Peep Show after hearing a story about a man who was an orthodox Jew, living in Long Island, who commuted to Times Square to run peep houses. The book turned out to be a complex ride about familial relationships and the tangles that disenchantment and history and self-absorption can cause. I live in California with my wife of almost 20 years and my two children, Henry and Ella. I love the game of baseball and played until I turned 40. I also love acrylic/oil painting in the Color Field genre. I’m most inspired by the painters, Barnett Newman, Dan Christensen, Kenneth Noland and Mark Rothko. I also play the guitar and drums.


  • An ALA Notable Book
  • Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers (2004)
  • Top 10 Booklist 1st Novels List

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Ron Cooper

Ron was born in the swampy Low Country of South Carolina. He received a BA in philosophy from the College of Charleston, an MA from the University of South Carolina, and a Ph.D. from Rutgers University. He moved to Florida in 1988 and since 1995 has taught at College of Central Florida in Ocala where he lives with his wife Sandra (also a CF faculty member) and their three children.

Ron is a past president of the Florida Philosophical Association, has published philosophical essays, and is the author of Heidegger and Whitehead: A Phenomenological Examination into the Intelligibility of Experience. His fiction has appeared in publications such as Sleipnir Literary Journal, Chattahootchee Review, American Book Review, Deep South MagazineYalobusha Review, Apostrophe, Timber Creek Review, and The Blotter. His novels Hume’s Fork, Purple Jesus and The Gospel of the Twin are available from Bancroft Press. His newest novel All My Sins Remembered was released by Goliad Press in March, 2018.

Ron is also a bluegrass enthusiast, and he challenges anyone to play and sing worse than he does.

Mary Doyle

M. L. Doyle has served in the U.S. Army at home and abroad for more than two decades as both a soldier and civilian. A Minneapolis native, Mary currently lives in Baltimore, Maryland. Mary is the author of  The Peacekeeper’s Photograph, and The Sapper’s Plot, (July 2013) the first and second books in the Master Sergeant Harper Mystery series. The third book in the series, THE GENERAL’S AMBITION, is slated for release on Nov. 1, 2014. Mary is the co-author of the memoir, I’m Still Standing: From Captive U.S. Soldier to Free Citizen—My Journey Home (Touchstone, 2010) and co-author of, A Promise Fulfilled, The story of a wife and mother, Soldier and General Officer (Jan. 20140). She  also released a series of adult romance novellas in the Limited Partnerships series (Sept. 2013) under the pen name Louise Kokesh. Mary has a bachelor of Arts in broadcast communications from Metropolitan State University and a Master of Arts from the University of Oklahoma in International Relations. Check out her website at

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Joseph D Haske

Joseph D. Haske is a writer, critic and scholar, whose debut novel, North Dixie Highway, was released in October 2013. His fiction appears in journals such as Boulevard, Fiction International, the Texas Review, the Four-Way Review, Pleiades, and in the Chicago Tribune‘s literary supplement, Printers Row. His poetry and fiction are also featured in various anthologies as well as in French, Romanian and Canadian publications. Haske edits various literary venues, including Sleipnir and American Book Review. He is professor of English at South Texas College.

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Sonia Linebaugh

Sonia L. Linebaugh is a freelance writer and artist. Her book At the Feet of Mother Meera: The Lessons of Silence goes straight to the heart of the Westerner’s dilemma: How can we live fully as both spiritual and material beings? Sonia has written three novels and numerous  short stories. She’s a past president of Maryland Writers Association, and past editor of MWA’s Pen in Hand. Her recent artist’s book is “Where Did I Think I Was Going?,” a metaphorical journey in evocative images and text.

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Jill Morrow

Jill Morrow is the author of ANGEL CAFE (Simon & Schuster 2003) and THE OPEN CHANNEL (Simon & Schuster 2005). Her next novel, NEWPORT (HarperCollins/WilliamMorrow), will be published in summer of 2015. Jill has enjoyed a broad spectrum of careers and opportunities, from practicing law to singing with local bands.  She lives in Baltimore, Maryland.

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Hannah Rials

Hannah Rials is a Maryville native and Masters student at Bath Spa University’s MA in Writing for Young People. Hannah began writing her first novel at age twelve. Eight years later, the result is debut YA novel Ascension, winner of  the Gold Award in Young Adult New Voice from the Independent Book Publishers Association  (IBPA) prestigious Benjamin Franklin Awards. A second novel, Clandestine, now follows Ascension in the series. When not writing all the time or devouring as many books as possible, she works at Mr. B’s Emporium of Reading Delights, explores the UK and Europe, bakes, and pets all the dogs.

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Michael J. Tucker

Growing up in the cold northern climate of Pittsburgh, PA, and an only child, Mike was often trapped indoors and left to his own devices, where he would create space ships out of cardboard boxes, convert his mother’s ironing board into a horse and put on his Sunday suit and tie and his father’s fedora and become a newspaper reporter or police detective. This experience left him with an unlimited imagination and the ability to write electrifying short stories and novels.

Mike is the author of two critically acclaimed novels, Aquarius Falling and Capricorn’s Collapse. He has also published a collection of short stories entitled, The New Neighbor, and a poetry collection; Your Voice Spoke To My Ear. His poem, The Coyote’s Den, was included in the Civil War Anthology, Filtered Through Time.

He is a judge for the Janice Keck Literary Award, and the moderator of the Williamson County Library Writers’ Critique Group.

Reviewers of Mike’s novels have compared his writing to: Thomas Wolfe’s I Am Charlotte Simmons, and J. D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye. Albert Beckus, Professor Emeritus of Literature at Austin Peay University recently wrote of his novels: “They move naturalistically in the American literary tradition of Theodore Dreiser’s An American Tragedy, but with a twist…as found in The Great Gatsby.”


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Reed Waller

Reed Vernon Waller was a winner in the short fiction contest for the Saints and Sinners Festival 2018 Anthology, and currently has two novels in progress, Trudy and Elliot and the Wondrous Merge, and Division of Magical Verification, Book 1: Who Transfigured Dirk DeLuxe?. He holds a masters degree in arts management from American University.

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Janet Willen


Janet Willen is author of Speak a Word for Freedom: Women against Slavery (2015) and Five Thousand Years of Slavery (2011), written with Marjorie Gann and published by Tundra Books. Publishers Weekly called Speak a Word for Freedom an “engrossing study of female abolitionists from the 18th century to the present day” and gave the book a starred review. Five Thousand Years of Slavery was named a 2012 Notable Book for a Global Society by the International Reading Association and a Silver Winner in young adult nonfiction of ForeWord Reviews, and it received a starred review from School Library Journal. A writer and editor for more than thirty years, Janet has written many magazine articles and has edited books for elementary school children as well as academic texts and a remedial writing curriculum for postsecondary students.  Janet lives in Silver Spring, Maryland.

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Mark Willen

Mark Willen’s novels, Hawke’s Point, Hawke’s Return, and Hawke’s Discoverywere released by Pen-L Publishing.  His short stories have appeared in Corner Club Press, The Rusty Nail. and The Boiler Review. Mark is currently working on his second novel, a thriller set in a fictional town in central Maryland. Mark also writes a blog on practical, everyday ethics, Talking