Allison Moon is a writer who has self-published two books under her Lunatic Ink imprint, Lunatic Fringe in 2011 and Hungry Ghost in 2013, both of which are a part of her Tales of the Pack series. The series is described as a lesbian coming-of-age story—with werewolves. Allison documented her self-publishing journey in her video blog, 90 Days of Self Publishing, which can be seen on her website: www.talesofthepack.com. In 2011, she was named a Lambda Literary Emerging LGBT Authors Fellow and a runner-up for the Victoria Hudson Emerging Writer Award. Allison is a strong advocate for women’s sexual health and empowerment. She teaches a class, How to Drive a Vulva (“Girl Sex 101”), all over the United States and Canada. She also educates others on the topics of writing, independent publishing, and social justice. Allison currently lives in Oakland, California, where she continues to work on the Tales of the Pack series.
Angel Punk (Organization)
What began as a full-length screenplay is now an entire story universe explored in three platforms: comic book series, novel, and movie. The first-time comic writers of Relium Media, Devon Lyon, Kevin Curry, and Scott Nelson, created the universe of Angel Punk and its impulsive character Mara, descendant of angels. Relium Media’s skilled team of artists include Val Mayerik, Steve Oliff, Bob Wiacek, and Tom Orzechowski, artists with comic series experience from DC to Marvel. Issue #0 was released in 2011 to general acclaim for its high-quality art and storytelling. The film, set to release this year, will serve as a prequel to the comic book series, and the young-adult novel, also set to release this year, continues Mara’s story from the end of the comic book series. Author Amber J. Keyser, former ballerina and evolutionary biologist, was excited to write the novel. Her books include An Algonquin Heart Song: Paddle My Own Canoe, The Basics of Cell Life with Max Axiom, Decoding Genes with Max Axiom, and Anatomy of a Pandemic.
Aron Nels Steinke
Before pursuing a career in comics and children’s books, Aron Nels Steinke created animation and storyboards for music videos. It was a Xeric Grant in 2006 that enabled Steinke to begin self-publishing his autobiographical comics series, Big Plans, which is currently on its fifth installment. His comics have also been printed in multiple anthologies, including Not My Small Diary and Papercutter. Aron’s all-ages graphic novel Neptune, published by Sparkplug Comic Books and Tugboat Press, has been translated and printed in French and was selected as a notable book in the 2012 edition of Best American Comics. Steinke has also written and illustrated two early-reader children’s books, The Super Crazy Cat Dance and The Super-Duper Dog Park, both published by Blue Apple Press. Another children’s book, this one a collaborative effort with his wife Ariel Cohn, will be available in fall 2014 from First Second Books. Aron lives in Portland, Oregon, and chronicles his day job as an elementary school teacher in comics form at www.aronnelssteinke.com.
Chris Roberson is a publisher and New York Times bestselling writer. He is known for his Eisner-nominated comic book series iZombie and Cinderella: Fables and Forever as well as his novel Here, There & Everywhere. He has also worked on series like Superman and Star Trek/Legion of Super-Heroes. Chris has been a finalist for the World Fantasy Award for Short Fiction four times, the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer twice, and the Sidewise Award for Best Alternate History Short Form twice, winning the Short Form in 2004 with his story “O One” and the Long Form in 2008 with his novel The Dragon’s Nine Sons. In 2012, Chris and his wife, Allison Baker, launched Monkeybrain Comics and Books. Monkeybrain has been cited by IGN as “the company that seems to be doing [digital comics] best,” and USA Today named its comic Masks & Mobsters the Best Digital Series of 2012. Chris currently lives in Portland, Oregon, with his wife and daughter.
Fiona Kenshole is an expert literary agent in children’s and YA books. After focusing her thesis on children’s literature and graduating from Cambridge University with her Master’s in English, she became an editor at A and C Black and won the Times Information Book Award for the non-fiction titles that she published. Fiona went on to be the Editorial Director for fiction at HarperCollins, where she published many titles, including Lois Lowry’s The Giver. During this time, Fiona’s published books won awards such as the Smarties and the Guardians. Before moving to Portland, Oregon, Fiona held the position of Deputy Managing Director of Hodder Children’s Books, was the Publishing Director at Oxford University Press Children’s Books, and was nominated for “Editor of the Year” at the British Book Awards. Fiona brought twenty years of publishing history and credibility with her when she joined Transatlantic Agency in February of 2013. Fiona not only represents a variety of children’s fiction and YA authors but also illustrators and animators. She has worked with many artists and directors while working with Laika, the animation studio known for producing the movies Coraline and Paranorman, and contributed to the publication of the book Here Be Monsters, the adventure novel by Alan Snow that Laika is producing as the movie The Boxtrolls. Fiona accepts queries and submissions through Transatlantic Agency, and enjoys all categories of children’s and Young Adult literature.
Jamie S. Rich
Jamie S. Rich has nearly twenty years of experience in the comic book world as a writer, editor, and publisher. He is the author of the several prose novels, including Cut My Hair, The Everlasting, Love the Way You Love, Have You Seen the Horizon Lately?, 12 Reasons Why I Love Her, and more recently, Bobby Pins and Mary Janes. Rich began as an editorial assistant at Dark Horse Comics and spent six years as editor-in-chief at Oni Press. His most recent projects include the graphic novel A Boy and a Girl, It Girl and the Atomics, Spell Checkers, The Double Life of Miranda Turner, and the six-part comic serial Integer City, which features in Dark Horse Presents. Rich is one of the producers of From the Gutters, a TV show providing an inside look into the comic book world by featuring some of the industry’s greatest talents and answering questions like, “How did a comic book get made” and “What is the creator of a comic book like?” The first episode of From the Gutters was released in October on YouTube. Jamie Rich currently resides in Portland, Oregon, and is a film reviewer for the Oregonian and DVDTalk.com. You can stay up-to-date with Jamie through his blog Confessions of a Pop Fan.
Jemiah Jefferson is a horror and erotica author. Her works have been published by Willamette Week, Just Out, Plazm, 2Grlz Quarterly, Cafe 80s Magazine, and others. St*rf*ck*ng, a collection of short stories published by Kevin Sampsell for Future Tense Books, was the first of Jefferson’s published works. In 1990, Jefferson wrote the first installment of her vampire series in only twenty-four hours. That book, later titled Voice of the Blood, was released in 2001 by Leisure Books. Wounds, Fiend, and A Drop of Scarlet later completed the series about sexy and smart Portland vampires. The “Vampire Quartet” novels were re-released as paperbacks and e-books in May 2011. A native of Denver, Colorado, Jefferson now lives in Portland, Oregon, and works at Dark Horse Comics. She also contributes to Popshifter and is writing a new novel.
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Jen Van Meter
Jen Van Meter began writing comics professionally in 1997 while enrolled in the University of Oregon’s Folklore Studies and English graduate program (she had previously received her BA in English from Vassar College). Oni Press commissioned Jen to write two tie-ins to the 1999 film The Blair Witch Project (1999-2000). Oni went on to publish her four-part series Hopeless Savages, which was nominated for an Eisner Award, a Friends of Lulu Award, and which also made frequent appearances on recommended reading lists by YA librarians’ groups. The entire collected series, Hopeless Savages: Greatest Hits 2000-2010, was published in trade paperback in 2010. Van Meter has written series for Dark Horse and Dynamite Comics, as well as for DC Comics (including Black Lightning: Year One) and for Marvel, most recently the four-issue mini-series Amazing Spider-Man Presents: Black Cat (2010). The Fresno, California, native now resides in Portland, Oregon, with her husband and children.
Jen Violi, author of the young-adult novel Putting Makeup on Dead People, was a finalist for the 2012 Oregon Book Awards and shortlisted for both the Oregon Spirit Book Awards and the 2012 Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association Book Awards. Jen is not just a writer; she is also a coach for people who have a need to express themselves. Support, feedback, motivation, inspiration, and a schedule are just a few ways in which she helps those who have a story they are trying to tell. Jen knows what it is like to need supportive, constructive feedback on writing, and she offers developmental editing to those who want a stronger manuscript. For those who need a jumpstart on their writing or a reminder of why they write in the first place, she offers workshops, retreats, and a class, Discover the Book You Were Meant to Write. Jen’s writing has appeared on The Burlesque Press Variety Show and Mac’s List and was featured in the online literary journal fwriction: review. Jen Violi currently resides in Portland, Oregon.
Karelia Stetz-Waters grew up in Oregon and holds a BA in Comparative Literature from Smith College as well as an MA in English from the University of Oregon. She is a full-time instructor of technical writing, composition, and literature, as well as the English department chair at Linn-Benton Community College. Being a “mild-mannered English teacher and a good Lutheran girl at heart,” she first considered publishing the thriller/lesbian romance The Admirer (Sapphire Books, 2013)—her “slutty book”—under a pseudonym but was assured by friends and colleagues that trying to hide her identity would do more harm than good. Winter 2014 will see the publication of the sequel The Purveyor. Ooligan Press has acquired Karelia’s coming-of-age novel tentatively titled Forgive Me If I’ve Told You This Before, scheduled to be published in fall 2014. Her short story “The Gold Star Question” is part of First Time (Ed. Bud Smith, CreateSpace, 2013), an anthology of essays, stories, and poems about lost virginity. Her serial novel The Eastbank Killer is published in installments on The PDXX Collective’s website. Karelia is also a reviewer for The Lesbrary, a lesbian book review blog. She lives in Albany, Oregon, with her wife Fay.
Kelly Williams Brown
A self-proclaimed writer of “lots of things,” Kelly Williams Brown has produced columns for multiple newspapers, created advertising copy for local businesses, and helped plan a live-action version of the computer game Oregon Trail. She is the author of Adulting: How to Become A Grown-Up in 468 Easy(ish) Steps, a how-to guide for twenty-somethings available from Grand Central Publishing. Adulting has received attention from a number of media outlets including The New York Times, The Today Show, The Wall Street Journal, Cosmopolitan, Publisher’s Weekly and Vogue. Helpful tips in Adulting include how to choose, decorate, and clean an apartment, advice on selecting and purchasing a used car, and a handy flowchart to determine how many drinks you should consume at your next company event. Adulting has also been optioned for a TV adaptation to be produced by J.J. Abrams. Kelly resides in Portland, Oregon.
Stacey Wallace Benefiel
Stacey Wallace Benefiel is the author of several Young Adult novels, including the Zellie Wells trilogy, the Day of Sacrifice series, Found, and Crossing. She has also written a collection of humorous essays, The Toilet Business, and multiple short stories. Occasionally, Stacey writes under the pen names S.W. Benefiel or Reina Stowe, but this is not a secret. The author has chosen to self-publish in order to get her books into the hands of readers, which she writes about on her blog. Stacey currently lives in Beaverton, Oregon, in an orange house with her husband and two children.
While some people write in journals to keep track of their days and to help them preserve memories, Emi Lenox draws. Based out of Portland, Oregon, and known for her autobiographical comic EmiTown, Emi Lenox is a comic creator and freelance cartoonist. Emi’s love for comics began at an early age and only intensified over the years. Her career began with internships at TopShelf and Periscope Studio, where her mentors encouraged her to transform her sketch diary into a webcomic. After meeting Eric Stephenson, publisher at Image Comics, at Emerald City in 2010 and giving him mini comics, Emi was given the opportunity to transform her webcomic into a book. Released in 2011, EmiTown is a collection of comics that detail Emi Lenox’s everyday life. Sometimes told through metaphors, superheroes, and the Army Cats, EmiTown depicts the everyday successes and failures of a woman in her 20’s. In 2012, EmiTown Vol. 2 was released, this time covering a two-year time span involving heartbreak, the loss of a job, and the excitement of her rising career. Emi Lenox’s work has been featured in Madman by Mike Allred and Sweet Tooth by Jeff Lemire.
Becky Hawkins has an angel on her shoulder–well, sometimes.The Portland writer’s webcomic features postcards of her daily (mis)adventures in life, many times depicting her trusty sidekick, Shoulder Angel. Often featured in issues of Strumpet, Becky’s comics are also available on her comic journal, French Toast Comix. Becky’s first mini comic, “Taking License,” as well as “Same Ship, Different Day,” can be viewed on her website, beckyhawkins.com. In addition to comics, Becky works at the Northwest Children’s Theater and School, and is available for hire for special announcements and caricatures.
Jessica Glenn started MindBuck Media in January of 2005 and has established relationships with a wide range of media sources including radio, television, print media, publishing houses, editors, authors and more. A squirrel whisperer, mother of three teens, musician, inventor, and writer, Jessica is also an obsessive researcher and mischievous at times, too. She is happy to speak to authors about the publicity process and strongly feels that there must be a natural fit between author and publicity team.
Prior to agenting, Sandra served six years in the US Marine Corps, worked in the marketing department of a publishing company, and made a living as a freelance writer for nearly a decade. Sandra represents a strong list of award-winning novelists, highly regarded memoirists, and high profile non-fiction authors. She is a member of the Association of Authors’ Representatives (AAR), and is currently only open to new clients by referral, or via personal meeting at conferences or industry events.
Holly Lorincz met Chip MacGregor when he became the agent for her first novel. Now she works for MacGregor Literary as an editing and publishing consultant and Chip’s assistant. Holly has a degree in journalism and a Masters of Arts with a focus in literature, writing and communications. She has served as the editor of a literary magazine and then a nationally recognized instructor, teaching literature, journalism, speech and writing at the high school and college level.