Mikkel Aaland is a professional photographer and the author of 12 best selling books on digital photography, including Photoshop RAW, Shooting Digital, the first Adobe Lightroom Adventure (Iceland) edition, and the second Adobe Lightroom Adventure (Tasmania) edition. Mikkel has also been a popular workshop leader in the United States and Europe, and creates training videos in collaboration with Lynda.com and Adobe Press. He is the co-host of the Nordic Light International Festival of Photography held every spring in Kristiansund, Norway. His non-technical books include, “County Fair Portraits,” (for which he made an appearance on Late Night with David Letterman) “Sweat” (an illustrated tour of international bathing customs, culminating a three-year project), “The Sword of Heaven,” “Pilgrimage to Kailash” and a recently published memoir, “The River in My Backyard.” Aaland is currently based in both San Francisco and Telemark, Norway. His web site is mikkelaaland.com
Laurie Fox joined Linda Chester and Associates Literary Agency in 1989, and is their West Coast Associate. A graduate of the University of California at Santa Cruz (Writing and Theatre Arts), she is a published author of fiction and poetry, including Sexy Hieroglyphics(Chronicle Books); and two novels, My Sister from the Black Lagoon (starred Publishers Weekly review; San Francisco Chronicle bestseller) and The Lost Girls, both published by Simon & Schuster. She represents books in the areas of literary fiction, memoir/biography, popular culture/quirky humor, upmarket spirituality, and cutting-edge fiction.
Mary Mackey is the bestselling author of fourteen novels, including two novels about the American Civil War (The Notorious Mrs. Winston and The Widow’s War) and four novels which describe how the Goddess-worshiping people of Prehistoric Europe fought off patriarchal nomad invaders (The Village of Bones, The Year The Horses Came, The Horses at the Gate, and The Fires of Spring). Mary’s novels have been praised by Marion Zimmer Bradley, Pat Conroy, Thomas Moore, Marija Gimbutas, Marge Piercy, and Theodore Roszak for their historical accuracy, inventiveness, literary grace, vividness, and storytelling magic. They have made The New York Times and San Francisco Chronicle Bestseller Lists, been translated into twelve foreign languages and sold over a million and a half copies. (more…)
Janis Cooke Newman has a wealth of literary experience in both fiction and non-fiction. She is the author of A Master Plan for Rescue, a magical novel about the surprising acts of heroism that can be inspired by love. She is also the author of Mary, a historical novel about Mary Todd Lincoln. Mary was chosen by USA Today as the best historical fiction of 2006 and was a finalist for the LA Times First Fiction award. She is also the author of The Russian Word for Snow, a memoir about adopting her son from a Moscow orphanage. Both books are available in paperback.
In addition to her books Newman is the founder of the Lit Camp writers conference.
Janis Cooke Newman’s second novel, A Master Plan for Rescue was released from Riverhead in July 2015. The SF Chronicle said it “balances beautifully on the thin line between wishful thinking and reason, between the imagination and the intellect,” and called it “magical” and “dazzling.” (more…)
Isabel Allende won worldwide acclaim when her bestselling first novel, The House of the Spirits, was published in 1982. In addition to launching her career, the book, which grew out of a farewell letter to her dying grandfather, also established her as a feminist force in Latin America’s male-dominated literary world.
She has since written 20 more works, including Of Love and Shadows, Eva Luna, Stories of Eva Luna, The Infinite Plan, Daughter of Fortune, Portrait in Sepia, a trilogy for young readers (City of Beasts, Kingdom of the Golden Dragon, and Forest of Pygmies), Zorro, Ines of My Soul, Island Beneath the Sea, Maya’s Notebook, Ripper and her latest book, The Japanese Lover. Books of nonfiction include Aphrodite, a humorous collection of recipes and essays, and three memoirs: My Invented Country, Paula (a bestseller that documents Allende’s daughter’s illness and death, as well as her own life), and The Sum of Our Days. (more…)
Debbie Goelz is a refugee from Hollywood where she served for ten years as a financial executive for such companies as Universal Pictures, Dino de Laurentiis and Jim Henson Productions. During her last position as the Vice President of Finance for Jim Henson Productions she met her future husband. Her film career began and ended with her puppeteering a chicken during the closing scene in Muppet Treasure Island. Her YA humorous fantasy written under the pseudonym Brittanie Charmintine, Mermaids and the Vampires Who Love Them, won a Watty award in 2014. She lives in rural Marin County with her husband and dog. Her two children have abandoned her to seek a college education in New York.
Jill K. Robinson is an award-winning freelance journalist and photographer. Her articles have been featured in the San Francisco Chronicle, AFAR, National Geographic Traveler, Every Day With Rachael Ray, Coastal Living, Robb Report, ISLANDS, Saturday Evening Post, San Francisco magazine, American Way, Celebrated Living, Delta Sky, and more. She has received a Solas Award, ALTO Award, and Society of American Travel Writers awards for travel writing, as well as the Bill Muster award for photography. Her essays have been published in Travelers’ Tales books: The Best Travel Writing, The Best Women’s Travel Writing, and Leave the Lipstick Take the Iguana. dangerjillrobinson.com
Rita Lakin was a pioneer, a female script writer in the early 1960s when Hollywood Television was exclusively male. For years, in creative meetings she was literally the only woman in the room. In this breezy but heartfelt remembrance, Lakin exposes us to a long-forgotten time when women were not considered worthy or welcome at the creative table. Widowed with three young children, she talked herself into a secretarial job at Universal Studios in 1962, despite being unable to type or take dictation. But with guts, skill and humor she rose from secretary to free-lancer, to staff writer, to producer, to executive producer and show-runner, meeting hundreds of famous and infamous show biz legends along the way during her long and unexpected career. She introduced many women into the business and was a feminist before she even knew she was a feminist. (more…)
Herbert Gold was born in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1924. After several of his poems were accepted by literary magazines, he moved to New York at age seventeen and studied philosophy at Columbia University. While there, he befriended many Beat Generation writers, including Anaïs Nin and Allen Ginsberg. Gold won a Fulbright fellowship and moved to Paris, where he did graduate studies at the Sorbonne and worked on his first
novel, Birth of a Hero, published in 1951. Since then Gold has written more than thirty books and received several awards, including the Sherwood Anderson Award for Fiction, the Commonwealth Club Gold Medal, and the PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Literary Award. He has also taught at the University of California at Berkeley, and at Stanford, Cornell, and Harvard. (more…)
Don George has made his living as a travel writer and editor virtually since college. His first real job was as a travel writer for the San Francisco Examiner. From there he moved onto a short stint as an editor at the Examiner’s Sunday magazine, then he became the travel editor for the Examiner & Chronicle for nine years.
When the allure of cyberspace became irresistible, Don joined Salon.com and founded theirgroundbreaking travel site, Wanderlust. Then he moved on to become Global Travel Editor for Lonely Planet Publications. After an exhilarating ride there, he is now Editor at Large and Book Review Columnist for National Geographic Traveler magazine, Special Features Editor and Blogger for Gadling.com, and Editor of Geographic Expedition’s online magazine, Wanderlust: Literary Journeys for the Discerning Traveler.