Author bios 2018

Don’t see an author’s name or photo?  Please check back as we are adding authors and photos in batches as we receive them.

Gigi Amateau is a children’s book writer and community advocate. She is the author of seven books for children and teens, including Claiming Georgia Tate, Chancey of the Maury River, Come August, Come Freedom, and Two for Joy. She is a recipient of a Theresa Pollak Prize for Excellence in the Arts and a Library of Virginia’s People’s Choice Fiction Award.  She also reviews children’s literature for the Richmond Times-Dispatch. Visit her online at (Middle Grade and YA fiction, BBGB Tales for Kids, 4/21, 12:30 PM)

Bert Ashe is Professor of English and American Studies at the University of Richmond, where he teaches and writes about African-American literature and culture, black hair, jazz, and post-blackness. His book Twisted: My Dreadlock Chronicles was a finalist for a Virginia Literary Award, and he’s currently working on a book on the varieties of black hair statements in the U.S. and beyond. (University of Richmond Writers, The Pit and Peel, 4/21, 6:30 PM  – 7:30 PM)


Kristi Tuck Austin waded New York City sewers, ran from trains, and slid through a water pipe to the Harlem River while researching her novel. She’s celebrated Thanksgiving in the Paris catacombs, wading (again) and dining by candlelight. In her daily life, which is dry and aboveground, she’s founder of an author assistant agency and member of James River Writers. (Fiction of the Hunt, 4/21, 6:30 – 7:30 PM)

Hannah Barnaby worked as a children’s book editor, bookseller, and reviewer before becoming the first children’s writer-in-residence at the Boston Public Library. Her first novel, Wonder Show, was a Morris Award Finalist and her second, Some of the Parts, received a starred review from Publisher’s Weekly. She made her double picture book debut in 2017 with Bad Guy (Simon & Schuster) and Garcia & Colette Go Exploring (Putnam). She lives in Charlottesville. Visit her online at (Picture Books, BBGB Tales for Kids, 4/21, 11 AM)

Karen A. Chase is an author and photographer, and owner of 224design, a branding and design studio. Now represented by Roger Williams Agency, she is seeking representation for two novels in two genres–historical fiction (Carrying Independence) and southern upmarket women’s fiction (Decoys). Her first book, Bonjour 40: A Paris Travel Log, garnered seven independent publishing awards. Originally from Calgary, Canada, Karen is now chasing histories from Richmond, VA. Connect at and on Twitter @KarenAChase. (Fiction of the Hunt, 4/21, 6:30 – 7:30 PM)

Ben Cleary has written extensively for a variety of media, including print, web, video, and radio. His journalism has aired on All Things Considered and appeared in The New York Times and Richmond’s Style Weekly. His creative biography of Stonewall Jackson is forthcoming from Hachette Book Group. (Life Stories, Belmont Branch Library , 4/21, 5 – 6 PM)

Angela Dominguez is the author and illustrator of several books for children including Maria Had a Little Llama, which received the American Library Association Pura Belpré Illustration Honor. In 2016, she received her second Pura Belpré Honor for her illustrations in Mango, Abuela, and Me (written by Meg Medina). Her debut middle grade novel, Stella Díaz Has Something to Say, was published January 2018. Visit her online at (Picture Books, BBGB Tales for Kids, 4/21, 11 AM)

Kathryn Erskine is the author of six children’s novels including National Book Award winner, Mockingbird, Jane Addams Peace Award honor book Seeing Red, and most recently, The Incredible Magic of Being, and a picture book, Mama Africa: How Miriam Makeba Spread Hope with her Song. She draws on life stories and world events in her writing and is currently working on several more novels and picture books. Visit her online at (Middle Grade and YA fiction, BBGB Tales for Kids, 4/21, 12:30 PM)

Helen Montague Foster is a retired psychiatrist and writer, formerly a clinical professor in the department of Psychiatry at Virginia Commonwealth University, where she attended medical school and completed a psychiatric residency. Her poems have appeared in JAMA, the Pharos, Rattle, Hektoen International, and Big River Poetry Review. (Fiction Factory, Ellwood Thompson, 4/21 2:00- 3:00 PM)

Foust is a writer, printmaker, and cartoonist who lives in Richmond’s Forest Hill neighborhood with one husband and three dogs. Her story collection “Sins of Omission” and her cartoon collection “Six of One, Half-dozen of the Other” are available from her publisher Tidal Press or via any bookseller. (Outside In Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, 4/20 6 – 7 pm)

Jamie Fueglein holds an MFA in fiction from VCU where he currently teaches Focused Inquiry. He has taught writing classes at VCU, U of R, the Visual Arts Center, and with the Podium Foundation. He’s taught comp, short fiction, and novel workshops, has edited many books of fiction and non-fiction, and writes when he’s not reading. (Fiction Factory, Ellwood Thompson, 4/21 2:00 – 3:00 PM)

Lenore Gay, a Licensed Professional Counselor, worked in agencies, psychiatric hospitals, maintained a private practice, and faculty at Rehabilitation Counseling Department, VCU. Virginia Center of the Creative Arts (VCCA) awarded her two writing fellowships. Her essay “Mistresses of Magic” was published In Praise of Our Teachers (Beacon Press). “The Hobo” won first place in Style Weekly’s annual fiction contest. Volunteer reader, editor at VCU’s Blackbird, Online Journal. Her novel, Shelter of Leaves, published 8/16. (Fiction Factory, Ellwood Thompson, 4/21 2:00- 3:00 PM)

Susan Hankla is a Richmond writer, whose debut poetry collection, Clinch River, (Groundhog Poetry Press LLC) is cause for celebration.  Burning Deck Press published her poetry chapbook. A recipient of a Virginia Commission grant for Fiction and fellowships to Virginia Center for Creative Arts, she is published in literary magazines and journals. (Pint of View Poets, Belmont Library, 4/21, 2 – 3 PM)

K.A. (Katharine Armstrong) Herndon is the executive director of James River Writers, a nonprofit that connects, inspires, and educates writers of all kinds. She wrote her first novel in 9th grade in notebooks she shared with her friends, and she still has the friends and the notebooks. Once upon a time, she taught middle school, high school, and community college, but she didn’t like the homework. Katharine’s work has been published by RVA indie press Sink/Swim in The Great Richmond Zombie Book and appears in the anthology River Town, edited by Eric L. Douglas, and the Richmond-based anthology River City Secrets. (Fiction of the Hunt, 4/21, 6:30 – 7:30 PM)

Logan Hill is a poet and arts educator currently living between Harrisonburg and Richmond. He holds a B.A. in English from James Madison University, an M.F.A. in Poetry from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and spent his formative years as a young professional male vocalist at The American Boychoir School, which he attended from 2002-2004. (Pint of View Poets, Belmont Library, 4/21, 2 – 3 PM)

Evans Hopkins is author of Life After Life: A Story of Rage and Redeumption, which recounts his experience as an African American coming of age in the Jim Crow South, involvement in the Black Panther party, the disillusionment that led to his imprisonment, his work as a civil rights militant, and his journey toward redemption and a successful writing career. (Life Stories, Belmont Branch Library , 4/21, 5 – 6 PM)



Jean Huets is author of With Walt Whitman: Himself, acclaimed as “a book of marvels” by poet Steve Scafidi and “a Whitmanian feast” by scholar Ed Folsom. Her writing is in The New York Times, The Millions, and Civil War Monitor. She co-founded Circling Rivers, which publishes nonfiction and poetry. (Life Stories, Belmont Branch Library , 4/21, 5 – 6 PM)

Derek Kannemeyer is a South African-born, London-raised Richmonder, whose writing has appeared in publications from Fiction International to Rolling Stone. His 2017 credits include poems in Silver Birch Press, Man In The Street, The Wild Word, Sand, Stone Bridge Cafe and Poetry Virginia Review. In January, he published a book of light verse (An Alphabestiary), and he is now awaiting publication of a group of poems called “The Others,” which won the Blue Nib Literary Magazine’s most recent chapbook contest. (Pint of View Poets, Belmont Library, 4/21, 2 – 3 PM)

Dean King is the award winning and bestselling author of Skeletons on the Zahara and The Feud, which the WSJ called “popular history as it ought to be written.” He is the chief storyteller of two History Channel documentaries and a producer of its unscripted series Hatfields and McCoys. (Foreign and Faraway Lands, Belmont Branch Library 4/21 3:30 PM – 4:30 PM)

during the Second Street Festival in Richmond, Sunday October 5, 2014.

Gregory Kimbrell is the author of The Primitive Observatory (Southern Illinois University Press, 2016), winner of the 2014 Crab Orchard Series in Poetry First Book Award. His poems appear in Manticore—Hybrid Writing from Hybrid Identities, Alcyone, Blackbird, and elsewhere. His magnetic sci-fi/horror haiku can be found at Voices, Babes of Carytown, 4/20, 6 – 7 PM)

Grant Kittrell is the Poetry Editor of Flock Literary Journal. His work has appeared in Magma Poetry, The Carolina Quarterly, The Common, Construction and The Normal School, among others, and his collection of poems, Let’s Sit Down, Figure This Out is now out from Groundhog Poetry Press. He currently teaches at Lynchburg College and this year will serve as the Fall 2018 Writer-in-Resident at Randolph College. He lives and writes in Roanoke, VA. (Pint of View Poets, Belmont Library, 4/21, 2 – 3 PM)

Lana Krumwiede  began her writing career by creating stories for children’s magazines. Her first novel, Freakling (Candlewick, 2012) was named a finalist for SCBWI’s Crystal Kite Member’s Choice Award and an honor book for the International Reading Association’s Intermediate Fiction Award. Freakling was followed by two more novels, Archon (2013) and True Son (2015), and a picture book Just Itzy (2015). Lana is also the editor of River City Secrets: Stories from Richmond (2016). Visit her online at (Picture Books, BBGB Tales for Kids, 4/21, 11 AM)

Nathan Alling Long lives in Philadelphia and teaches at Stockton University.  His work appears on NPR and in various journals, include Tin House, Glimmer Train, Story Quarterly, and Crab Orchard Review.  His fifty-story collection The Origin of Doubt (Press 53) is being released Spring 2018.  He can be found at  (Queer Voices, Babes of Carytown, 4/20, 6 – 7 PM)

Gayla Mills is formerly a writing professor. She has published in Spry, Prairie Wolf Press, Skirt!, The Truth about the Fact, and more. Her essay collection Finite won the RED OCHRE LiT Chapbook contest. Also a musician, she is currently writing a how-to book, Returning to Music After 40. (Outside In, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, 4/20 6 – 7 pm)

Shahan Mufti is a journalist and a professor of journalism at the University of Richmond. Shahan’s first book, The Faithful Scribe: A Story of Islam, Pakistan, Family, and War, is a work of literary non-fiction based on the years that he spent as an American reporter in his parent’s native country, Pakistan, covering the American-led war in the Af-Pak region. He is currently writing his next book, about the 1977 Hanafi Siege of Washington, DC. (University of Richmond Writers, The Pit and Peel, 4/21, 6:30 PM  – 7:30 PM)

Mil Norman-Risch has attended conferences such as Bread Loaf and AROHO and summer residencies such as the VCCA and SLS Lithuania in Vilnius. Her credentials include Writers@Work’s First Prize for Fiction and publication in Quarterly West, Willow Springs, White Pelican Review, Valparaiso, Common Ground, Dogwood and other journals. (Outside In, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, 4/20 6 – 7 pm) 

Elizabeth Outka writes on odd combinations of literature and popular culture. Her first book, Consuming Traditions (Oxford), investigates the marketing of authenticity in the early 20th century. Her forthcoming book, Raising the Dead (Columbia), explores how one of the deadliest plagues in history—the 1918-1919 influenza pandemic—seems to disappear from cultural memory but actually infuses modernist literature and helps fuel the emergence of zombies and the popularity of séances. (University of Richmond Writers, The Pit and Peel, 4/21, 6:30 PM  – 7:30 PM)

Anne Marie Pace’s books include Groundhug Day (Disney-Hyperion, 2017, illustrated by Christopher Denise); Pigloo (Henry Holt, 2016, illustrated by Lorna Hussey); and the Vampirina Ballerina series (Disney-Hyperion, illustrated by LeUyen Pham), the inspiration for the hit Disney Junior animated series Vampirina. New this spring is Busy-Eyed Day (Beach Lane Books, illustrated by Frann Preston-Gannon). Find her at,, and @annemariepace. (Picture Books, BBGB Tales for Kids, 4/21, 11 AM)

Cheryl Pallant has authored several award-winning books. Her recently published books include Her Body Listening, a poetry collection, Ginseng Tango, a memoir about living in South Korea, and Writing and the Body in Motion (due out Spring 2018). Poetry, fiction, and nonfiction have been anthologized in journals throughout the United States and abroad. She is a Theresa Pollak winner, Bechtel Award Finalist, twice received a NEH grant with Richmond Arts Council, and teaches at University of Richmond. (Foreign and Faraway Lands, Belmont Branch Library 4/21 3:30 PM – 4:30 PM)

Virginia Pye is the author of two award-winning novels, Dreams of the Red Phoenix and River of Dust, and the short story collection, Shelf Life of Happiness (2018). Her essays are in Literary Hub, The New York Times, The Rumpus, and elsewhere. (Foreign and Faraway Lands, Belmont Branch Library 4/21 3:30 PM – 4:30 PM)

David L. Robbins is the NY Times bestselling author of 16 novels. He is the founder or co-founder of three local non-profits for writing communities. The Virginia Commission for the Arts has named him one of the two most influential literary artists in the state for the last 50 years. (Life Stories, Belmont Branch Library , 4/21, 5 – 6 PM)


Madelyn Rosenberg spent a dozen years writing about colorful, real-life characters as a reporter in Southwest Virginia. Now she makes up characters of her own. She lives with her family in Arlington, Va., and is the author of 10 books for children of all ages. Her middle-grade novel, THIS IS JUST A TEST, written with her friend Wendy Wan-Long Shang, received a Sydney Taylor honor and was a Junior Library Guild selection. Visit her online at (Middle Grade and YA fiction, BBGB Tales for Kids, 4/21, 12:30 PM)

Elizabeth A. Sheehan is a cultural anthropologist whose writing centers on memory, place, and history. She has taught at Johns Hopkins University, American University and the University of Richmond, where she also directed an arts integration program. Her work has appeared in the Richmond Times Dispatch, Defenestration, and Boomer magazine. In, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, 4/20 6 – 7 pm)


Julietta Singh is a writer and academic who works at the intersections of postcolonial studies, feminist and queer theory, and the environmental humanities. She is the author of Unthinking Mastery: Dehumanism and Decolonial Entanglements (Duke University Press, 2017), and No Archive Will Restore You, a body memoir, which forthcoming, from Punctum Books. (University of Richmond Writers, The Pit and Peel, 4/21, 6:30 PM  – 7:30 PM)

Patricia Smith is the author of the novel The Year of Needy Girls. Her nonfiction has appeared  most recently in the anthologies Older Queer Voices and One Teacher in Ten in the New Millennium: LGBT Teachers Discuss What Has Gotten Better…and What Hasn’t. Her work has also appeared in Salon; Broad Street; Prime Number, Gris-Gris, The Tusculum Review, So to Speak, and 9 Lives: A Life in Ten Minutes Anthology. She teaches writing and American literature at the Appomattox Regional Governor’s School for the Arts and Technology in Petersburg, VA. (Queer Voices, Babes of Carytown, 4/20, 6 – 7 PM)

Kris Spisak wrote her first book, Get a Grip on your Grammar: 250 Writing and Editing Reminders for the Curious or Confused (Career Press, 2017), with a goal to help writers of all kinds sharpen their craft. Kris is on the board of directors of James River Writers, the co-founder of Midlothian Web Solutions, and is also pursuing the publication of her first novel. Connect with Kris at (Fiction of the Hunt, 4/21, 6:30 – 7:30 PM)

Jason Tesauro is a writer/photographer/showman with three books, four cameras, and five children. Author of The Modern Gentleman series, he’s a frequent contributor of lifestyle content for Esquire, The New York Times and The Washington Post. His work was included in Best Food Writing 2016 and awarded Honorable Mention in the 2017 Chromatic Awards.  (Foreign and Faraway Lands, Belmont Branch Library 4/21 3:30 PM – 4:30 PM) 

Pam Webber teaches at Shenandoah University where she’s earned several teaching/service awards. In 2000, the Virginia Nurses Association honored her as one of 50 Pioneer Nurses for the century. Her debut novel, The Wiregrass, won multiple awards and was nominated as an IndieNext book. A second novel is in progress.  (Fiction Factory, Ellwood Thompson, 4/21 2 PM – 3 PM)

A.B. (Anne) Westrick is the author of Brotherhood (Penguin Random House 2013), a YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults pick, and winner of the Jefferson Cup, Housatonic, Jane Addams Honor, and NCSS Notable Trade Book Awards. She teaches in Western Connecticut State University’s low-residency MFA program in writing, blogs monthly about the craft of writing, and lives near Richmond, VA. Visit her online at (Middle Grade and YA fiction, BBGB Tales for Kids, 4/21, 12:30 PM)

Michele Young-Stone is the author of Lost in the Beehive (2018), Above Us Only Sky (2015), and The Handbook for Lightning Strike Survivors (2010), three vividly imagined novels. At age thirty, Michele decided to quit teaching and write the book she’d been dreaming of writing since she was seven years old. So far, she’s up to three with more in the hopper. A Richmond native, Michele currently resides with her husband and son in the Outer Banks of North Carolina. (Queer Voices, Babes of Carytown, 4/20, 6 – 7 PM)