Tangent Artists

In a world… where brother fought brother, elf fought dwarf, narwhal fought robot, teacup piglet fought guy with a horse mask, one webcomic company rose above the sea of internet memes to form a single unit—a unit that called themselves… The Avengers. But as it turns out “The Avengers” was already taken, so they renamed themselves: Tangent Artists. Thus was the creation of two comic series: The macabre comedy, Skeleton Crew and the Swords & Sorcery & Sarcasm series, CRIT! They recently expanded into gaming books with their best-selling Guild Guides starting with The Handbook for Saucy Bards.


Philippa Ballantine

New Zealand born fantasy writer and podcaster Philippa (Pip) Ballantine is the author of the Books of the Order and the Shifted World series. She is also the co-author with her husband Tee Morris of the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences novels as well as Social Media for Writers. Her awards include an Airship, a Parsec, the Steampunk Chronicle Reader’s Choice, the RT Reviewer’s Choice Award for steampunk, and a Sir Julius Vogel. She currently resides in Manassas, VA with her husband, daughter, and a furry clowder of cats.


Chris Semtner

The curator of the Edgar Allan Poe Museum, Chris Semtner has written several books on Edgar Allan Poe and appeared on BBC 4’s Edgar Allan Poe: Love, Death, and Women and the Military Channel’s History: Facts vs. Fiction. The New York Times called his Library of Virginia exhibit, Poe: Man, Myth, or Monster, “provocative” and “a playful, robust exhibit.” Semtner’s paintings have entered numerous public collections including the Virginia Historical Society and the University of Maryland. He has exhibited paintings at Viktor Wynd Fine Art, London; Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia; and the Science Museum of Virginia, Richmond.


Christopher L. Smith

A native Texan by birth (if not geography), Chris moved “home” as soon as he could.

Attending Texas A+M​, he learned quickly that there was more to college than drinking beer and going to football games. He relocated to San Antonio, attending SAC and UTSA, graduating in late 2000 with a BA in Literature.

While there, he also met a wonderful lady who somehow found him to be funny, charming, and worth marrying. (She has since changed her mind on the funny and charming.)

Chris began writing in 2012​. His​​​ short stories​ have appeared in several anthologies​​: ​ “Bad Blood and Old Silver'”​(Luna’s Children: Stranger Worlds Anthology, Dark Oak Press​); “Isaac Crane and the Ancient Hunger” (Dark Corners Anthology, Fantom Enterprises); “200 Miles to Huntsville” (Black Tide Rising, Baen Books); and “What Manner of Fool” (Sha’Daa: Inked, Copper Dog Publishing).

His two cats allow him, his wife, their three kids, and two dogs to reside outside of San Antonio.


E. G. Gaddess

E. G. GaddessE. G. Gaddess is the pen name of a local author who has put pen to paper for as long as she can remember. Her first steampunk novel, The Mechanics of Life and Limb, will be out in April 2017, from White Cat Publications, and her third Victorian Vampire novel, Dhampyr Legend, is slated for publication late in 2017, from DreamPunk Press.


Darin Kennedy

Darin Kennedy, born and raised in Winston-Salem, NC, is a graduate of Wake Forest University and Bowman Gray School of Medicine. After completing family medicine residency in the mountains of Virginia, he served eight years as a United States Army physician and started his first novel in the sands of northern Iraq.

His first published novel, The Mussorgsky Riddle, was born from a fusion of two of his lifelong loves: classical music and world mythology. The sequel, The Stravinsky Intrigue, continues those same themes. This story will culminate in The Tchaikovsky Finale, due out Novemebr 2017.

His contemporary fantasy novel, Pawn’s Gambit, meets at the intersection of superheroes, magic, and chess.

His short stories can be found in numerous anthologies and magazines, and the best, particularly those about a certain necromancer for hire, are collected for your reading pleasure under Darin’s own imprint, 64Square Publishing.

Doctor by day and novelist by night, he writes and practices medicine in Charlotte, NC. When not engaged in either of the above activities, he has been known to strum the guitar, enjoy a bite of sushi, and rumor has it he even sleeps on occasion.

Find him online at darinkennedy.com.


David A. Tatum

David A. Tatum was born in Ithaca, NY, the son of a fashion designer and a book-collecting librarian who later became a spy. By the time he was four years old, he’d mastered how to spell the word “cat,” which made inevitable his decision to become an author. Moving to Washington DC in order to keep his parents company, he started training in kenpo by the age of seven. Sadly, after failing to achieve his blackbelt despite twenty years of training, he gave up hopes of a career in martial arts and resumed his love of writing. By the time he was in high school, he joined a national organization dedicated to adventure and exploration—later becoming a chapter president—with the goal of using it to identify a route into the center of the Earth. Unfortunately, the Suffolk, VA caves he explored in order to find this discovery failed to provide this route. When his father died, he inherited a large library that there was no space for in his home and a life-threatening dental condition. He spent the next year and a half dealing with both. When he found that a degree in history offered him no local job opportunities better than your average fast food joint, he decided on a career that typically earns even less money: Professional writing. Now he’s trying to juggle writing and publishing far too many series of books at once in a variety of genre, predominantly fantasy and science fiction.


GB MacRae

GB has been weaving stories from a very young age, and has been writing formally for 26 years. Writing is her passion, but she also has other creative pursuits such as costuming, folkloric dance, and creating art. For many years she was part of a company that made costumes and accessories specializing in Ren garb and folkloric belly dance. She’s also been a freelance artist for local companies, and for individuals. She currently lives in the snow belt near Lake Ontario with her husband, daughter, and fur babies.


Harry (Jack) Heckel

Harry Heckel has written role-playing games and fiction for two decades. His latest work is The Dark Lord from Harper Voyager Impulse as part of the writing team of Jack Heckel, in which Avery, grad student at the Mysterium University, takes the role of The Dark Lord. When things go wrong with his experiment, he joins forces with the same adventurers who defeated him and runs into the tropes of epic fantasy. This is the second series produced by Jack Heckel and it follows the well-reviewed Charming Tales, collected in two books, A Fairy-tale Ending and The Pitchfork of Destiny. Harry has also written Space Wolf novels for Black Library with his friend, Jeff Smith, under the name Lee Lightner, and he has two series, The Crimson Hawks Adventures and The Krueger Chronicles, under his own name. Additionally, he has a novella, “Hidden Strengths,” in HeroNet Files, Book 1.

Harry has multiple role-playing game credits for White Wolf Game Studio and has written material for the Star Wars roleplaying game from West End Games and Star Trek from Last Unicorn Games. His latest roleplaying book is Sothis Ascends for Mummy: The Curse and he has done game fiction for CMON, notably for Arcadia Quest: Inferno.

He tries to write while balancing the obligations of his day job. You can find him at both www.harryheckel.com and www.jackheckel.com. Every November, he religiously participates in Nanowrimo (National Novel Writing Month). He lives in Mechanicsvile, VA with his wife, daughter, and two cats.


Jim Bernheimer

Jim lives in Chesapeake, VA with his wife Kim, and daughters Laura and Marissa. By day, he works as a Systems Administrator for the government and runs his own side Information Technology consulting firm, EJB Networking, which can be found at www.ejbnetworking.com.

Blessed (or cursed depending on your point of view) with an overactive imagination, Jim has long been a fan of science fiction and fantasy. Seeking to put that imagination to use, he has started to write his own original works in hopes of making his mark on the literary world.

Now a publisher, Jim has started Amber Cove Publishing to help make other authors’ dreams come true.