THE SOCIETY OF MIDLAND AUTHORS
THE SMA SPEAKERS BUREAU
We encourage librarians, event coordinators, and
to arrange an appearance
for any of these fine SMA authors.
Elizabeth Anderson Why I Write Christian Books For Children;
Freelance Writing For Profit & Pleasure; The Lincoln Highway;
All About Books: From A to Z
Carol Ascher I enjoy speaking
about memoir writing, as well as offering workshops on writing
a memoir, and am often asked to talk about and read from my
own memoir, Afterimages.
Arnie Bernstein Chicago
film history, Civil War/Lincoln history, creative writing, creativity
in corporate communications
Mervin Block Broadcast Newswriting
Marlene Targ Brill All aspects
of writing and publishing; research; the fun of nonfiction;
biography; writing workshops
Steven Burgauer A lively
presentation about the fun and challenges of writing science
Andrea Cheng Picture books,
middle grade fiction, young adult fiction
Marilyn J. Chiat Religious Art
Karen Coates Asia, Southeast
Asia, Asian writing and journalism
Alzina Stone Dale Crime, mystery
Michael H. Ebner (all slide
illustrated) Baseball as History/History as Baseball, Glitter
Amid Despair: Chicago as the Dual Metropolis, Creating Chicago's
North Shore, Teaching American History in the New Century
Bruce L. Felknor Unsung Heroes
the Merchant Marine at War; Classics of Political Mischief;
Historic Charlatans & Impostors; Boners & Howlers from
the Fount of Knowledge
Carol Felsenthal The art
of writing unauthorized profiles and biographies and how to
Judith Bernette Bloom Fradin
Children's books, American history, and picture books
Keir Graff Writing, publishing,
book reviewing, adult fiction and children’s literature
Edward E. Gordon Business and
Keir Graff Writing, publishing,
book reviewing, adult fiction and children’s literature
Barbara Gregorich How to
Self-Publish through CreateSpace
Valiska Gregory Children's
Books, Writing Workshops, Book Reviewing
Eldon L. Ham Sports business,
law and history
Amy Hassinger Writing Historical
Fiction, Writing about Adolescence, Faith and Writing, Writing
Frank S. Joseph Race, religion,
Chicago in 1948
Josh Karp Comedy, popular culture/cultural
criticism, freelance magazine writing and golf
Richard C. Lindberg Chicago
Crime Tours; Windy City history; his published books about Michael
C. McDonald; the Schuessler-Peterson Murders; the Chicago White
Sox; and Gaslight-Era Criminals Belle Gunness, H.H. Holmes and
Johann Hoch; and writing and publishing in Chicago
Gail Lukasik Fiction, poetry
and nature writing workshops; mystery writing; presentations
on publishing, Illinois and the Trail of Tears
Erin McKean Dictionaries, Weird
and Wonderful Words, English Usage and Abusage
James L. Merriner Chicago,
Illinois, and National Politics. History of Corruption and Reform
in Chicago. The Case of Governor George Ryan
Brandon Marie Miller History
topics and writing nonfiction, for school visitis and adult
Patricia Monaghan Earth Spirituality,
Jane Anne Morris Local Democracy,
the Constitution, & Corporations; "Free Trade," Corporate Social
Responsibility, and Democracy; Corporate Constitutional Obstacles
to Localizing Democracy; and more
Gunter Nitsch Life in Post
WWII Germany; refugees; East Prussia
James Reiss Poetry Readings,
Michael Raleigh Mystery writing;
fiction writing; Myths and realities of the publishing world;
Chicago history topics, including the Great Chicago Fire
Jim Schwab Environmental Topics;
Urban Planning; Oral History and the Art of Interviewing; Adoption
and Foster Care
Sue William Silverman Conducts
creative nonfiction writing workshops; gives presentations on
child abuse prevention, addictions, and family dynamics
Daniel P. Smith Chicago police,
Chicago crime, journalism and non-fiction writing for youth,
using nonfiction lit to help produce crime and mystery novels,
1968 Democratic National Convention
Gerry and Janet Souter Paths
to Publishing, Writing Community Histories
Tom Swift All aspects of nonfiction
writing, including history, essays, research, biography, and
John Wasik Samuel Insull and
the history of utilities in Chicago & Investor protection
and personal finance issues
Michele Weldon Writing Workshops,
Scribotherapy, Journalism, Women's Issues
Sel Yackley Bipolar illness,
suicide, the death penalty, life in a small Illinois town, Turkey
(history, culture, politics, tourism)
Mary Elizabeth Anderson
Mary Elizabeth Anderson is an experienced writer who will speak to audiences on the following topics: "'Why I Write Christian Books For Children," and "Freelance Writing For Profit & Pleasure." She will also speak to schools on the topic of "The Lincoln Highway: The First Transcontinental Highway Across America." A former elementary teacher, she is currently a Stephen's Minister at Trinity United Methodist Church in Grand Island, Nebraska.
Awards include: The 2003 Literary Award given by the Humanities Council of Hall County, Nebraska, for fostering excellence in the arts and humanities in Nebraska's heartland, and the Authors Award given by The Antique Automobile Club of America--Publications Committee--for her children's book: LINK ACROSS AMERICA: THE STORY OF THE HISTORIC LINCOLN HIGHWAY
She has published the following books:
- LINK ACROSS AMERICA: THE STORY OF THE HISTORIC LINCOLN HIGHWAY
- TAKING CEREBRAL PALSY TO SCHOOL
- EVER WONDER WHAT TO DO? ALL ABOUT MANNERS
- IT'S ME AGAIN, GOD (a story devotional book for preteens)
- WHY DID THEY BUILD A FENCE? (a multicultural picture book due out in 2004)
Anderson teaches "Freelance Writing For Profit & Pleasure" seminars at community colleges throughout the heartland. Her articles and stories have appeared in over one hundred periodicals.
She holds a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education degree from Northwest Missouri State University, along with 30 additional credits in the field of education. She lives in Grand Island, Nebraska, with her husband, Don Anderson. They are the parents of three adult children, and have six grandchildren.
| Carol Ascher Email
I offer talks of memoir writing to people interested in
writing personal essays and their own memoirs. These talks
include such topics as: How does a memoir differ from an autobiography?
What about my life is interesting? Where do I start writing?
What if I don't remember everything I need to know? How should
I organize my memoir—by chronology or by theme?
I also offering workshops consisting of one or more sessions
on writing a memoir, which begin with "mini talks"
on some of the subjects listed above, but allow students ample
opportunity to start writing down their memories and turn
them into sections of their memoirs.
Finally, I am often asked to talk about and read from my
own memoir, Afterimages, which describes growing up in Topeka,
Kansas, in a family of Central European refugees from the
Nazis. In this case, I talk both about my life experience
and about the process of returning to painful memories in
order to write a memoir.
773-233-4577 FAX: 773-233-4541
10704 S. Artesian; Chicago, IL 60655
Chicago film history, Civil War/Lincoln history, creative writing, creativity in corporate communications
Author of Hollywood on Lake Michigan: 100 Years of Chicago and the Movies, The Hoofs and Guns of the Storm: Chicago's Civil War Connections and editor of The Movies Are: Carl Sandburg's Film Reviews & Essays: 1920 - 1928. All published by Lake Claremont Press.
Presentations at DePaul University, Columbia College, Southern Illinois University, University of Illinois at Chicago, BBC Radio, numerous libraries, bookstores, conferences and broadcast outlets.
Experienced and award-winning writer/editor.
Mervin Block has written news at three television networks:
as a staff writer for the "CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite"
and the "ABC Evening News with Frank Reynolds" and as a freelance
at NBC News. He has written news for Walter Cronkite, Ed Bradley,
Tom Brokaw, Charles Kuralt, Charles Osgood, Dan Rather, Frank
Reynolds, Diane Sawyer, Mike Wallace, Bob Trout, Douglas Edwards,
Edwin Newman, Roger Mudd and Harry Reasoner.
Broadcast Newswriting: The RTNDA Reference Guide (co-published by the
Radio-Television News Directors Association, 1994)
Rewriting Network News: WordWatching Tips from 345 TV and Radio Scripts
Writing Broadcast News--Shorter, Sharper, Stronger (Revised and Expanded), 2d
Writing News for TV and Radio: The Interactive CD and Handbook (with Joe
Durso, Jr., 1998)
Block has worked as a newspaper reporter and editor in Chicago, has served as
executive news producer for WBBM-TV, Chicago, has written and broadcast
editorials for WNBC-TV, New York City, and has won first prize three times
for TV spot-news scripts in the annual competition of the Writers Guild.
He has also written a column on broadcast newswriting, "WordWatching," for
the RTNDA magazine, Communicator. He has taught broadcast
newswriting at Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism,
and he has been teaching workshops in radio and television newsrooms.
Block holds an M.S.J. from Medill School of Journalism, Northwestern
University, and a certificate from Columbia's Graduate School
|Marlene Targ Brill
aspects of writing and publishing; research; the fun of nonfiction; biography; writing
Marlene is an award-winning author of more than 40 books for
readers of all ages. Her list of published books includes nonfiction for children and
adults and historical fiction for young readers. She writes to create nonfiction that is
fun to read (Tooth Tales from around the World, the only nonfiction history of the tooth
fairy) and that highlights strong people who have changed our world through their
everyday actions (Allen Jay and the Underground Railroad, Diary of a Drummer Boy, Margaret
Knight: Girl Inventor). She also has a passion for writing women into history (Sport
Success series, Women for Peace, Journey for Peace: The Story of Rigoberta Menchu). Her
Tooth Tales from around the World received a Children's Choice Award, and her Keys to
Parenting a Child with Autism was a Parent's Choice.
Marlene is a former special educator who currently writes educational materials, magazine
articles, and other business and healthcare materials in addition to books. As a speaker,
she provides audiences with a humorous view of the ups and downs of the writing life.
|Steven Burgauer Email
Avid hiker, Eagle Scout, founder of a successful mutual fund,
political candidate, Steven Burgauer lives and writes in Illinois.
A graduate of Illinois State University and the New York Institute
of Finance, Mr. Burgauer currently writes science fiction and
occasionally teaches Economics for a local university. He has
written a book on personal investment management entitled, THE
WEALTH BUILDER'S GUIDE. His science fiction titles include:
- FORNAX (1994)
- THE BRAZEN RULE (1995)
a viral killer on the loose
- THE LAST AMERICAN (1996)
a country on the brink of disaster
- IN THE SHADOW OF OMEN (1997)
- THE GRANDFATHER PARADOX
a time-travel story, back to the U.S. Civil War
- TREACHERY ON THE DARK SIDE
sex, murder, and intrigue at zero-g
- THE RAILGUNS OF LUNA (2001)
a sick philosophy spreading across the planet
- THE NIGHT OF THE ELEVENTH
Neanderthal meets human in the mountains of Iberia
- NEWHUMAN (2003)
superior humans colonize a newly-terraformed Mars
- THE SLAVES OF APHRODITE
genetically rejuvenated slaves colonize a newly-terraformed
His work has been reviewed in many places, including LOCUS, SCIENCE
FICTION CHRONICLE, the PEORIA JOURNAL STAR, the EUREKA LITERARY
MAGAZINE, and PROMETHEUS, the journal of the Libertarian Futurist
Society. He was also a contributor to the zany murder mystery,
NAKED CAME THE FARMER, headlined by SF great Philip Jose Farmer.
|Andrea Cheng Email
Andrea Cheng is the author of several books for children
and young adults. Her first novel, Marika, was selected
by the city of Cincinnati for "On the Same page," a citywide
reading program. Honeysuckle House, Anna the Bookbinder,
and Shanghai Messenger received Parent's Choice Awards.
Grandfather Counts was recently featured on Reading
Rainbow. Her books draw on her background as the child of
Hungarian immigrants as well as the background of her husband,
the son of immigrants from China.
Ms. Cheng studied Chinese at Cornell University where she
received a Masters degree in linguistics. She and her family
have traveled to both Budapest and Shanghai to get to know
their extended families. In addition to writing books for
children, Ms. Cheng teaches English as a Second Language at
Cincinnati State Technical and Community College. She lives
with her husband and their three children in Cincinnati, Ohio.
|Marilyn J. Chiat
2812 Drew Avenue South; Minneapolis, MN 55410
Art and Architecture
Marilyn J.Chiat received
her Ph.D. in Art History from the University of Minnesota. Her first book, HANDBOOK OF
SYNAGOGUE ARCHITECTURE, was
published in Brown University's Post-Biblical Judaica Series (1982).
Her most recent book, AMERICA'S RELIGIOUS ARCHITECTURE: SACRED PLACES FOR EVERY COMMUNITY,
was published by Preservation Press, John Wiley & Sons, NYC (1997). Dr. Chiat has
presented illustrated slide lectures on religious art and architecture at venues
throughout the nation and abroad and has appeared on many television and radio shows. She
has received awards for her work from Partners for Sacred Places in Philadelphia, the
Minnesota Humanities Commission and the City of Minneapolis. In her presentations, she
introduces the audience to the "stories" religious art and architecture can tell
about the people who built, decorated and worshipped in the buildings.
One of her most
popular talks, "America's Magnificent Mosaic: A Survey of Religious Art and
Architecture in the United States," takes the audience on a tour of the nation's
byways and highways looking at buildings erected by the nation's various ethnic and/or
religious groups. It is a celebration of what makes America unique: the freedom it offers
all people to worship where and how they choose. Another presentation, "The Shul in
the Golden Medina," looks at the development of one religious group's places of
worship in the New World, examining what they brought with them from the Old World and
what they transformed in the New. Other lectures include a comparative study of religious
architecture, looking at what is shared and what is different among various places of
Karaen Coates Email
* Author of Cambodia Now: Life in the Wake of War
* Auhor of Pacific Lady: The First Woman to Sail Solo
Across the World’s Largest Ocea
* Numerous presentations on Asian culture and current affairs
given with photojournalist Jerry Redfern in the United States
* Experience teaching journalism in Thailand and creative
nonfiction writing in Myanmar
(Coates was deported from Myanmar after teaching
in Mandalay, May 2009)
|Alzina Stone Dale
773-684-1856 (Nov-June) 616-426-8275 (July-Oct)
5548 S. Kenwood Avenue; Chicago, IL 60637 1714
Crime, mystery writing, biographies.
writer/lecturer Alzina Stone Dale gives mystery seminars at the Newberry Library and
appears on/chairs panels here and abroad, including Bouchercons, Malice Domestic, and
Magna cum Murder. A biographer of Dorothy L. Sayers, T.S. Eliot and G.K.Chesterton, editor
of DOROTHY L. SAYERS:THE CENTENNARY CELEBRATION and 1998 contributer to the C.S. LEWIS
READERS ENCLYCLOPEDIA, THE SWIFTLY TILTING WORLD OF MADELEINE' L'ENGLE, and THE OXFORD
COMPANION TO CRIME AND MYSTERY, as well as a series of mystery walking guides to LONDON,
ENGLAND, NEW YORK, CHICAGO and WASHINGTON DC, Dale has spoken to library groups, literary
socities, and woman's clubs from Seattle to Washington DC. MYSTERY READERS WALKING GUIDE: ENGLAND was nominated for UK's Crime Writers Association 's Dagger, while CHICAGO won Malice Domestic's Agatha Award and teapot. Her
latest guide to WASHINGTON DC covers political mysteries from David Baldacci to Margaret
Truman. Dale is a member of the Authors Guild, Crime Writers Association, Mystery Writers
of America, Dorothy L.Sayers and Ngaio Marsh Societies, and the Society of Midland
Authors. A native Chicagoan she lives in the Hyde Park house where she was born.
|Michael H. Ebner Email
- Baseball as History/History as Baseball
- Glitter Amid Despair: Chicago as the Dual Metropolis
- Creating Chicago's North Shore
- Teaching American History in the New Century
James D. Vail III Professor of History emeritus at Lake Forest
College and author of "Creating Chicago's North Shore: A Suburban
History" (University of Chicago Press, 1988). Recipient of teaching
awards from the American Historical Association, "Chicago Tribune,"
and Lake Forest College.
|Bruce L. Felknor
509 Trinity Court; Evanston, IL 60201
Heroes: the Merchant Marine at War; Classics of Political Mischief; Historic Charlatans
& Impostors; Boners & Howlers from the Fount of Knowledge
Bruce Felknor is
an author, editor, encyclopedist, editorial consultant, and raconteur, among whose books
are the recent "The U.S. Merchant Marine at War, 17752945," the 1966 classic
"Dirty Politics," "Political Mischief," "How to Look Things Up
and Find Things Out," "The Treasury of the Encyclopaedia Britannica" (with
Clifton Fadiman), and a prize-winning history of the 125-year-old Highland Park
Thank-you letters from program chairs describe his audiences as "captivated"
. . . "rapt" . . . "spellbound." The lectures mine Felknor's own
background: executive director of the then-national Fair Campaign Practices Committee
(1956-66), and varied roles at "Encyclopaedia Britannica" (1966-85), longest as
|Carol Felsenthal Email
1720 N. Cleveland Ave., Chicago, IL 60614
Carol Felsenthal’s latest book, Clinton in Exile: A President
Out of the White House, a look at Bill Clinton’s post presidency,
including the bruising battle against Barack Obama for the democratic
nomination, will be published by William Morrow/HarperCollins
on April 22, 2008. She has also written biographies of Katharine
Graham (an HBO mini-series adapted from the book is currently
in the works, with a revised screenplay by Joan Didion); Alice
Roosevelt Longworth, and Si Newhouse.
Carol Felsenthal has spoken all over the country and abroad
about such topics as the art of writing unauthorized profiles
and biographies of some of the country’s most rich and powerful
people; what’s it like inside the peculiar worlds of book, magazine,
and newspaper publishing; how to get published (find an agent,
write a proposal);, and more generally on the subjects of local,
state, and nationl politics and media.
Information on her speaking engagements and links to appearances
on television and radio can be found at www.carolfelsenthal.com.
Felsenthal has taught college and graduate students at the University
of Chicago in a class titled "Writing Profiles."
For 15 years
she taught a popular class at the Francis W. Parker Evening
School titled "
How to Get Published."
| Judith Bernette Bloom Fradin
Email Web Site
847-869-8099 (10 AM to 10 PM, please)
2121 Dobson Street; Evanston, IL 60202
Matter: For the past ten years I have written children's nonfiction books.
These include co-authorship of 24 books on the states, a book about
Sacagawea, a booklet on storm chasers and one about Mt. Washington, and my
award-winning Ida B. Wells: Mother of the Civil Rights Movement,
co-written with my husband, Dennis.
In addition, I find and re-photograph archival pictures for Fradin books. My
research takes me to the Library of Congress as well as to many primary
sources. I also take relevant photos myself.
My presentations focus on research techniques, archival photography, and the
creation of a book from idea to hardcover. I am a former teacher and I enjoy
audiences from kindergarten on up.
Biographical Information: I was born in Mt. Sinai
Hospital on January 8, 1945, and have lived in the Chicago area
my entire life. I received my undergraduate degree from Northwestern
University and earned my master's degree at Northeastern Illinois
University. I'm married to author Dennis B. Fradin, and we are
the parents of three adult children. I live in Evanston, just
one block north of the Chicago border. I enjoy gardening, traveling,
and going to the park with my 4-year-old grandson.
|Edward E. Gordon, Ph.D.
Email Biography Web Site
312-664-5196 FAX: 312-943-7360
220 E. Walton, Chicago, IL 60611
Ed Gordon is a speaker with vision. As a corporate president,
author, university professor and historian, Gordon sees the
many perspectives shaping current events. His presentation mix
humor with powerful messages that inform and inspire widely
diverse audiences. Among his 17 books are: Winning the
Global Talent Showdown: How Businesses and Communities Can Partner
to Rebuild the Jobs Pipeline (Berrett-Koehler, 2009),
2010 Meltdown: Solving the Impending Jobs Crisis
(Praeger, 2005), and Skill Wars: Winning the Battle for
Productivity and Profit, (Butterworth-Heinemann, 2000).
Ed Gordon is president of Imperial Consulting Corporation and has taught at
three Chicago-area universities: DePaul, Loyola, and Northwestern.
Over 100,000 people across the U.S. and Canada have heard his
keynote speeches and workshops. Some of his most popular current
- The Future of Jobs and Careers
- Preparing Youth for 20th-Century Careers
- Rebuilding the Jobs Pipeline: Mobilizing Business-Community
Partnerships for Change
- Taming the Talent Revolution: A Decade of Opportunity
Ed has written over 200 articles and has been quoted in U.S.A.
Today, the New York Times, the Washington Post,
Investor's Business Daily, the Chicago Tribune,
the Chicago Sun-Times, the Los Angeles Times,
and many others. He has appeared on the CBS Network's, "The
Early Show," as well as CNN, NPR, and other major media outlets.
|Keir Graff Email
How I Kept My Day Job and Became a Published Author—and
You Can, Too!
Keir Graff knows what it’s like to get a bad review—and what
it’s like to give one. The author of The Price of Liberty
and three other novels recently made his debut as a children’s
author with The Other Felix. He’s also the editor of
Booklist Online, the website of the American Library
Association’s venerable book-review journal, Booklist.
His unique perspective on publishing has been earned through
years of hard work, serendipity, and sometimes painful trial
and error. In this lighthearted and informative talk, Graff
tells his own story of breaking into print while offering practical
advice about getting published, starting with the question every
writer needs to ask: "Will getting published make me happy?"
Marjorie Monaghan, an events programmer at the Chicago Public
Library’s Harold Washington Library Center, called Keir Graff
a "programmer’s dream of a speaker."
In addition to this popular presentation, Graff is often in
demand as a moderator and panelist, discussing various aspects
of writing, publishing, book reviewing, and adult fiction and
| Barbara Gregorich Email
How to Self-Publish through CreateSpace
Barbara Gregorich has published approximately 200 books with
traditional publishers; she has self-published 5 books through
CreateSpace and plans a total of 10 or more. In a detailed,
instructive slide-show program, she shows others how to self-publish
at no cost whatsoever.
|Valiska Gregory Email
5300 Grandview Dr.; Indianapolis, IN 46228
Children's Books, Writing Workshops, Book Reviewing
Award-winning poet and children's book author Valiska Gregory
has published over a dozen books for children. Translated in
seven different languages, her books have received Parents'
Choice Awards, been chosen for the American Booksellers' "Pick
of the Lists," and been featured on PBS and national television.
Library reference source Something About the Author calls
her a "star in the children's literature scene."
Writer-in-residence at Butler University, Ms. Gregory is the
founding director of the Butler Children’s Literature Conference.
She reviews children’s books for Publishers Weekly, and
she enjoys speaking at schools, libraries, and conferences across
the country. www.valiskagregory.com
|Eldon L. Ham
30 N. LaSalle Street;
Chicago, Illinois 60602
Sports business, law and history
Adjunct professor of sports law at Chicago-Kent College of Law. Author of two published books on sports related issues, plus many articles including Chicago Tribune (Latrell Sprewell), Trial Magazine (steroids), Seton Hall Sports Law Journal (disabled athletes), Marquette Sports Law Review (baseball and law). Often featured in the media (WGN Radio and numerous other stations coast to coast, including Alaska, plus the BBC in England).
One of the first attorneys to challenge and change the NFL drug policy in court (Richard Dent v. NFL); former general counsel and chief operating officer, Zucker Sports Management; featured luncheon speaker at the Alabama State Bar Annual Meeting; featured prominently by the National Law Journal in February, 2003; designated to address the 100th World Series Symposium in Boston, October 1, 2003 (sponsored by the Baseball Hall of Fame, Boston Red Sox and Northeastern University).
The 100 Greatest Sports Blunders of All Time (Contemporary: 1997)
The PlayMasters--an unauthorized history of the NBA (McGraw-Hill/Contemporary: 2000)
|Amy Hassinger Email
Writing Historical Fiction, Writing about Adolescence,
Faith and Writing, Writing the Novel
Amy Hassinger graduated from Barnard College and the Iowa
Writers' Workshop, where she received her MFA in fiction writing.
She is the author of two novels. Deemed "superb" by O,
the Oprah Magazine and "truly penetrating" by Salon.com,
Nina: Adolescence (Putnam and Listen and Live Audio,
2003) has been translated into Dutch and Portuguese, won a
Publisher's Weekly Listen Up! Award and was
selected as an Audio Book of the Year by ForeWord
Magazine. In a starred review, Library Journal
says The Priest's Madonna (Putnam and Listen and Live
Audio, 2006) is "a rich fabric of love, mystery, anguish,
and faith" while Marie Claire magazine calls
it "a provocative page-turner." Houses in Spain, The Netherlands,
Russia, and Indonesia have purchased the translation rights.
Hassinger received a 2006 Finalist Award in Prose from the
Illinois Arts Council and was named a semi-finalist for the
2005 Julia Peterkin Award. Her stories have appeared or are
forthcoming in Arts and Letters, Salt
Hill, Natural Bridge, and Blithe
House Quarterly Online, and have been anthologized in
Best Lesbian Love Stories.
She is also the author of Finding Katahdin: An Exploration
of Maine's Past. She's taught English to middle school
students, writing and literature to undergraduates, and is
currently on the faculty of the University of Nebraska's Low-Residency
MFA in Writing Program. She lives in Urbana, Illinois with
her husband and daughter.
|Frank S. Joseph Email
Race, religion, Chicago in 1948
Frank S. Joseph is a novelist, journalist, publisher and direct
marketer. His novel TO LOVE MERCY, a tale of blacks and whites,
Christians and Jews, how children view the world, conflict
and forgiveness ... and Chicago in 1948 ... has won six awards
and gone into a second printing.
As an Associated Press reporter, Frank covered the Democratic
National Convention disorders of 1968, Dr. Martin Luther King
Jr.'s march into Cicero IL, and nearly every street event
during Chicago's riot-torn mid '60s.
|Josh Karp Email
847-869-2359 (office) 847-828-7322 (cell)
Comedy, popular culture/cultural criticism, freelance
magazine writing and golf
Background: I have written for the Atlantic Monthly, Salon,
Premiere, LA Times Sunday Magazine, TimeOut New York, Chicago
Magazine, Chicago Sun-Times and other publications. I'm
the author of "A Futile and Stupid Gesture: How Doug Kenney
and National Lampoon Changed Comedy Forever" which came out
in September 2006. I have a Master's in Journalism from Northwestern
University, where I am a frequent lecturer. Additionally,
I have been an adjunct professor of journalism at Columbia
|Richard Lindberg Email Biography
Chicago Crime Tours; Windy City history; his published
books about Michael C. McDonald; the Schuessler-Peterson Murders;
the Chicago White Sox; and Gaslight-Era Criminals Belle Gunness,
H.H. Holmes and Johann Hoch; and writing and publishing in Chicago.
Richard Lindberg is the author of fourteen books dealing with
colorful and unique historical Chicago themes including: Return
to the Scene of the Crime: A Guide to Infamous Places in Chicago;
Shattered Sense of Innocence: The Chicago Child Murders of 1955;
The Gambler King of Clark Street: Michael C. McDonald & the
Rise of Chicago’s Democratic Machine; Chicago Yesterday & Today;
Total White Sox and others.
Utilizing overhead projection slides, Lindberg provides his
audience with unique insight and analysis into little known
episodes drawn from "notorious" Chicago; the genesis of Windy
City crime; famous unsolved crimes and the Gaslight Era of Chicago
history. He will also comment on White Sox baseball (from his
perspective as the official team historian), ethnic neighborhoods,
and can offer practical advice and share publishing "war stories"
to would-be authors concerning how not to get a book in print,
finding the right agent, negotiating contracts, dealing with
difficult publishers, and marketing promotion.
Over the years Rich has been invited to address numerous membership
groups, including the Mystery Writers of America (Chicago chapter).the
Fourth Lights Adult Education Group, Friends of Literature,
the Kiwanis Clubs, a number of neighborhood Chicago Public Library
branches, over 50 suburban libraries stretching from Lake Villa
(north) to Calumet City (south) and Sterling, Illinois (west),
Hugo's Companions (a scion society of the Baker Street Irregulars),
the City Club of Chicago, the Chicago Architectural Foundation,
Triton Community History Organization, West Suburban Trial Lawyers
Association, Mather Lifeways, the Illinois Center for the Book
(workshop), the Swedish Cultural Society, various city and suburban
community historical societies. In addition he has led yearly
bus tours for the Chicago History Museum since 2007.
Rich has appeared as an interview subject on numerous cable
documentary television and radio programs of local and national
origin over the years, including Extension 720 on WGN
Radio Chicago, History’s Mysteries, Mobsters, Masterminds,
American Justice, Cities of the Underworld, and has been
fetured in several segments of Chicago Stories, on Network
Chicago, Channel 11.
|Gail Lukasik Email Web Site
Fiction, Poetry and Nature Writing Workshops, Publishing, Illinois and the Trail of Tears
Gail Lukasik is the author of three mystery novels and one book of poetry. She was awarded the Illinois Arts Council literary award for her poem, “In Country.” Her work has appeared in journals such as the Illinois Review, The Georgia Review, and Rhino. She has taught creative writing at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and currently teaches at Roosevelt University. Her writing workshops are interactive and lively and appeal to beginning writers and more seasoned writers.
She has given over sixty library presentations, including How To Get Published, How To Jump Start Your Writing, Six Ways to Write a Poem, How To Enliven Your Fiction Writing and How To Write Killer Characters. For many years she taught writing workshops at Ragdale Foundation in Lake Forest. She was also one of the master teachers for the Sisters In Crime Mystery Writing Weekend.
Her latest suspense novel, The Lost Artist (May 2012), is set in Chicago and explores Illinois history, specifically Illinois's connection to the infamous Trail of Tears, as well sixteenth century American history and art. She would be delighted to give talks on these topics.
Gail Lukasik's books:
Landscape Toward a Proper Silence (Eye of the Comet Press 1992)
The Lost Artist (Five Star/Cengage 2012)
Leigh Girard mystery series:
Destroying Angels (Five Star/Cengage 2006)
Death's Door (Five Star/Cengage 2009)
4907 N. Washtenaw Avenue,
Chicago IL 60625
Dictionaries, Weird and Wonderful Words, English Usage and Abusage
As the editor of the only magazine for "word geeks," VERABATIM: The
Language Quarterly, and as Senior Editor, US Dictionaries, for Oxford
University Press, Erin McKean has spoken about weird words and the
dictionaries that hold them, the unusual corners of the English
language that produce them, and about good English and how to achieve
it (and her suggestions will surprise you!).
She has spoken to many organizations and groups of all ages,
including, locally, the Caxton Club and the University of Chicago
Alumni. She has also lectured and run a one-day "Word Lover's Boot
Camp" at the Smithsonian Institution.
Called "America's Lexicographical Sweetheart" by Neal Conan of NPR's
Talk of the Nation, she is a regular contributor to PRI's The Next
Big Thing with Dean Olsher, heard in Chicago on WBEZ.
|James L. Merriner
Chicago, Illinois, and National Politics
History of Corruption and Reform in Chicago
The Case of Governor George Ryan
Bio: As a political editor and columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times and the Atlanta Constitution, James L. Merriner covered local, state, and presidential politics for more than 25 years. He is the author of four books about politics and history that have won praise both from academic journals and the mainstream press:
Grafters and Goo Goos: Corruption and Reform in Chicago, 1833-2003 (2204)
The City Club of Chicago: A Centennial History (2003)
Mr. Chairman: Power in Dan Rostenkowski's America (1999)
Against Long Odds: Citizens Who Challenge Congressional Incumbents (1999)
Merriner now is writing a biography of former Governor George Ryan.
Merriner often is interviewed on local radio and television public-affairs programs and also has appeared on Book TV on C-SPAN2. He has taught journalism at the graduate level at Northwestern and Ohio State universities.
He enjoys speaking to community groups such as historical societies, service clubs, reform groups, writers' workshops and others.
|Brandon Marie Miller
History topics and writing nonfiction, for school visitis and adult conferences/events. Popular programs include: Women of the Old West; A Brief Gallop Through American Women's History; Why Are They Wearing That?: Fashion and History; "Your Dutiful Child": Growing up in Colonial America; Writing Nonfiction: Behind the Scenes With an Award-Winning Writer; Tips for Youngest Writers: Active Words, Our Mind's Eye, The 5 Senses.
Background: Brandon earned a degree in American History from Purdue University. Her writing background includes magazine articles, educational writings, and award-winning books for young people. She has also presented at state and national conferences for organizations like the International Reading Association and the National Council for the Social Studies.
|Patricia Monaghan Email
Earth Spirituality, Mythology
Patricia Monaghan is
one of the pioneers of the earth spirituality movement. Her classic mythological
dictionary, The Book of Goddesses and Heroines, has been in print continuously for more
than 20 years. Her recent works include The Goddess Path, The Goddess Companion and
Meditation: The Complete Basic Guide. She is currently finishing an anthology on Celtic
spirituality and a book on ecofeminism in Ireland. She is a member of the
interdisciplinary faculty at DePaul University.
She has lectured on goddesses and earth spirituality at
universities, community groups, libraries and festivals for more than a dozen years. The
author of a dozen books on spirituality and mythology, she is a member of the
interdisciplinary faculty at DePaul University in Chicago.
|Jane Anne Morris Email
608 251 2784
Democracy + Corporations + the Constitution + the History
of Corporate Law + Corporate
Personhood: Taking Stock
Corporate anthropologist Jane Anne Morris has spoken before
groups as diverse as: the International Forum on Globalization,
the American Association of University Women, Wisconsin Radfest,
the National Lawyer's Guild, the Texas Acid Rain Symposium,
the Midwest Radical Scholars and Activists Conference, the Nurses'
Environmental Health Watch, the Greens National Party Convention,
the Wolf River Earth First! Regional Rendezvous, Women of Science
of Southeastern Wisconsin, the Alliance for Democracy's founding
convention, the Public Interest Environmental Law Conference,
the Grey Panthers, Colómbia Support Network, the Association
of Humanist Sociology, the Ecological Resistance Movements Conference,
the Bascom Hall Sweatshop Occupation Teach-In, the Local Democracy
Convention, United Unitarians for a Just Economic Community,
and many more. She has also conducted numerous "ReThinking the
Corporation, ReThinking Democracy" weekend retreats around the
country from Los Angeles to Ohio.
Some of the topics I've spoken on follow. Or, suggest a new
angle to me. * Challenging Corporate Rule: Reclaiming Democratic
Rights * Rejuvenating Our Downsized Democracy * "Baby NAFTA":
'Free Trade' at Home * Corporate Social Responsibility and Democracy
* Is the Supreme Court Too Powerful?: Judicial Review and Democracy
* Corporations, "Rights," and Our Theme Park Democracy * Corporate
Shape-Shifters and the Manipulation of Constitutional Rights
* Democracy Unlimited: A Radical Return to Wisconsin Tradition
* States' Rights, Corporations, and Democracy * Local Democracy
& Corporate "Rights" * Model Law Challenging Corporate Constitutional
Rights * Corporate "Personhood" and Democracy * Regulatory Agencies
and Democracy * Revoking Corporate Charters * Rewriting Our
Constitution for Democracy * NIMBY Activism and Environmental
Education * Legal Fictions.
|Gunter Nitsch Email
Life in Post WWII Germany; refugees; East Prussia
Gunter Nitsch, the author of Weeds Like Us and STRETCH:
Coming of Age in Post-War Germany, was born in Koenigsberg,
East Prussia, in December 1937. By the time he was reunited
with his father at the age of 13, he had lived in Nazi Germany,
Soviet Russia, and in both the Soviet-Occupied Zone and the
British-Occupied Zone in Germany. Although both of his books
deal with the displacement of the people living in the eastern
German provinces following WWII, it is his hope that his story
will lead to a greater understanding of all of the refugee families
worldwide who have faced and are now facing a similar plight.
Gunter Nitsch has given dozens of presentations in the United
States and in Germany, including talks at Concordia Seminary
in St. Louis, The German Society of Pennsylvania, D.A.N.K. Haus,
DePaul University, as well as at clubs and churches in New York
and in Illinois. He is a regular contributor of articles to
The New Yorker Staats-Zeitung.
| Michael Raleigh Email
Mystery writing; fiction writing; Myths and realities of
the publishing world; Chicago history topics, including the
Great Chicago Fire.
Michael Raleigh is the author of nine novels and has received
four Illinois Arts Council awards for fiction. He is an emeritus
professor of English and History of the City Colleges, currently
teaching at DePaul.
Over the years Michael has given talks at dozens of community
libraries in the greater Chicago area, as well as many Chicago
Public Libraries. He has spoken at libraries in several southern
Wisconsin communities, including the Twin Lakes and Salem libraries.
Michael also has, for many years, given seminars twice a year
at the Newberry Library for its Adult Program series. One seminar
is on the subject of mystery writing and another on the general
problems of writing and selling a novel.
In particular Michael has given programs on all aspects of
writing fiction, finding an agent, dealing with publishers and
surviving the creative process in one piece. As a former instructor
of Chicago History at Truman College, he has also given talks
on little-known features of life in Chicago in the 1800s and
on the Great Chicago Fire.
Michael Raleigh's books:
In the Castle of the Flynns
The Blue Moon Circus (Sourcebooks,
Paul Whelan mystery series:
Death in Uptown (St. Martin's
A Body in Belmont Harbor
(St. Martin's Press, 1993)
The Maxwell Street Blues
(St. Martin's Press, 1994)
A Killer on Argyle Street (St.
Martin's Press, 1995)
The Riverview Murders (St.
Martin's Press, 1997)
| James Reiss Email
Poetry Readings, Writing Workshops
Pulitzer-Prize nominee James Reiss's latest full-length book
is Riff on Six: New and Selected Poems (Salt Publishing).
His work has appeared in such places as The Atlantic, Esquire,
The Hudson Review, The Iowa Review, The Kenyon Review, The Nation,
The New Republic, The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Paris
Review, Poetry, Slate, and The Virginia Quarterly Review.
His first poetry collection, The Breathers (Ecco Press),
was nominated for the National Book Award. His fourth book of
poems, Ten Thousand Good Mornings (Carnegie Mellon University
Press), was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize.
He received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts,
the Ohio Arts Council, and the New York Foundation for the Arts,
as well as awards from the Academy of American Poets, the College
English Association of Ohio, the Ohioana Library Association,
the Poetry Society of America, the Unterberg Poetry Center of
the 92nd Street Y in New York, and the Pushcart Press.
Reiss's poetry readings are in no way set "speeches,"
but, rather, ad-lib performances that tend to be dramatic, sprinkled
with anecdotes. He cares a great deal about amusing his audience.
His readings are informal and reach out to listeners.
His writing workshops are based upon his 43 years of teaching
college courses in creative writing in California, New York
City, and Ohio. His surname rhymes with “peace.” He is Emeritus
Professor of English and Founding Editor of Miami University
Press at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.
| Jim Schwab Email
773-384-4754 (home) 312-786-6364 (office)
1755 N. Campbell Ave.; Chicago IL 60647
Environmental Topics; Urban Planning; Oral History and the
Art of Interviewing; Adoption and Foster Care
Jim Schwab is the author of both Raising Less Corn and More
Hell, an oral history of the 1980s farm credit crisis, and
Deeper Shades of Green a portrait of the rising movement
for environmental justice in blue-collar and minority communities.
He has also written or been the prime author for three research
monographs of the American Planning Association, where he works
as senior research associate. These are: Industrial Performance
Standards for a New Century; Planning and Zoning for
Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations; and Planning
for Post-Disaster Recovery and Reconstruction, the last
the result of a five-year collaboration with the Federal Emergency
Management Agency. He has spoken to numerous lay and professional
audiences about planning issues, his own books, and other topics.
One of his favored topics is his involvement in church-based
environmental activism. Jim is the co-founder of the Lutheran
Environmental Network of the Synods, a consortium of synodical
environmental committees within the Evangelical Lutheran Church
in America, and he has pioneered energy conservation work in
that arena, as well as contributing to the environmental work
of the National Council of Churches. Jim also writes magazine
and journal articles on many of these topics. He and his wife
have also been adoptive and foster parents, and he plans to
begin writing and speaking on their experiences.
Sue William Silverman
Conducts creative nonfiction writing workshops; gives presentations
on child abuse prevention, addictions, and family dynamics.
Sue William Silverman is the author of two memoirs. In
addition to writing, Silverman is a professional speaker on
such subjects as child abuse, addictions, and family dynamics
and has appeared on numerous nationally syndicated radio and
television talk shows including the ABC John Stossel special
on addictions; the PBS show, "To the Contrary;" and the Discovery-Health
Dr. William Sechrist at the State University of New York, Cortland, says: "Sue is not only a gifted writer, she's a captivating speaker. She has a gentle way of commanding attention. She also listens carefully to questions from the audience and responds with sensitivity and intelligence. She is serious about her subject matter yet she is also funny at times, and always positive. She succeeds in being 'uplifting' and 'inspiring' about a problem most people cannot conceive of in those terms. She is an extraordinary woman."
Dr. Sunny Andrews, Director of the School of Social Work, University of Nebraska, Omaha, says: "I was extremely impressed with Sue's candor, her friendliness, and knowledge. Her audience loved her and her presentation."
Silverman also conducts creative nonfiction writing workshops and teaches in the low-residency MFA program at Vermont College. She lives in west Michigan.
| Daniel P. Smith Email
Chicago police, Chicago crime, journalism and non-fiction writing for youth, using nonfiction lit to help produce crime and mystery novels, 1968 Democratic National Convention.
Noted speaker Daniel P. Smith has brought his compelling programs
to schools, libraries, universities, association and private
groups. An award-winning journalist and Chicago native, Smith’s
first book, On the Job: Behind the Stars of the Chicago Police
Department, guides readers into the closed-door society
of the Chicago Police Department, while his author program shares
never-before-told stories of the tolls the job exacts on the
officers and the personal experiences that led him to pen On
the Job. Other programs include nonfiction writing seminars
and workshops for students (high school and college), the use
of nonfiction lit in writing crime and mystery fiction, and
a multi-media presentation on the 1968 Democratic National Convention.
References available upon request.
|Gerry and Janet Souter
Email Web Site
847-398-3074 FAX: 847-398-3075
Paths to Publishing, Writing Community Histories
Paths to Publishing: The many ways to get a book published based on our experience with over 20 books published since 1997.
Writing Community Histories: How to reseach, produce and publish community history books. We have produced and written three including a multuple award-winner.
Background: We are a book writing team with experience in adult non-fiction and juvenile non-fiction. Our books have gone into multiple printings and have won awards. We have also writtten plays, novels and short stories.
|Tom Swift Web
Site Bio 952-486-0809
All aspects of nonfiction writing, including history,
essays, research, biography, and journalism
I give talks at writers groups, American Indian organizations,
community education classrooms, library conferences, and book
clubs. I also serve as a writing consultant to undergraduate
and graduate writers.
I am especially passionate to meet and speak to people who
want to make writing part of their lives, even if not their
vocation. I teach classes and give lectures on everything
from how to get started to how to construct a compelling story.
Topics include memoir, essays, history, and biography.
I am often asked to talk about my award-winning biography
of Charles Albert “Chief” Bender, a human-interest story about
the greatest American Indian baseball player of all time.
|John Wasik Email
-Samuel Insull and the history of utilities in Chicago
(local business history)
-Investor protection and personal finance issues (retirement,
college planning, investing)
John Wasik has written 10 books, five
of them on investing and retirement. He has spoken all over
the U.S. and has won 18 awards for his writing and investigative
Covering topics that include investing, retirement. college
planning, taxes and real estate, he focuses on how to bring
balance to everyday life. His philosophy is that a sound "personal
ecology'' can make anyone's life sustainable through a diversified
harmony between, work, leisure, family and community. His speeches
illustrate how money can become a servant in this process and
create a prosperous and happy life.
As a columnist for Bloomberg
News, his work has appeared in newspapers on five continents
and his expertise on personal finance is sought after on a regular
basis in the broadcast media. He holds a B.A. in psychology
and an M.A. in Communications from the University of Illinois-Chicago
and is a certified retirement counselor (InFRE). He's also a
member of SABEW, SPJ and The Chicago Headline Club.
His articles have appeared in The New York Times, The Financial
Times, The International Herald Tribune, The Financial Post,
The Washington Post, Reader's Digest, Parade, Barron's, Popular
Science, Health, New York Newsday, The Chicago Sun-Times, The
Pittsburgh Press, The St. Louis Post Dispatch, The Seattle Times,
The Orange County Register and dozens of other papers.
Writing Workshops, Scribotherapy, Journalism, Women's Issues
Michele Weldon is an associate professor at Northwestern University's
Medill School of Journalism, author of two award-winning books
and journalist for more than 25 years writing for newspapers
and magazines. Her first book, "I Closed My Eyes" (Hazelden,
1999) is a creative nonfiction memoir avaiablable in seven languages.
"Writing to Save Your Life: How To Honor Your Story Through
Journaling" (Hazelden, 2001) is an instructive and entertaining
book about the process of writing as healing. Weldon offers
Writing to Save Your Life Workshops around the country
and offers keynotes around the country on issues of journalism
and advocacy for women and nonviolence.
A succesful keynote for nonprofit organizations and businesses
for the past 10 years, Weldon has spoken before more than 150
major organizations from the March of Dimes and Northern Trust
Bank to the Journalism and Women Symposium and the Northwestern
University Women in Leadership Conference. With a bachelors
and masters degree from Northwestern's Medill, Weldon has written
for newspapers such as the Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles
Times, Dallas Times Herald, New York Times
and scores more for decades. She has written for national and
local magazines including Parenting, Writers Digest,
Woman's Day, Dial, West Suburban Living,
Chicago, Bride's, Seventeen, Personal
Journaling and many others. She is a former editor at ADWEEK,
North Shore Magazine and Fairchild Publications and was
a columnist at the Dallas Times Herald.
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|Sel Erder Yackley Email
Bipolar illness, suicide, the death penalty, life in a small
Illinois town, Turkey (history, culture, politics, tourism,
Sel Erder Yackley is an award-winning journalist who was born
and reared in Turkey. After receiving her master’s degree in
journalism from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois,
she worked for United Press International, where she met Frank,
and for the Chicago Tribune. Sel lived in LaSalle country for
27 years and served on the boards of Illinois Valley Community
College as well as the Ottawa Elementary School Board. During
the 1970s, while raising three children, Sel became active in
local politics as well as civic and charitable organizations
in central Illinois. Ten years after her husband’s suicide,
she returned to Chicago to work in the travel business and became
involved in mental health issues. On the boards of international
groups, Sel continues to write, organize tours to Turkey, and
lecture at support groups.
Say it with Sel /See it with Sel
Author of Never Regret the Pain: Loving and Losing a Bipolar
Also see: www.tawsf.org