Nonfiction: 2016

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    Prudence Farrow Bruns

    Prudence Farrow is the daughter of actress Maureen O’Sullivan and director/writer John Farrow. Prudence began an early interest in meditation and yoga in 1966 when at the age of 18 she started Transcendental Meditation in Los Angeles and then went on to New York to study yoga with Swami Satchidananda, eventually opening and running his Integral Yoga Institute in Boston. In 1968 she went to Rishikesh, India, to study to become a teacher of Transcendental Meditation with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. It was at this meditation course that she met the Beatles and John Lennon wrote the song “Dear Prudence” about her. In 1970 she would return to Rishikesh for further studies in meditation with Maharishi.  Prudence published her memoir Dear Prudence, The Story Behind the Song in July 2015. Kirkus Review has named this book one of the best Indie books of 2015. She lives with her husband in Seagrove Beach, Florida. They have three children and four grandchildren.

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    James M. Denham

    James M. Denham is Professor of History and Director of the Lawton M. Chiles Jr. Center for Florida History at Florida Southern College. He is the author of A Rogue’s Paradise: Crime and Punishment in Antebellum Florida, 1821–1861, and coauthor of Florida Sheriffs: A History, 1821–1945, as well as two University of South Carolina Press books—Cracker Times and Pioneer Lives: The Florida Reminiscences of George Gillette Keen and Sarah Pamela Williams and Echoes from a Distant Frontier: The Brown Sisters’ Correspondence in Antebellum Florida. A specialist in Southern, Florida, and Criminal Justice and Legal history, Denham received his Ph.D degree from FSU. Denham has also served fellowships at the U. S. Military Academy at West Point, the University of South Carolina, the University of Wisconsin, Harvard University, Columbia University, the National Humanities Center, Research Triangle Park, NC, and the Virginia Historical Society.

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    Joe Gisondi

    Joe Gisondi, professor of journalism at Eastern Illinois University, is the author of both Monster Trek: The Obsessive Search for Bigfoot and The Field Guide to Covering Sports. He has worked as a journalist for the Orlando Sentinel, Flo.

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    Johnny Heller

    Johnny Heller is an award winning actor and teacher with over 25 years of experience in the industry in voice over, stage, television and stand up comedy.  He has narrated nearly 600 titles for adults, young adults and children – working in almost every genre. Heller is a 2005 and 2009  Audie Award Winner, a double nominee in 2015,  a 2014 Nominee for Best Male Narrator, a double nominee in 2012 and was named a Best Voice of 2008 – 2011, 2014, 2015 and a Publishers Weekly Listen Up Award Winner 2008-2013.   A winner of over 25 Earphone Awards, Audiofile Magazine named Heller one of the top 50 voices of the 20th Century.

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    Susan Carol McCarthy

    Susan Carol McCarthy is the award-winning author of three works of literary fiction, Lay That Trumpet in Our Hands, True Fires, and A Place We Knew Well (Random House, October 2015) plus the non-fiction Boomers 101: The Definitive Collection. Her books have been widely selected by libraries and universities for their One Book, One Community and Freshman Year Read programs, and incorporated into school curricula in 29 states and six countries. Although each of her novels was inspired by true events in her home state of Florida—a series of shocking race crimes, notoriously corrupt small-town politics, a week of military-imposed terror—McCarthy is best known for creating muscle-and-blood characters for whom the larger political becomes intensely personal, and for her original blend of “fact, memory, imagination, and truth with admirable grace.” (The Washington Post) A native Floridian, she lives in Carlsbad, California.

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    Craig Pittman

    Craig Pittman, author of Oh Florida!  How America’s Weirdest State Influences the Rest of the Country.

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    Marisella Veiga

    Marisella Veiga is a professional writer and college professor.  Her work has appeared in both literary and commercial publications, including the Washington Post, Poets & Writers and Art in America.  In 2004, Veiga was given the Evelyn La Pierre Award in Journalism by Empowered Women International. She is a nationally syndicated columnist with Hispanic Link News Service.  Selected essays are on a spoken word CD, Square Watermelons: Ten Essays on Living with Two Cultures. Many short stories, one a Pushcart Prize Special Mention in Fiction, are in literary anthologies.

    Currently an adjunct professor at Flagler College, Veiga has years of college teaching experience at other colleges and universities.

    In 2014, Veiga was awarded a residency at the Anderson Center for Interdisciplinary Studies in Red Wing, Minnesota. She wrote a basic draft about her formative years as a resettled Cuban refugee in the Twin Cities.  We Carry Our Homes with Us is the result—it is forthcoming this April from the Minnesota Historical Society Press.

    This March, Veiga received an award from the Lilly Endowment in order to study Poetry, Prose and Prayer with poet Michael Dennis Browne at the Collegeville Institute for Ecumenical and Cultural Research in Collegeville, Minnesota.

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    Lu Vickers

    Lu Vickers is the author of one novel and several books on Florida history, including Weeki Wachee, City of Mermaids, and Cypress Gardens: America’s Tropical Wonderland.  She has also received three Individual Artists Grants from Florida’s Division of Cultural Affairs for fiction.  In 2014, as she was in the final stages of editing her latest book, Remembering Paradise Park: Tourism and Segregation at Silver Springs, she was awarded a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship for excerpts from a novel in progress.

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    Doris Weatherford

    Doris Weatherford has been publishing books on women’s history for over thirty years, while she also managed political campaigns and chaired the Florida Women’s Hall of Fame. Her first and second books, Foreign and Female: Immigrant Women in America, 1840-1930 and American Women and World War II, were both written after Weatherford moved to Florida, where she has lived more than thirty years. Governor Lawton Chiles appointed her as a trustee of Hillsborough Community College, and she sometimes teaches at the University of South Florida. Also a member of the advisory board of the Center for Florida History at Florida Southern College, she has received grants from the Florida Humanities Council and other organizations. Doris remains grateful for a graduate fellowship from Brandeis University.