Author Biographies

Andrew Nagorski
Andrew Nagorski
Andrew Nagorski, who was born in Scotland to Polish parents, moved to the United States as an infant and has rarely stopped moving since. He is an award-winning journalist and author who spent more than three decades as a foreign correspondent and editor for Newsweek. He served as the magazine’s bureau chief in Hong Kong, Moscow, Rome, Bonn, Berlin and Warsaw. Nagorski now lives in St. Augustine, Florida but continues to travel extensively, writing for numerous publications. He is the author of six books, including The Greatest Battle and Hitlerland. His most recently released book The Nazi Hunters (Simon and Schuster) has received rave reviews from The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post and numerous other publications. For more information, see www.andrewnagorski.com
Ann Taylor
Ann Taylor
Ann Kidd Taylor is the coauthor of the New York Times bestselling memoir Traveling with Pomegranates. Taylor is a graduate of Columbia College in South Carolina. She currently lives in southwest Florida with her husband and son.
Christopher Tozier
Christopher Tozier
Christopher Tozier lives in an unnamed scrub forest north of Orlando and is the author of the award-winning Olivia Brophie series for children. His first novel, Olivia Brophie and the Pearl of Tagelus, is widely taught in schools. The Sky Island followed, and in March 2017, Aristotle's Lantern was released. World’s Around Us is the free curriculum developed by scientists and educators around the country for use with the series. He was also selected as a 2011 Individual Artist Fellow by the State of Florida. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison Creative Writing and English program where he served as Poetry Editor of The Madison Review.
Rich Wickliffe
Rich Wickliffe
Rich Wickliffe has been a South Florida resident since 1976. His crime-thriller, “Storm Crashers” was originally optioned by a major film studio. Rich’s first novel “Tropical Windfall,” set in Key West, was published as a result of an Amazon crime-writing competition and still remains a fan favorite. Rich is also published in business journals in the investigative fields. Rich enjoys speaking about creative crimes, including twice at the FBI’s InfraGard Counterterrorism conferences and on panels at seminars in Las Vegas dedicated to accuracy in crime writing. He has now finished a new manuscript about Miami Russian mafia, based on a true-crime article he’d published. From the other side of his brain, Rich's art and photography have been seen in print, in Forbes Travel magazine and exhibited in Ft. Lauderdale's Art Guild. Rich’s material borrows from the unique (scandalous, criminal or satirical) environments of South Florida where he resides with his wife and family. Please “Like” Rich Wickliffe’s Author Page on Facebook or visit RichWickliffe.com to see more.
Dr. Mary Custureri
Dr. Mary Custureri
Dr. Mary Custureri is the founder of Taylor and Seale, a traditional publisher featuring quality fiction and non-fiction for readers around the globe. Founded in 2011, it deals with multi-media educational products, novels and non-fiction. Dr. Mary Custureri has experience working with students from every academic level, the latest of which was full-time university for twelve years. She is recognized for her creation of an award-winning Strategies program and writes books which explain and use her strategies to learn and to teach. A member of the "Who's Who of American Women" and "Who's Who in American Education" societies, she has been the recipient of numerous grants and awards for her teaching excellence. Her writing experience is varied -- from newspaper columns, pamphlets, booklets for students and parents, teacher manuals and student self-help books. Some of Dr. Custureri's published works a Instructional Strategies: Helping all Students Succeed (A Manual for Teachers and Administrators); Help Yourself Learn in Ten Easy Steps; The Happy Anderson Series of children's books (so far 4 published and 20 more in the planning stage; a published doctoral dissertation "Read a Book in an Hour: A Wholistic Reading." (Florida Atlantic University, 1989) and a historical novel under her maiden name.
Elizabeth Randall
Elizabeth Randall
Elizabeth Randall comes from a family of investigative reporters and journalists. Her grandfather was the dean of city police reporters for the New York Daily Mirror back in the 40s and 50s and her father was the in-house editor of the IBM news journal during the 60s. Following in their footsteps, Elizabeth is a widely published free-lance writer most recently covering the Woman’s March for Orlando Weekly and the NRA conference and protest in Atlanta for Creative Loafing. She was also the sole journalist to conduct a series of published interviews with convicted murderer Troy Victorino of the notorious X-Box murders in Deltona, Florida. Elizabeth is also the author of four non-fiction books, including her most recent, Murder in St. Augustine, the true crime book about the 43 year old “unsolved” murder of Athalia Ponsell Lindsley. The process of writing the book involved the synthesis of over a thousand pages of evidence from the 1970s, including police and commission reports, depositions, letters, wills, and personal interviews. Her research included extensive travel not only toSt. Augustine, but to Northampton, Massachusetts and Charleston, South Carolina. In the end, Elizabeth is certain she presented enough evidence to effectively lay to rest the speculation about the identity of Athalia’s murderer. Elizabeth lives in Lake Mary, Florida with her husband, Bob, a photographer who takes most of the photographs for her books. She teaches English for Seminole County public schools, enjoys kayaking, running, and spending time with her family which includes children, grandchildren, and a new great granddaughter.
Cassie Dandridge Selleck
Cassie Dandridge Selleck
Cassie Dandridge Selleck is a novelist and creator of the hybrid publishing company Obstinate Daughters Press. Selleck’s self-published first novel The Pecan Man ranks as a best-seller on Amazon.com. Movie rights have been optioned by BCDF Pictures, and the novel has been traditionally published for audio, translated into two foreign languages, and was selected by the State of Arkansas for their 2017 common reader program “If All Arkansas Read the Same Book.” Selleck’s second novel What Matters in Mayhew was published by Obstinate Daughters Press in October 2016, and will be available on audio from Blackstone in July 2017. Selleck is a native Floridian and makes her home on the Suwannee River in Mayo, Florida. She holds a BFA in Creative Writing from Goddard College in Plainfield, Vermont.
Marisa Carbone Finotti
Marisa Carbone Finotti
M.C. Finotti is the author of The Treasure of Amelia Island, a middle grade novel of historic fiction also published by Pineapple Press and set in Spanish Florida in 1813. It tells the story of Ana Jai Kingsley and her children and it won the Florida Historical Society’s James J. Horgan Award. Finotti lives in Atlantic Beach, FL with her husband and two children.
Marty Jourard
Marty Jourard
Marty Jourard was born in Atlanta and grew up in Gainesville, Florida where he performed in various rock bands before moving to Los Angeles in 1976. He played keyboard and sax for The Motels from 1979 to 1986, which earned him two gold albums and two Top Ten singles ("Only the Lonely," "Suddenly Last Summer"). He lives in Seattle and is the author of three books: Start Your Own Band (Hyperion 1996), The Marty Method (2004) and Music Everywhere: The Rock and Roll Roots of a Southern Town (University Press of Florida 2016). Since 2011 he has rejoined the Motels and is currently recording and touring with the group.
Larry Baker
Larry Baker
Larry Baker’s wife would insist that the use of “career” in conjunction with his life is a bit misleading. Admitting that, however, Larry would still insist that he has done a few things in his life that might constitute real work. He is currently an adjunct instructor of American History at Kirkwood Community College in Cedar Rapids. With a PhD in English, he began teaching composition and literature on the college level in 1988, but he soon discovered that he was an overly critical comp teacher and an overly opinionated lit teacher. Thus, he went back to graduate school and earned post-doctorate credit in history, being certified to teach basic American History courses at the community college level. He was very happy. He is known for entertaining and enlightening lectures, and he is an easy grader. Students love him. Most students do. At least, many. Prior to getting his PhD in 1986, Larry was, in no particular order in a list not meant to be comprehensive: a Pizza Hut manager, Pinkerton security guard, emcee at a strip club, ad salesman, sports reporter, and hotel desk clerk. Most importantly, he owned and operated movie theatres throughout Oklahoma and Texas for fifteen years. After moving to Iowa City in 1980 to finish his PhD, Larry was soon involved in local politics. He was elected twice (yes, people voted for him) to the City Council. From that experience came his second novel, ATHENS/AMERICA (2005), a book that managed to agitate the dots of many people in Iowa City. Shortly after ATHENS was published, Larry ran for another term on the Council. He came in fifth. Although he had been publishing short stories since he was a teenager, he was fifty before his first novel, THE FLAMINGO RISING (Knopf-1997), was published. FLAMINGO was one of three finalists for the Barnes and Noble “Great New Voices” award for 1997, a Los Angeles Times “Top 100” book for 1997, and chosen by the Iowa Center for the Book to represent Iowa at the 2010 National Book Festival in Washington. It was also adapted for a Hallmark tv movie in 2001. With those pro-family credentials established, FLAMINGO was also included on the American Library Association’s “Banned Books” list for 2011. His third novel, A GOOD MAN (2009), was nominated for “Book of the Year” by the Southeast Independent Booksellers Association in 2010. His fourth novel, LOVE AND OTHER DELUSIONS (2012), was a dramatic departure for Baker in style and theme. As he says, "This is definitely not Hallmark material." His fifth novel, THE EDUCATION OF NANCY ADAMS, was released in April of 2014. Early buzz about that book was enough to get Larry selected as the “Writer on Tour” by the Florida Literary Arts Council. He was hosted by a lot of Florida colleges in the Fall of 2014 and Spring of 2015. His latest novel, FROM A DISTANCE, will be released in September of 2017. Imagine a combination of THE LOVELY BONES and PRINCE OF TIDES. Larry was included on the Iowa Literary Walk of Fame in 2010; joining other writers such as John Irving, Marilynne Robinson, Kurt Vonnegut, and Flannery O’Connor, et al.
Kent Wascom
Kent Wascom
Kent Wascom was born in New Orleans and grew up in Pensacola, Florida. His first novel, The Blood of Heaven, was named a best book of the year by the Washington Post and NPR. It was a semifinalist for the VCU Cabell First Novelist Award and longlisted for the Flaherty-Dunnan Award for First Fiction. Wascom was awarded the 2012 Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival Prize for Fiction and selected as one of Gambit's 40 Under 40. He lives in Louisiana.
Robert L. Gold
Robert L. Gold
Robert L. Gold, Ph.D. is a retired professor of Latin American history, who has served on the teaching staff of several universities including the University of South Florida. His historical research and writing has been primarily focused on St. Augustine and Spanish Florida. Before his academic career, he served as the first state historian in St. Augustine and after retirement, as the executive director of the Historic St. Augustine Preservation Board. In the 1980s, he wrote a history column in the St. Augustine Record, entitled, Essays from El Dorado, and, early in 2017, he has written, St. Augustine: A Brief History of America's Oldest City. Dr. Gold is currently completing a three-book Colonial City Mystery Series, including Dead to Rights, set in Savannah, Cut of the Cross, set in St. Augustine, and Dead and Gone, set in New Orleans. The first two historical mysteries are already published and the third is scheduled to be printed early this summer.
Steph Post
Steph Post
Steph Post is the author of the novels Lightwood and A Tree Born Crooked and her short fiction has most recently appeared in Haunted Waters: From the Depths, Nonbinary Review and the anthology Stephen King’s Contemporary Classics. She has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, a Rhysling Award and was a semi-finalist for The Big Moose Prize. She is currently the writing coach at Howard W. Blake High School in Tampa, Florida.
Tim Dorsey
Tim Dorsey
Tim Dorsey was born in Indiana, moved to Florida at the age of 1, and grew up in a small town about an hour north of Miami called Riviera Beach. He graduated from Auburn University in 1983. While at Auburn, he was editor of the student newspaper, The Plainsman. From 1983 to 1987, he was a police and courts reporter for The Alabama Journal, the now-defunct evening newspaper in Montgomery. He joined The Tampa Tribune in 1987 as a general assignment reporter. He also worked as a political reporter in the Tribune’s Tallahassee bureau and a copy desk editor. From 1994 to 1999, he was the Tribune’s night metro editor. He left the paper in August 1999 to write full time. Tim has since published twenty novels in several languages: Florida Roadkill, Hammerhead Ranch Motel, Orange Crush, Triggerfish Twist, The Stingray Shuffle, Cadillac Beach, Torpedo Juice, The Big Bamboo, Hurricane Punch, Atomic Lobster, Nuclear Jellyfish, Gator A-Go-Go, Electric Barracuda, When Elves Attack, Pineapple Grenade, The Riptide Ultra-Glide, Tiger Shrimp Tango, Shark Skin Suite, Coconut Cowboy and Clownfish Blues. He lives in Tampa.
Karen Brown
Karen Brown
Karen Brown is the author of two novels, The Clairvoyants, and The Longings of Wayward Girls, and two short story collections—Little Sinners and Other Stories, which won the Prairie Schooner Book Prize, the John Gardner Book Award, and was named a Best Book of 2012 by Publisher's Weekly, and Pins and Needles: Stories, the recipient of AWP’s Grace Paley Prize for Short Fiction. Her work has appeared in The O. Henry Prize Stories, Best American Short Stories, The New York Times, and Good Housekeeping, and in many literary magazines, most recently The Kenyon Review, Glimmer Train, andEpoch. She teaches creative writing and literature at the University of South Florida.
Janice Hardy
Janice Hardy
Janice Hardy is the award-winning author of The Healing Wars trilogy, including The Shifter, Blue Fire, and Darkfall from Balzer+Bray/Harper Collins. She's also the author of multiple books on writing, including the bestselling Understanding Show, Don't Tell (And Really Getting It), Planning Your Novel: Ideas and Structure, and Revising Your Novel: First Draft to Finished Draft. She lives in Central Florida with her husband, one yard zombie, two cats, and a very nervous freshwater eel. Find out more at Fiction University, where she shares advice to help writers improve their craft and navigate the crazy world of publishing.
Michael Butler
Michael Butler
Dr. J. Michael Butler is Professor of History at Flagler College in St. Augustine, where he has taught since August 2008. He received both his Masters and Doctorate in History from the University of Mississippi, where he specialized in 20th century Southern history with an emphasis on the civil rights movement. Dr. Butler has over forty credited publications including his latest book, which is titled Beyond Integration: The Black Freedom Struggle in Escambia County, Florida, 1960-1980. Beyond Integration, which the University of North Carolina Press published last year, won the 2016 Florida Book Award Silver Medal in the General Non-Fiction category.
Andrew Frank
Andrew Frank
Andrew Frank is the Allen Morris Associate Professor of History at Florida State University. He is the author of Creeks and Southerners: Biculturalism on the Early American Frontier as well as numerous other books and articles on the history of Florida and the southeastern Indians. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Florida. His book, Before the Pioneers, is the first in a new series from the University Press of Florida called "Florida In Focus," which aims to make microhistory more widely available to the general public.
Bob H. Lee
Bob H. Lee
Bob H. Lee is a former lieutenant and thirty-year veteran of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC). During his career, he caught hundreds of poachers in the act and through complex wildlife investigations. Prior to his retirement in 2007, he taught man-tracking classes through the FWC Law Enforcement Academy. He also writes freelance articles for law enforcement and outdoor magazines. He lives with his wife, Karen, on eighteen acres next to a secluded lake in south Putnam County. Bad Guys, Bullets, and Boat Chases ​(University Press of Florida) is his second book.
Peggy A. Bulger
Peggy A. Bulger
Peggy A. Bulger retired in 2012 as the second director of the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress, where she served from 1999. A native of New York State, she holds a B.A. in fine arts from the State University of New York at Albany, an M.A. in folk studies from Western Kentucky University, and a Ph.D. in folklore and folklife from the University of Pennsylvania. A folklorist, consultant, and producer, Bulger has been documenting folklife and developing and managing folklife programs for more than forty years. Prior to her tenure at the American Folklife Center, she served as Florida Folklife Programs Administrator for the State of Florida (1976–1988) and Folk Arts Senior Officer for the Southern Arts Federation in Atlanta, GA (1989-99). Peggy Bulger is the author of Stetson Kennedy: Applied Folklore & Cultural Advocacy (2017); South Florida Folklife, with Tina Bucuvalas and Stetson Kennedy, (1994); and the editor of Musical Roots of the South (1992). She is the producer of many documentary films, including Music Masters & Rhythm Kings (1993), Every Island Has Its Own Songs: The Tsimouris Family of Tarpon Springs (1988), Fishing All My Days: Maritime Traditions of Florida’s Shrimpers (1985); and a number of recordings, including Deep South Musical Roots Tour (1992) and Drop On Down in Florida (1981). Dr. Bulger has been active in professional and academic societies. She served on the board of the American Folklore Society (AFS) (1995-1999) and then as its President (2000-2002). She was elected as a Folklore Fellow of the AFS in 2011 and received the Benjamin Botkin Award that same year for her contributions to the field of public folklore. Upon retirement, Bulger returned to Florida and currently she is a member of the Florida Folklife Council, President of the Florida Folklore Society, as well as board member of the National Council for Traditional Arts. In August, 2012, Dr. Bulger received an honorary doctorate of humane letters from Goucher College, where she was commencement speaker for graduate programs. Also in 2012 Bulger was honored by the Stetson Kennedy Foundation with the Fellow Man & Mother Earth Award for her contributions to Florida folklore. She was awarded the 2017 Carolyn P. Rossiter Award for Outstanding Woman in Florida History by the Florida Historical Society.
James O. Born
James O. Born
James O. Born is a graduate of Florida State University and received a Master’s degree from the University of Southern Mississippi in Psychology. He started his career in police work as a US Drug Agent (DEA) and was part of the late 1990’s Miami drug war. He then moved on to become a Special Agent with the elite Florida Department of Law Enforcement. During his law enforcement career, Born received the Law Enforcement Officer of the Year award from the US Attorney’s Office, the Silver Medal of Valor, The Distinguished Service Award and the Life Saving Medal after rescuing a family from a SUV, which had plunged into a canal. Born has delivered talks to a number professional writing organizations as well as taught writing at conferences across the country. He has written articles for magazines and newspapers. He was chosen as one of Florida’s 21 most intriguing people by Florida Monthly Magazine. In 2004, Putnam published his first novel, Walking Money, which was a finalist for the Barry Award. The darkly comic series continued with Escape Clause, which won the gold medal in the inaugural Florida Book Award in 2007. 2009, Born published the first of several thrillers under the pseudonym James O’Neal. The first novel, titled The Human Disguise and the sequel, The Double Human received critical praise with Publisher’s Weekly calling them, “Wildly entertaining.” In 2014, Born coauthored the popular Border War with TV commentator Lou Dobbs. In 2016, Born started as a cowriter with James Patterson. The 2017 releases were both in the top five mystery books for sales.
Andre Frattino
Andre Frattino
Andre Frattino is a native of Florida, who balances his skills and trade across three areas: Storytelling, Education and the Paranormal. Since 2012, Andre has been publishing his ongoing Florida-based graphic novel series with Pineapple Press (to this date, Andre is the first and only graphic novelist published by the veteran publishers) which include the titles: The Reaper of St. George Street, Lost Souls of Savannah and most recently, The Vampirate of Matanzas Inlet. Andre is a graduate of both Savannah College of Art and Design (BFA, Sequential Art, 2009) and the University of Florida (MA, Art Education, 2013). Andre continues to write and illustrate for comics and children's books and has worked for a number of other clients including Award-Winning Author Shelley Fraser Mickle, The Marjorie Rawling's Foundation and Firehouse Subs. When Andre is not hard at work on his next illustrative project, he can be found conducting ghost tours in Savannah, GA, where for the past 10 years, he's walked tourists through the darker parts of the city's history. His artwork can be found on his website.