Jack McDevitt

Jack McDevitt has been described by Stephen King as “the logical heir to Isaac Asimov and Arthur C. Clarke.” He is the author of twenty-two novels, eleven of which have been Nebula finalists, and more than eighty short stories. Seeker won the Nebula for best novel in 2007. In 2003, Omega received the John W. Campbell Memorial Award for best science fiction novel. He won the Georgia Writers’ Association Lifetime Achievement Award in 2013. His first novel, The Hercules Text, won a special Philip K. Dick Award in 1986. He has received various other honors. Most recently, the International Astronomical Union named an asteroid for him.

A best-of collection of his stories is available in Cryptic, published by Subterranean Press.

McDevitt’s most recent books are Coming Home, an Alex Benedict novel, and Thunderbird, both from Ace. Alex and his partner Chase Kolpath are antiquity dealers living in the far future. They specialize in solving historical mysteries. Another popular character has been Priscilla Hutchins, a starship captain during the tempestuous early years of interstellar flight. She is usually caught up with unexpected discoveries.

A Philadelphia native, McDevitt had a varied career before becoming a writer. He’s been a naval officer, an English teacher, a customs officer, and a taxi driver. He has also conducted leadership and management seminars for the U.S. Customs Service. He is married to the former Maureen McAdams, and resides in Brunswick, GA, where he keeps a weather eye on hurricanes.


Jessica Vanderpol

Jessica VanderpolJessica Vanderpol is an artist who specializes in children’s illustrations, sequential art (a fancy term for comics), and fine art in the fantasy/science fiction genres. From a young age, she’s been fixated on capturing the comical nature of cats on paper, and created dozens of stories featuring her feline friends (she still has all those stories stored in a box on her shelf). Since then, she’s added fantasy and science fiction illustration to her repertoire, including fantastical dragons, focused character studies, and stellar space girls.

Jessica employs a variety of mediums from project to project, applying the concept of “matching medium to subject”. She primarily uses watercolors and ink for children’s illustrations and fantasy art, creating a softer, earthier feel. For science fiction pieces, she prefers the diversity available through digital mediums to open windows into the future. Recently, she has added oil painting to her skillset, and is reveling in the rich, deep hues that it offers.

Jessica currently teaches art classes at the D’Art Center in Norfolk, VA. When she is not in the classroom, you can find her with a cup of tea at her drafting table, diligently supervised by her art director (her cat). You can find Jessica’s work at jessicavanderpol.com


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.


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.


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.


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.


Nancy Northcott

Nancy Northcott grew up immersed in comic books, speculative fiction, history, and YA romance. Now she combines the fast action, high stakes, and romance she loves in the books she writes. Library Journal gave her debut novel, Renegade, a starred review, calling it “genre fiction at its best.”

She’s currently writing two speculative fiction series. The Light Mage Wars paranormal romances feature mages fighting ghouls and demons in south Georgia near the Okefenokee Swamp, and the Boar King’s Honor trilogy is historical fantasy about the disappearance of Richard III’s nephews, the Princes in the Tower.

Nancy has given presentations on the Wars of the Roses and King Richard III to university classes studying Shakespeare’s play about that king. She has also taught American Studies at the college level. Her most popular course was on science fiction, fantasy, and society.

For more information, visit her website, NancyNorthcott.com.


Wayland Smith

Wayland Smith is the pen name for a native Texan who has lived in Massachusetts, New York, Washington DC, and presently makes his home in Virginia. His rather unlikely list of jobs includes private investigator, comic book shop owner, ring crew for a circus (then he ran away from the circus and joined home), deputy sheriff, writer, and freelance stagehand. Wayland has one novel out so far, In My Brother’s Name, and short stories in the anthologies This Mutant Life: Bad Company, HeroNet Files, Vol 1, SNAFU: An Anthology of Military Horror, and Legends of the Dragon, among many others. A black belt in shao lin kung fu, he is also a fan of comic books, reading, writing, and various computer games (I’ll shut Civ down in one more turn. Really.). He lives with a beautiful woman who was crazy enough to marry him, and the spirits of a few wonderful dogs that have passed on.