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THE GEORGIA AUTHOR OF THE YEAR AWARDS

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GAYA

SEPTEMBER 2008 I $4.99 I

92

Georgia Author of the Year Nominees

45

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Annual GAYA

June 13, 2009 June KSU Center Kennesaw, Georgia

A Lifetime of Achievements Furman Bisher


our host rhubarb jones by Cheryl Miller We’re honored to welcome distinguished radio celebrity Rhubarb Jones as emcee for this special evening. But all his accolades haven’t gone to his head. Today he remains a true gentleman who loves to serve the community.

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“I came from a pretty fast-paced environment, 36 years of full-time radio and 24 years of doing morning drive at one radio station in Atlanta,” Rhubarb said. “I am told it is some kind of record. It afforded me a lot of opportunity of meeting music artist, actors, heads of state, and captains of industry.”


side the box’ has become a term perhaps over-used, but it is something I believe any artist, writer, communicator must Today Jones serves students in the Communications De- have as a creed. I also have an axiom to show up and be on time. In the communications industry it is a must. I also partment at Kennesaw think that you have to be State University, sharing prepared every day for with students how to sur“I also think that you have to be prepared your craft. I used to previve and thrive in the evevery day for your craft. I used to prepare for pare for my radio show er-changing media landscape. Along with insider my radio show and perhaps used 5% of what I and perhaps used 5% of what I had ready for that information on the radio had ready for that particular show.” particular show.” business, one of the lessons Rhubarb can teach his students is how to achieve a 4.0 grade point average like Rhubarb and his wife, Charm, have a second home in Talhe did when he achieved his Masters of Arts from Shorter lapoosa, Georgia. “I grew up there and learned about people on those streets,” Rhubarb said. “I am a big fan of the Andy College. Griffith Show. Tallapoosa is as close to Mayberry as I have “I grew up in a household that had an emphasis on educa- ever been. I like the city in small doses. The only advantage tion and I am doing my best to share with students from my I can see of living in a city like Atlanta is that you can get a experiences in broadcasting,” Rhubarb said. “I try to be more pizza at one o’clock in the morning. The city has Barnes and than a teacher. I try to coach students into giving themselves Noble book stores. Tallapoosa does not. Tallapoosa is where the gift of enlightenment. I am a believer that education is a I go to charge my batteries. My children love going out to our life-long goal. It doesn’t end with graduation. I see our cam- second home there because of the quality of life in a small pus culture becoming more and more exciting in the coming town that they don’t get in suburban East Cobb County.” years at Kennesaw State.” And Tallapoosa is also where a kid named Warren got his well-known moniker.

serving students

lessons from a legend

Growing up as a small-town boy in Tallapoosa, Rhubarb dreamed of going to law school, but in college he met Gary McKee of Atlanta’s WQXI radio station, who influenced him to change his mind and future career to broadcasting. His first radio gig was when he was a student attending West Georgia College. In February 2008, he finished up a 36-year career, with over 23 years as one of the longest running disc jockeys in the Atlanta morning market. One thing that has made Rhubarb a popular D.J. on morning radio is a philosophy he picked up as a young boy listening to Joe Rumore of WVOK in Birmingham. Joe’s audience was treated like “family,” a trademark philosophy adopted by Rhubarb early on in his career. And Rhubarb’s family has contributed to his many projects for groups, such as the March of Dimes, the Rhubarb Jones March Across Georgia for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society event, the Rhubarb Jones Celebrity Golf Classic, the Country Cares for St. Jude’s Kids, and the Jerry Lewis Labor Day Telethon for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. Since the beginning of his radio career, Rhubarb has been inspired to make a difference in his listening area after a mentor, John R. of WLAC in Nashville, taught Rhubarb to never look at radio as only a 9-to-5 job, but as a terrific opportunity to use his celebrity for good and the opportunity to help others in need.

creative advice “My advice for anyone in a creative endeavor is to think outside your comfort zone,” Rhubarb said. “‘Thinking out-

“I got the name Rhubarb in about the 6th grade when I started an argument in school band,” Rhubarb said. “An argument in baseball was coined a ‘rhubarb’ by the late baseball announcer and voice of the Brooklyn Dodgers, Red Barber. It stuck for these many years. Most people have no idea my real name is Warren.”

More about Rhubarb: Emmy Award winner (1993) Induction into the Country Music Disc Jockey Hall of Fame in Nashville (2001) Voted one of Country Music Radio’s 100 Most Influential Personalities by Radio and Records Magazine (2000) Selected “Best Radio Personality’ by Atlanta Magazine (1995) Named one of the “100 Most Powerful and Influential People in Georgia” by Georgia Trend Magazine (1995) 3 Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009


our judges

KATHY FAGAN POETRY Kathy Fagan’s newest collection is Lip (Eastern Washington UP, 2009). She is also the author of the National Poetry Series selection The Raft (Dutton, 1985), the Vassar Miller Prize winner MOVING & ST RAGE (U. of North Texas, 1999), and The Charm (Zoo, 2002). Fagan is the recipient of awards and fellowships from the Ingram Merrill Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, Ohioana Library, and the Ohio Arts Council. A former director of the M.F.A. program at Ohio State University, she is currently professor of English and editor of The Journal.

DEBRA MONROE FICTION Debra Monroe is the author of five books, including two collections of stories titled, The Source of Trouble and A Wild, Cold State, as well as two novels, Newfangled and Shambles. Her fifth book, a nonfiction piece, On the Outskirts of Normal: Forging a Family Against the Grain, is forthcoming in 2010. Her books have been widely reviewed and have won many awards, including the Flannery O’Connor Award, the John Gardner Fellowship, The Violet Crown Award, and more. Her books have appeared on “‘Best Ten” lists in Elle and Vanity Fair magazines, and in Borders Bookstores’ “Original Voices” series, and she has been nominated for the National Book Award twice. She teaches in the M.F.A. program at Southwest Texas State University and lives in Austin, Texas. TOM HAZUKA FIRST NOVEL Dr. Thomas Hazuka is the author of three novels and has published numerous short stories. He and teaches fiction writing at Central Connecticut State University. Hazuka has been credited with generating the term “flash fiction.” The new genre likely originated in James Thomas’, Denise Thomas’, and Tom Hazuka’s 1992 anthology of that title. As the editors said in their introduction, their definition of a “flash fiction” was a story that would fit on two facing pages of a typical digest-sized literary magazine, about 750 words. PHYLLIS BARBER MEMOIR Phyllis N. Barber was born in Nevada and grew up in Boulder City and Las Vegas. She received an M.F.A. in creative writing from Vermont College and has taught in its writing program. Her autobiography, How I Got Cultured, won the 1991 Association of Writers and Writing Programs Prize for Creative Nonfiction and the 1993 Award for Best Autobiography from the Association of Mormon Letters.

PATRICIA B. CARDONA SPECIALTY BOOK, JUDGE Patricia B. Cardona has a diverse writing background from translating documents from French to English for Lancome, to creating preflight checklists for the Princeton Airways Corporation, to editing process manuals for IBM, and creating ads, press releases and promotional materials for ACN Franchise, Inc. In addition, she has worked with local TV and radio personalities to provide film coverage for charity events. She earned a B.A. in English and French from Rutgers University, and her M.A. in Professional Writing from Kennesaw State University, where she currently teaches English composition. 4 Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009


JENNIFER DAIL CHILDREN’S MID-READER Dr. Dail joined the KSU English Education faculty in fall 2006, following four years as a middle and high school English teacher and three years as a college professor. She enjoys working with teachers and students in an effort to connect her scholarly work and teaching to current classroom practices. Her recent publications are in the area of young adult literature and focus on engaging students with texts and teachers’ uses in classroom instruction. Her current research focuses on using digital mediums to promote reflectivity in pre-service teachers.

our judges

KAREN THOMPSON CHILDREN’S PICTURE BOOK Karen Thompson is an educational specialist and is on staff of Georgia Writers Association. Karen received a B.A. in literature from the University of North Carolina - Asheville, and taught elementary school for five years, for which she received the 11 Alive News Class Act Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2004. Karen received her Masters in Education from Kennesaw State University.

KATHERINE MASON YOUNG ADULT Dr. Mason joined the KSU English Education faculty in fall 2006 following several years of teaching middle school English and reading in Kansas City, Kansas. She seeks out opportunities to connect her teaching, scholarly work, and service and has published her research on second language acquisition, cooperative learning, and the teaching of writing. Currently, her primary research interest is students’ articulations and perceptions of their unique composing processes.

GEORGE HOOKS HISTORY Senator George Hooks, 14th District for the State of Georgia is a democrat, and ranking member of the budget-writing Senate Appropriations Committee. Prior to the Republican take over of the Senate in 2003, he was Chairman of the Committee. He also served on the Senate Rules Committee and chaired the panel until his appointment to the Appropriations post in September 1993. Hooks is a member of the Natural Resources; Defense, Science, and Technology; and the Reapportionment committees. He serves as an ex-officio member of the Economic Development, Tourism, and Cultural Affairs committee. Senator Hooks is passionate about history and enthusiastically served as the Judge for the history genre for this year’s GAYA.

SCOTT CAIRNS BIOGRAPHY Scott Cairns is an American poet, memoirist and essayist. He is currently professor of English and director of Creative Writing at the University of Missouri. Cairns is the author of six collections of poetry, one collection of translations of Christian mystics, one spiritual memoir, and co-edited The Sacred Place with Scott Olsen, an anthology of poetry, fiction and nonfiction. He wrote the libretto for “The Martyrdom of Saint Polycarp,” an oratorio composed by JAC Redford. His poems have appeared in journals including The Atlantic Monthly, The Paris Review, The New Republic, Image, and Poetry. Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009 5


poetry

DIANN BLAKELY Cities of Flesh and the Dead Diann Blakely’s collection of poetry previously won the Poetry Society of America’s Alice Fay Di Castagnola Award while still a work in progress. Ms. Blakely has also won two Pushcart Awards and appeared in Best American Poetry 2003. Blakely is the author of Hurricane Walk (1992) and Farewell, My Lovelies (2000). Ms. Blakely is a poetry editor for Antioch Review and co-editor of Each Fugitive Moment. She is a book and arts reviewer for the Nashville Scene/Village Voice Media Group, and lives near Savannah with her husband. R. CARY BYNUM Sea Vigil: Poems A native Atlantan, Bynum is the author of several volumes of plays and poetry including Cabbagetown: 3 Women (1984), Six Short Plays (1993), and The Chinaberry Tree and other Poems (2002). Bynum has won several playwriting awards, including a John Golden Award and two regional Emmy nominations for his eighteen produced plays. He has a B.F.A. from the University of Georgia and an M.A. from City University of New York. He is currently working on a short-story collection, Reunion in Thera, and a new poetry collection, Night Streetcars CHAD DAVIDSON The Last Predicta Chad Davidson is the author of Consolation Miracle (2003), from Southern Illinois University Press. He has work forthcoming or recently appearing in Double Take, Ploughshares, Prairie Schooner, and Virginia Quarterly Review. He currently teaches literature and creative writing at the University of West Georgia, near Atlanta.

LINDA LEE HARPER Kiss, Kiss Linda Lee Harper received her M.F.A. in poetry from the University of Pittsburgh, where she taught in the English department. Harper later taught in the English department of the University of South Carolina Aiken. She has received an Academy of American Poets first prize, four Pushcart nominations, The Hoepfner Award from The Southern Humanities Review, and has had her work published in numerous journals and anthologies. Currently, she is working on a third poetry collection and a novel at her home on Lake Murray.

COLLIN KELLEY After the Poison

Collin Kelley has received multiple Pushcart nominations as well as the 2007 Georgia Author of the Year/Taran Memorial Award for his work as co-editor of the Java Monkey Speaks Anthology series from Poetry Atlanta Press. His poetry, essays and interviews have appeared in magazines, journals and anthologies around the world. His play The Dark Horse received the 1994 Deep South Festival of Writers Award for Best Play and the Georgia Theatre Conference Award in 1997. His debut novel, Conquering Venus, is forthcoming from Vanilla Heart Publishing in Summer 2009. 6 Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009


poetry

SANDRA MEEK Biogeography Sandra Meek has received two Georgia Author of the Year Awards in poetry and four Pushcart nominations. She received her B.A. and M.F.A. degrees from Colorado State University, and her Ph.D. from the University of Denver. For two years she served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Botswana, and in 2003, she received the Peace Corps Writers Award in poetry for her first book Nomadic Foundations (2002). Meek has been published in many literary journals, and is currently an associate professor at Berry College in Mt. Berry, Ga. ED PAVLIC Winners Have Yet to be Announced Ed Pavlic is the author of several books, including Paraph of Bone & Other Kinds of Blue (2001), which won The American Poetry Review / Honickman First Book Award. He has taught at the University of Wisconsin Madison, Indiana University, St. John’s College (York, UK), and Union College. He now directs the M.F.A. / Ph.D. program in creative writing, teaches at the University of Georgia and lives in Athens, Georgia.

MEKAEL L. SHANE The Road to Damascus Poems by Mekael Mr. Shane is enjoying his second Georgia Author of the Year nomination. The Genesis was nominated last year for a GAYA in poetry. Mr. Shane began writing poetry ten years ago, and this collection is the product of that journey. You can sense in some of the poems, what was once Mekael’s youthful rebellion as compared to some of the poems that he created later during the course of his maturation. Each component is an expression of both Mekael’s Poetic ability and his journey into his malehood.

EMILY BLAKE VAIL This Fragile Earth Ms. Vail’s occupations over time have included editing, teaching, church choir director, soloist, boutique manager, volunteer coordinator, mother, and college administrator wife. With degrees from Birmingham-Southern College (A.B.), Georgia State University, and UGA, she has assumed many roles and participated in varying activities - some leading to the writing of both serious and humorous poems.

NAGUEYALTI WARREN Margaret Ms. Warren received her undergraduate degree from Fisk University, her M.A. degrees from Boston University and Simmons College, and her Ph.D. from the University of Mississippi. Warren received her M.F.A. from Goddard College in 2005. Her poems have appeared in Essence, Mamazine, Kuka Soup, African American Review, The Ringing Ear, and Gathering Ground. She has also edited a poetry anthology, TembaTupu (Walking Naked): The Africana Woman’s Poetic Self-Portrait, and co-edited Southern Mothers: Fact and Fictions in Southern Women’s Writing.

Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009 7


poetry

ANNE WEBSTER A History of Nursing Webster has worked in Atlanta hospitals for nearly thirty years, and during those years she continued to write and publish poems. She has had her work published in numerous journals and anthologies, such as The Poetry of Nursing: Poems and Commentaries by Leading Nurse Poets, Stories of Illness and Healing: Women Write Their Bodies, Rattle: Poetry for the 21st Century: A Tribute to Nurses, Intensive Care: More Poetry and Prose by Nurses, and Ethnic American Woman: Problems, Protests, Lifestyles. She lives in Atlanta with her husband.

JOHN WHITE, JR. Seeing in the Unseen John White, Jr. served in the United States Army from 1983 to 1988. He is a former kindergarten teacher, and a graduate of Speak the Word School of Ministry in Copperas Cove, TX. He has studied Biblical Education at Atlantic Southern Bible College in Lilburn, GA, and is currently a minister and motivational speaker. White was nominated for the Georgia Author of the Year Award in 2001.

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coming to gwa

SECOND SATURDAY WRITERS WORKSHOPS A Monthly Event Sponsored by Georgia Writers Association JULY 11, 2009: Member Read! Led by Jenny Sadre-Orafai. Join us for our first members’ critique group, following the workshop. AUGUST 8, 2009: Judging a Book by its Cover Panel Discussion on Book Cover Design SEPTEMBER 12, 2009: Stop the Press! Creating Press Kits and Releases with Beth Giddens OCTOBER 10, 2009: Using E-Mail Marketing to Sell Your Next Book with Pam Adams NOVEMBER 7, 2009: The Georgia Writers Writing Conference DECEMBER 12, 2009: The Heart and Soul of Writing anel Discussion with Inspirational Writers

JOIN US FOR THE GEORGIA WRITERS WRITING CONFERENCE SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 7, 2009

Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009 9


contents

jUNE 13, 2009

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features RHUBARB JONES P.2 Learn more about this Atlanta radio legend and his connection to Georgia Writers Association and Kennesaw State University FURMAN BISHER P.12 He met “Shoeless Joe Jackson” and was granted his only interview. He was at the first NASCAR event. He has covered the Masters, the Derby, the Superbowls, the World Series, and the list goes on. Learn more about tonight’s Lifetime Achievement Award Winner.

10 Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009

the nominees POETRY P.6 FIRST NOVEL P.14 FICTION P.18 CHILDREN’S PICTURE BOOK P.22 CHILDREN’S MID-READER P.24 YOUNG ADULT P.25 CREATIVE NONFICTION BIO P.26 CREATIVE NONFICTION ESSAY P.29 CREATIVE NONFICTION HISTORY P.28 CREATVIE NONFICTION MEMOIR P.30 CREATIVE NONFICTION SP. BOOK P.32

about gwa EVENTS P.9 Find out what is ahead in the next few months for the Georgia Writers Assoc. SOMETHING TO WRITE HOME ABOUT P.27 Reprint from Points North Magazine about Georgia Writers Association WHY JOIN GWA? P.17 Membership has its benfits. Supporting GWA by becoming a member ensures that the Georgia Author of the Year continues year after year.


Georgia Writers Association (GWA) is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) organization that works across the state to encourage and strengthen the proficiencies of writers in both the creative and the business aspects of the writing life. We do this through an array of speakers and programs at regular meetings. The GWA sponsors workshops, conferences, seminars, contests and other events. We encourage the formation of satellite groups, critique groups, and other writer resource groups. We encourage the funding of guest authors to various Georgia counties. Our online publications are an attempt to educate and inform the diverse literary community of Georgia. Accomplished Georgia writers are recognized through the Georgia Author of the Year Awards. Georgia Writers Association is supported in part by the Georgia Council for the Arts (GCA) through the appropriations of the Georgia General Assembly. The GCA also receives support from its partner agency, the National Endowment for the Arts. In addition, the Georgia Writers Association is in part supported by and located at the College of Humanities on the campus of Kennesaw State University. Some events are in cooperation with Kennesaw Mountain Writing Project and the Masters of Arts in Professional Writing at Kennesaw State University in Kennesaw, Georgia.

The Georgia Writers Association recognizes Georgia’s authors of excellence by presenting the Georgia Author of the Year Awards. The GAYA has the distinction of being the oldest literary awards in the Southeastern United States while reflecting the current publishing world. The GAYA honors both independently published authors as well as traditionally published authors.The GAYA have grown in prestige and participation since its inception in 1964 by the Dixie Council of Authors and Journalists. The GAYA changed hands in 1990 to Georgia Writers Association and, in 2006, GWA began a strong affiliation with Kennesaw State University’s Department of Humanities. In 2006, over 100 books were nominated for Georgia Author of the Year. The GAYA covers the traditional categories of poetry and fiction while accommodating the growing creative nonfiction genre.

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lifetime achievement

He had the only interview with Shoeless Joe Jackson and attended the first NASCAR race and every Masters since 1950. At 90, he still writes a column for the AJC.

furman bisher By Laurel Reese For years, Furman Bisher, legendary sports editor, columnist, and author, signed off his columns with the Hebrew word “selah,” most closely translated as “Let those with eyes see and with ears hear.” Bisher’s work has certainly been seen, heard, and celebrated for decades. At ninety years old, Bisher is still a sports columnist for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and his writing is as it has been for the past seven decades— passionate, witty, eloquent, and honest. Every column and book is imbued with Bisher’s wry sense of humor and his love and respect for age-old sporting traditions. This year, we honor Furman Bisher with the GAYA Lifetime Achievement Award.

a legend is born Bisher was born in Denton, North Carolina, on November 4, 1918. He graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1938 and became the editor of North Carolina’s Lumberton Voice at the tender age of twenty. Bisher went on to work at the Charlotte News, where he became sports editor in 1948. One of the highlights of Bisher’s career began the next year when, work-

12 Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009

ing for Sports Magazine, he held the only interview granted by Shoeless Joe Jackson since 1919 concerning Jackson’s involvement in the 1919 World Series “Black

Awards and Accolades •Named one of the nation’s top five columnists by Time magazine (1961) •Awarded the Red Smith Award for contributions to journalism (1988) •His work anthologized in Best Sports Stories of the Year twenty-three times •Awarded eighteen first place Associated Press Awards •Inducted into five Halls of Fame, including the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Hall of Fame (1989) •PGA Lifetime Achievement in Journalism Award (1996)


Sox” scandal. Bisher left the Charlotte News to become sports editor for the Atlanta Constitution in 1950. He was president of the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association from 1974 to 1976 and president of the Football Writers Association of America from 1959 to 1960. Bisher has written several books, including Strange But True Baseball Stories (1966), The Masters: Augusta Revisited, an Intimate View (1976), The Furman Bisher Collection (1989), Thankful (2001), and Face to Face (2005). Bisher was also the co-writer of the first biography of Hank Aaron, entitled Aaron, RF (1968).

Bylines From the Sidelines Bisher has witnessed and covered sports history in the making time and again since the 1950s, and his knowledge of and passion for sports is evident in every book and column. Bisher watched the first NASCAR race as an editor in Charlotte. He has covered every Kentucky Derby since 1950 and every Super Bowl but the first. Bisher has also attended every Masters Tournament since 1950, and during the 2006 Masters, The Golf Channel declared him the “dean” of Masters journalists. Of the Masters, Bisher said in 2008, “I don’t plan to miss one until it’s played over my head.” He is also credited with helping to bring the Braves baseball team, Atlanta’s first professional sports team, from Milwaukee to Atlanta, an experience he recounts in his second book, Miracle in Atlanta (1966). Bisher’s writing offers countless precious highlights from the past sixty years of sports. His sense of humor shines forth, especially when he points out some of his favorite quotes and moments. For instance, his favorite golf quote is by amateur Billy Joe Patton after losing the 1954 Masters by one stroke: “I could have handled the fame, I could have handled the money. But I doubt if I could have handled the women.” While Bisher’s work in past decades has repeatedly and wonderfully captured the contemporary sports world, his more recent work has a particular importance because of its rich historical content. Bob Rathbun, sportscaster for the Atlanta Hawks, says of

Bisher’s writing, “Everything today is ‘right now,’ and it’s refreshing to me to read about what has gone on before. That is something that needs to be cherished and recognized.”

Choreographer of Words Furman Bisher—husband, father of three sons, sports editor, columnist, author, and legend— could not be more deserving of an award that honors lifetime achievement. His fellow writer and friend Lewis Grizzard perfectly described Bisher’s work when he wrote, “The words from other writers marched drone-like. Furman’s dance.” Even after years of achievement and praise, Bisher remains humble and motivated. He recently said, “However over-glorified I am, what I’m looking for is how good the next column is going to be. And I’m searching somewhere down the road Lewis Grizzard to write that perfect column… At least, that’s my goal.” In 2006, Bisher wrote an article in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution entitled, “My Annual Giving of Thanks.” While Bisher may be thankful for the sound of trickling waterfalls, knowing the words to church songs, growing up in the radio age, corned beef and cabbage “any time, any day,” and parents who enjoy being parents, we are thankful for Furman Bisher. We are thankful for his decades of dedication, his honest and witty writing, his passion and respect for the world of sports, and his lifetime of incredible achievement.

“The words from other writers marched drone-like. Furman’s dance.”-

About the writer: Laurel Reese is a senior English and Art History major at Furman University. She was born in Atlanta, Georgia, and hopes to pursue a career as an editor.

Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009 13


first novel

RAYMOND L. ATKINS The Front Porch Prophet Mr. Atkins lives in Rome, Georgia, with his wife. They live in a 110-yearold house that they have restored themselves, and they have four grown children who drop by from time to time. His stories have been published in Christmas Stories from Georgia, The Lavender Mountain Anthology, The Blood and Fire Review, and The Old Red Kimono. His columns appear regularly in the Rome News/Tribune and Memphis Downtowner Magazine.

LISA CANDELARIA BARTLETT Train Tales Lisa Bartlett is an award-winning writer originally born in California. In addition to fiction, Ms. Bartlett has also written poetry. She is a retired singer and former management associate of a large well-known retailer; currently, she is a full-time law enforcement dispatcher. She lives in Pinehurst, Georgia, with her husband, Forrest, her son, Adam, and her cat, Rotten.

KAREN M. BENCE Midnight Revelations Karen M. Bence is nominated for her first novel, Midnight Revelations. She graduated with a B.A. in psychology from Dickinson College and a M.A. in social work from the University of Pennsylvania. A former social worker, psychotherapist and educator, Ms. Bence is also an avid equestrian and dog breeder. Like the protagonist of Midnight Revelations, she also engaged in a determined search for her biological mother. Ms. Bence currently resides with her husband and son on a horse farm outside of Atlanta, GA.

DAVID CADY The Handler David Cady is nominated for his first novel, The Handler. He grew up in Northwest Georgia not far from the Tennessee River and Chattanooga. In 2000, at the age of 54, he retired and within a year completed the first draft of a novel that was never published, and still waits on his revisions. Mr. Cady immediately started work on his next novel, which was his first to be published. David and Cindy, his wife of 41 years, have two adult children and three grandchildren. They now live on a mountain in Rocky Face, Georgia. JODI CERALDI Redesigning the Mob

Jodi Ceraldi is nominated for her first novel, Redesigning the Mob. During the 1970s, she lived in Hollywood, Florida. She was a trust officer of a National Bank for thirteen years before taking the position of service consultant with BellSouth. She attended Nova University and the University of Florida. She held offices within the organization of Women Bankers of America and Daughters of the American Revolution, and was also a member of the BellSouth Speakers Bureau. She is now active in her community senior center, and her favorite hobby is line dancing. 14 Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009


BENJY GRIFFITH Whiskey Before Breakfast Benjamin Griffith is nominated for his first novel, Whiskey Before Breakfast. After completing his Mercer A.B. and his Florida State M.A., he taught English at Tift College and added to his list of published poems. Later, he became president of a land sales and development company. More recently, he began rising at dawn to write a novel set in the locale he knows best, Middle Georgia.

first novel

JAN DURHAM Fastened to the Marsh Jan Durham is nominated for her first novel, Fastened to the Marsh. She is also the author of one other book, After the Example of Christ, a model for servant ministry for older adults. She graduated from Georgia Southern University with a B.S. in secondary education and became a clergy member of the United Methodist Church after attending the Candler School of Theology. She currently lives on Skidaway Island on the Georgia coast.

ANNE B. JONES Black Water Rising Anne B. Jones is nominated for her first novel, Blackwater Rising. She is also the author of Gold Thunder (2004), All Around the Track (2007), and Brave at Heart (2007). Her background includes participation in a metro-area police academy, writing several newspaper series related to law enforcement, volunteering as a rape-crisis counselor and a victimwitness assistant, and publishing of over 500 articles in newspapers and magazines. Ms. Jones teaches writing and organizes book signings and writing conferences in the Atlanta area, where she is a member of Sisters in Crime and the Georgia Writers Association.

TOM PILGRIM The Taste of Paradise Tom Pilgrim is nominated for his first novel, The Taste of Paradise. He was born in LaGrange, Georgia, and grew up in several small towns, but mainly in Savannah, Georgia, where he lived ten years. He and his wife, Shirley, now live in Marietta, Georgia. Pilgrim has written a column for The Jackson Herald and contributed to the journal Emphasis. He is also the author of six inspirational books: The Master Has Come, The Roads Jesus Traveled, Behold The Man, The Man From Galilee, They Came Together In Bethlehem, and The Light Of Bethlehem Shines On.

LORRAINE TATE Going Home Lorraine Tate is nominated for her first novel, Going Home, which is the first book in a planned trilogy. Raised all over the South, she graduated summa cum laude from Kennesaw State University with a B.A. in English. A resident of Woodstock, GA, she also spends part of her time at her Canton, NC, cabin, “Point of View.� She is hard at work on the second novel in her trilogy, After the Crucible. Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009 15


first novel

HUBERT WHITLOW Blue Awesome Ascending Hubert Whitlow, Jr., is nominated for his first novel, Blue Awesome Ascending. Whitlow is also the author of several short stories, including “Lottery Time,” which won the Louisville Review prize for fiction, and “Stoner’s Room,” which was reprinted in a collection called Walking on Water and Other Stories (1996). His novel won second place in the Associated Writing Programs Prize in the Novel. He studied creative writing at the University of Alabama, and received a Master of Library Studies degree from Emory University and was the Head Librarian of Georgia Highlands College for twenty years. He lives in Athens, Georgia.

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STEPHEN WING Free Ralph! Stephen Wing is nominated for his first novel Free Ralph! An Evolutionary Fable. He gave up a 12-year career as a hitchhiker in 1990 when he met his wife and settled in Atlanta. He now works as a wholesale book distributor. Graduating from Beloit College with a fiction writing degree, he is the author of Free Ralph!, Four-Wheeler & Two-Legged: Poems, Crossing the Expressway: Poems from the Open Road, In the Presence of the Disappeared, and Proof of the Miraculous: Campfire Poetry from the Rainbow Gatherings.


Why Join the Georgia Writers Association? #10 Member Discounts #9

Professional Connections

#8

Writing Workshops

#7

Online Resources

#6

Exclusive Opportunities

#5

Monthly Writing Contests

#4

Publishing Contacts

#3

Literary and Social Events

#2

Association with KSU and GCA

#1 Become a Better Writer Without Membership Support -The GAYA would not be possible. Join GWA Today!

Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009 17


fiction

EMILY GIFFIN Baby Proof Emily Giffin is nominated for her novel Baby Proof. She is also the author of the New York Times bestseller, Something Borrowed and Something Blue (2005). Ms. Giffin has been featured in Elle Magazine, The New York Times, and Glamour. Her books have been widely reviewed in newspapers and magazines coast-to-coast. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia with her husband, two young sons, and newborn daughter.

CYNTHIA L. SIMMONS Struggles and Triumphs Cynthia L. Simmons is nominated for her book Struggles and Triumphs. She grew up in Chattanooga, Tennessee and graduated from Erlanger School of Nursing. In 2004 Cynthia joined the Christian Authors Guild (CAG) in Woodstock, Georgia. Three of her stories appeared in a compilation, The Desk in the Attic (2004). A year later she was published in another CAG anthology, No Small Miracles. Presently she serves as 2008 president of the CAG. She currently resides in the Atlanta area with her husband, Ray, and has five children. JOANN WASEM DUNN Fortune’s Road & Autumn’s Road Joann Dunn is nominated for her novels Fortune’s Road and Autumn’s Road. These novels are the third and fourth installments in a projected five part series. A transplanted northerner, she lives and writes in Marietta, GA, and has lived in the Atlanta area for twenty-three years. Ms. Dunn is a member of the American Bar Association, Georgia Writer’s Association, The Carrollton Creative Writers’ Club, Sisters in Crime, Mystery Writers of America, The Georgia Poetry Society, The Lit Chix, The Lake House Critique Group, SIBA and PMA, among other organizations. LINDA KENNEY MILLER Beacon on the Hill Linda Kenney Miller is nominated for her novel Beacon on the Hill. She is a graduate of Fisk University with a B.A. in English. She taught English and Reading in the District of Columbia Public School System, while taking graduate courses at Howard University, where she published Realism in Black Poetry as part of a curriculum guide for public school teachers. Linda is currently taking leave from her medical management career to establish a publishing company, Harper House Publishers. Beacon on the Hill has just been awarded the 2008 Best Books Award in Fiction-Historical from USA Book News. KAREN WHITE The Memory of Water & The House on Tradd Street.

Karen White is nominated for her novels The Memory of Water and The House on Tradd Street. Karen pursued a degree in business and graduated cum laude with a BS in Management from Tulane University. Ten years later she wrote her first book, In the Shadow of the Moon (2000), which was nominated for Romance Writers of America’s RITA award in 2001. Her books have since been nominated for, or won, numerous national contests including another RITA, and the Georgia Author of the Year Award. Ms. White won the National Readers’ Choice Award in 2008 for Learning to Breathe (2007). 18 Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009


fiction

SANDRA PORTER Reflections in my Tea Sandra Porter is nominated for her novel Reflections in my Tea. She is also the author of Whistling in the Wind (2005). Born in Phoenix, AZ, she graduated with a business degree after attending El Camino College and Cal State Dominquez Hills University. She enjoys wearing many hats and, before devoting her time to writing, ran her own floral design business. She has been writing since she was a teenager.

JACK RIGGS The Fireman’s Wife Jack Riggs is nominated for his novel Fireman’s Wife. His first novel, When the Finch Rises (2003), won the Georgia Author of the Year Award, and was chosen by Booklist as one of the Top 10 First Novels of 2003. Riggs is the Writer-in-Residence at the Writers Institute at Georgia Perimeter College in Atlanta.

HANK MCQUADE The Bent Nail Hank McQuade is nominated for his novel, The Bent Nail. The author is the recipient of several prestigious writing awards. Among them, the Honor Certificate from the Freedom’s Foundation at Valley Forge; for a series of historical vignettes that “contributed to a better understanding of the American way of life.” Another of his awards of great merit, the Gold Quill, was conferred on the author by the International Association of Business Communicators for “excellence in the field of corporate communications.” The author makes his home in suburban Atlanta.

JOHNNY NEIL SMITH Unconquered Johnny Neil Smith is nominated for his novel Unconquered. He has always been interested in history and, as an educator in Mississippi and Georgia, has taught Mississippi, Georgia, American, and World History. He is now retired as headmaster of Piedmont Academy in Monticello, Georgia. Over the years, he has spent numerous hours reading about the War Between the States and visiting battlefields where his great-grandfathers fought.

DAC CROSSLEY Return of the Texas Ranger Dac Crossley is nominated for his novel Return of the Texas Ranger. Mr. Crossley writes historical fiction set in South Texas. He is also the author of the novel Guns Across the Rio: A Texas Ranger in Old Mexico (2007), and co-author of the textbook, Fundamentals of Soil Ecology (1996). He has a Ph.D. in entomology and retired from the University of Georgia’s Institute of Ecology in 1998.

Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009 19


fiction

SHANA JOHNSON BURTON First Comes Love Shana Johnson Burton, a native of Macon, GA, began her writing career at the age of nine. In addition to writing, she teaches high school English and Journalism at her alma mater and continues to reside in Macon with her husband and two children. Shana’s first novel was Suddenly Single.

C.M. FLEMMING Finder’s Magic C.M. Flemmingis nominated for Finder’s Magic. Ms. Flemming received her degree in pre-law from Western New Mexico University and has been writing for many years. She is a former fingerprint technician and Analyst in the Uniform Crime Reporting Division with Georgia Bureau of Investigation. She retired in 2005. Ms. Mueller is currently a full-time author, illustrator, and ventriloquist.

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Sunday’s with Papa T A River Adventure By Tommy Batchelor Art by Ted Clements Info E-mail: Tommy@tommybatchelor.com Web Site: www.tommybatchelor.com All books ordered off my site 1$ is donated to The Georgia River Network!

16th Harriette Austin Writers Conference, July 17-18 UGA Continuing Education Center, Athens, Georgia Keynote: Robert Vaughn Agents, authors, editors, workshops, ms. critiques.

Details: www.harrietteaustin.org

Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009 21


children’s picture book

TOMMY BATCHELOR Sundays with Papa T: A River Adventure Tommy Batchelor wrote the book as a way to share his stories and the things he enjoyed with his grandchildren. He has a love for the outdoors and learned to fish and hunt around his home in Middle Georgia. His book is the first in a planned series and deals with learning about nature as well as the bond between a grandparent and grandchild

ANSLEY CAROLE BURNETTE Frisco Finds a Forever Family Ansley Burnette is 8 years old and lives in Blairsville, Georgia. She volunteers at Castaway Critters Pet Rescue, a no-kill animal shelter in her hometown, where she cares for and socializes dogs and cats, cleans pens, helps with adoptions, and works with fundraising. Proceeds from Frisco Finds a Forever Family support Castaway Critters as well as other animal rescue groups nationwide. She has five rescued dogs of her own, and one guinea pig. When she grows up, she wants to be an animal trainer.

GAIL LANGER KARWOSKI River Beds: Sleeping in the World’s Rivers Gail Langer Karwoski is an award-winning children’s book writer. She is also the author of Water Beds: Sleeping in the Ocean (2005), which won Mom’s Choice Best Children’s Picture Book Author for 2005, Tsunami: The True Story of an April Fool’s Day Disaster(2006), Quake! Disaster in San Francisco, 1906(2006), and Julie the Rockhound (2007).She lives near the University of Georgia with her husband, two daughters, and three cats.

PATSY SMITH ROBERTS Nigel: The Adventures of a Baby Elephant Patsy Smith Roberts’ trip to Africa in the early 1990s ignited a passion for the continent as well as for wildlife photography. SavutiMuti Publishing released her first book, Rory, The Adventures of a Lion Cub (2001), a collaboration with South African travel writer Gillian Cullinan. Patsy has both written and illustrated two additional books, Kabelo, The Adventures of a Baby Giraffe (2004) and Willis the Warthog (2005). Patsy Smith Roberts grew-up in Southeastern Georgia and now lives on St. Simons Island, Georgia.

DIANE Z. SHORE This is the Feast Diane Z. Shore is nominated for her picture book This is the Feast, and her middle reader book How to Drive Your Sister Crazy. She is also the author of Bus-A-Saurus Bop (2003), which won the 2004 Children’s Choice Award, Rosa Loves to Read(2004),Look Both Ways (2005), and This Is The Dream (2005). Ms. Shore is a read-aloud advocate and former teacher who now travels across the United States with her “A-Rockin’ and A-Readin’” school presentations. 22 Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009


AERLE TAREE Molly’s Mental Health: Love Me Too Aerle Taree Jones believes that her picture book speaks to the child in each of us. Ms. Jones has campaigned for wellness as the goal of mental health. Proceeds for her book go to the National Alliance for Mental Illness (NAMI). Aerle spent her early twenties traveling Europe and performing. She bought a cottage in East Point when she was only 18 years old to write and create. That is where this book was born.

LESLIE S. JONES The Adventures of Callaway Leslie Jones is dedicated mother, wife, and small business owner. She has written articles for the professional magazine Advance for SpeechLanguage Pathologists and Fayette Woman Magazine where communication and personal devotion are encouraged. She has developed professional products and programs that focus on language development through literacy and developed a program titled “Students Projecting Excellence through Efficient Communication Habits—SPEECH” for high school students in her community.

children’s picture book

GRADY THRASHER Tim & Sally’s Beach Adventure Grady Thrasher is also the author of Tim and Sally’s Vegetable Garden (2007), which won the Georgia Author of the Year Award for Picture Books in 2008. Prior to being a picture book author, Thrasher was a securities attorney in Atlanta. He is a graduate of both Georgia Tech and Emory Law School. A Georgia native, he now resides in Athens and Watkinsville, Ga., with his wife, artist Kathy Prescott.

The Georgia Writers Association is pleased to sponsor the regranting of funds to Georgia’s diverse communities to provide literary events by Georgia’s Authors. In cooperation with The Center for Literature and with funding by the Georgia Council for the Arts, GWA attempts to provide quality literary events throughout Georgia.

Application and Guidelines available at www.georgiawriters.org

Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009 23


children’s mid-reader

EVELYN COLEMAN Freedom Train is nominated for her book, Freedom Train. She is also the author of To Be a Drum (2000), White Socks Only (1999), The Riches of Oseola McCarty (1998), a Smithsonian Notable Book and a Carter G. Woodson Honor Book, Born in Sin (2001), and Shadows on Society Hill: An Addy Mystery (2007) from the American Girl Mysteries® collection. Ms. Coleman lives in Atlanta, Georgia, where she received the Atlanta mayor’s fellowship for achievement in children’s literature.

LIZ FLEMING The Bunny Breeder Liz Fleming is nominated for her middle reader, The Bunny Breeder. Her first published work was at the age of 15 when she wrote an instructional byline for a craft magazine. Her published pieces include contributions to various Chicken Soup publications and a technical manual for a major insurance company. Ms. Fleming lives in Duluth, GA with her husband and menagerie of animals, which include 12 pedigreed show rabbits.

PAMELA BAUER MUELLER Aloha Crossing Pamela Bauer Mueller is nominated for her middle reader, Aloha Crossing. She is also the author of several books including: Hello, Goodbye, I Love You: The Story of Aloha, A Guide Dog for the Blind (2003); Neptune’s Honor (2005); and An Angry Drum Echoed: Mary Musgrove, Queen of the Creeks (2007). Ms. Mueller has won several awards including two previous Georgia Author of the Year Awards. Ms. Mueller resides on Jekyll Island, Georgia with her husband, Michael, and two cats.

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DIANE Z. SHORE How to Drive Your Sister Crazy Diane Z. Shore is nominated for her picture book This is the Feast, and her middle reader book How to Drive Your Sister Crazy. She is also the author of Bus-A-Saurus Bop (2003), which won the 2004 Children’s Choice Award, Rosa Loves to Read(2004),Look Both Ways (2005), and This Is The Dream (2005). Ms. Shore is a read-aloud advocate and former teacher who now travels across the United States with her “A-Rockin’ and A-Readin’” school presentations.


TAD HUTTON Time Pool: The Amazing Adventures of Eddie Dowd Tad Hutton is nominated for his young adult novel Time Pool: The Amazing Adventures of Eddie Dowd. His book is the first in a proposed trilogy. He is also the author of Gullah Island (1992), Guale(1993), and Rio Savannah (2007). He graduated from Notre Dame with undergraduate and graduate degrees and has done graduate work at the University of Georgia. Hutton has taught at four colleges and universities and is a former Peace Corps member.

young adult

TED M. DUNAGAN A Yellow Watermelon Ted M. Dunagan was born in rural southwestern Alabama. He attended Georgia State University, and served in the U.S. Army as a member of the 101st Airborne Division and Special Forces Training Group. He is retired from a career in the cosmetics and fragrance industry and lives in Monticello, Georgia, where he writes features and a weekly column for The Monticello News. His second young adult fiction novel, The Secret Of The Satilfa, is forthcoming from NewSouth Books.

SHELIA P. MOSES Joseph Shelia P. Moses is nominated for her young adult novel Joseph. She is also the co-author of Dick Gregory’s memoir, Callus on My Soul(2003), as well as the author of three books for young adults: I, Dred Scott: A Fictional Slave Narrative Based on the Life and Legal Precedent of Dred Scott (2005); The Return of Buddy Bush (2005); and The Legend of Buddy Bush(2008). She is also a poet, playwright, and producer. Ms. Moses currently lives in Atlanta, Georgia

NATASHA USHER The Hunts Natasha Usher is nominated for her young adult novel The Hunts, which is her second book for children. Ms. Usher is also the author of Summer’s Love (2007) and The Fall of My Brother, The Tycoon Genius (2007). She is married with two children, two dogs and one cat. In addition to being an author she is also a middle grade teacher. She enjoys reading, writing, photography, travel, and watching movies.

Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009 25


creative nonfiction biography

MARVIN S. ARRINGTON, SR. Making my Mark: The Story of a Man Who Wouldn’t Stay in His Place Marvin Arrington is a distinguished judge on the Fulton County Superior Court. Judge Arrington attended Clark College, Howard University School of Law, and Emory University Law School, where he was awarded his J.D. in 1967. From there, he went on to become a founding partner of Arrington & Hollowell. In his seventh decade, Arrington continues to mentor, educate, and inspire future generations. Judge Arrington credits his life to God’s grace and mercy, and to his loving parents and supportive family and friends.

FREDERICK L. DOWNING Elie Wiesel: A Religious Biography Frederick Downing is head of the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies at Valdosta State University in Valdosta, GA. He is a member of the American Academy of Religion, the Society of Biblical Literature, the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion, and the American Schools of Oriental Research. Professor Downing is also the author of To See the Promised Land: The Faith Pilgrimage of Martin Luther King, Jr. He has traveled widely in the Middle East, and worked on the supervisory staffs of several archaeological excavations including the expeditions to Ai, Khirbet Raddana, and most recently at Tell Beth Shemesh in Israel.

CATHERINE OGLESBY Corra Harris and the Divided Mind of the New South Catherine Oglesby is professor of history at Valdosta State University where she teaches U.S. history, including undergraduate and graduate courses in women’s history and the New South. She received her Ph.D. from Michigan State University in 1996. In 2004, she received the E. Merton Coulter award from the Georgia Historical Society for an article on Corra Harris. Professor Oglesby serves on the Georgia Historical Records Advisory Board and the Executive Board of the Georgia Association of Historians. Corra Harris and the Divided Mind of the New South, published in 2008 by the University Press of Florida, is her first book.

creative nonfiction essay KATHERINE McCLYMOND Beyond Sacred Violence: A Comparative Study of Sacrifice Kathryn McClymond is nominated for her essay book, Beyond Sacred Violence: A Comparative Study of Sacrifice. She received her B.A. from Harvard University and her Ph.D. from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Dr. McClymond is a comparative historian of religions. She has served as co-chair of the Comparative Studies in Hinduisms and Judaisms Group for the American Academy of Religion and currently sits on the steering committee for the Comparative Study of Religion Section. She received the 2002 Distinguished Honors Professor Award and the 2006 Outstanding Teaching Award in the College of Arts and Sciences at Georgia State University.

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Points North, June 2007 article reprinted by permission of author (continued on p 29) Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009 27


creative nonfiction history

EDWIN CHASE Patches of the Quilt Edwin Chase received his Doctor of Ministry degree at Columbia University and Master’s of Divinity degree at Yale University. He is a pastoral counselor who serves as director of the Family Institute and Special Gifts at the Methodist Home for Children and Youth in Macon, Georgia. Prior to coming to the Home, he served as director of the Clergy Resource Center in Columbus, Georgia. When Edwin is not speaking, writing or raising money for the children’s home, he likes to be in the mountains of North Carolina, Georgia or Colorado fly fishing or taking pictures.

BILL CHASE Patches of the Quilt Bill Chase was raised at the Methodist Children’s Home in Macon, GA, during the Rock and Roll years of the 1950s. Growing up with 80 children and working on a dairy farm instilled within him a strong work ethic and the ability to interact well in large groups. Mr. Chase graduated from Lanier High School in Macon, GA, and holds a B.S. in Chemistry from Emory University and a M.B.A. from East Tennessee State University. After graduating, Bill was commissioned as an officer in the Navy. Following his naval service, he worked in Research and Development at Eastman Chemical Company. DAVID J. HALLY King: The Social Archeology of a Late Mississippian Town in Northwestern Georgia David Halley is a professor of anthropology at the University of Georgia. He received his Ph.D. in anthropology from Harvard University in 1972, and focuses on the post A.D. 1000 Mississippian culture of northern Georgia and adjacent portions of Alabama, Tennessee, and the Carolinas. Within this region and period, his interests range across the entire settlement and socio-political spectrum from individual households to interpolity relations on the regional level.

PAUL HEMPHILL A Tiger Walk Through History Paul Hemphill is nominated for his historical work, A Tiger Walk Through History. He was sports editor of the Auburn Plainsman during the National Championship season of 1957 and is the author of sixteen books, most recently Leaving Birmingham (1995), nominated for a Pulitzer Prize; Lovesick Blues (2005); and four novels, including Long Gone (2002), which was filmed to much acclaim by HBO. He lives in Atlanta with his wife, Susan Percy, who keeps him on his toes.

PAUL A. LOMBARDO Three Generations, No Imbeciles Paul A. Lombardo is nominated for his historical work, Three Generations, No Imbeciles: Eugenics, the Supreme Court and Buck v. Bell. Lombardo is a lawyer and historian. Lombardo has been instrumental in the movement to solicit apologies and legislative denunciations of past state eugenic laws. These efforts have been successful in seven states, so far. Lombardo has also published numerous articles on topics in health law, medical and legal history, and bioethics. He is a professor of law at Georgia State University’s College of Law.

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J.P. TELOTTE The Mouse Machine: Disney and Technology J. P. Telotte is nominated for his historical work, The Mouse Machine. He is director of Undergraduate Studies in the School of Literature, Communication, and Culture at Georgia Tech. He also co-edits the journal Post Script: Essays in Film and the Humanities, and serves on the editorial boards of several scholarly journals. Author of more than 100 articles on film, television, and literature, Telotte has authored or edited nine books, the most recent of which are Disney TV (2004) and The Essential Science Fiction Television Reader (2008).

DAVID S. WILLIAMS From Mounds to Mega-Churches In From Mounds to Megachurches, David S. Williams offers a sweeping overview of the role religion has played in Georgia’s history, from precolonial days to the modern era. David S. Williams is director of the Honors Program and Meigs Professor of Religion at the University of Georgia, where he has taught since 1989. He is the author of two previous books in religious studies.

Points North article reprinted by permission of author (contined from p. 27)

creative nonfiction history

CHRISTOPHER C. MEYERS The Empire State of the South Christopher C. Meyers is nominated for his historical work, The Empire State of the South: Georgia History in Documents and Essays. Dr. Meyers is a native to New Jersey and attended Florida State University, where he earned a Ph.D. in history. Currently, he is Associate Professor of history at Valdosta State University, where he teaches American history.

Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009 29


creative nonfiction memoir

BRAD CATHERMAN Open Field Running: The Adventure of Selling a Screen Play Brad Catherman is a screenwriter with numerous accolades to his credit. His scripts have won awards in the prestigious competitions of The New Century Writer, The Charleston International Film Festival, The American Screenwriters Association, The Writers Network, and the Skorpeonyx Screenplay Search Competition. Brad writes in a wide variety of genres including romantic comedy, historical period, murder mystery, and drama. He resides in Atlanta, Georgia, with his son, Andy, and is currently Vice President of Gift Planning for nonprofit Senior Citizen Services of Metropolitan Atlanta.

BENYAMIN COHEN My Jesus Year Benyamin Cohen is nominated for his memoir, My Jesus Year. Cohen is the son of an Orthodox rabbi who married the converted daughter of a former Christian minister. He was the founder and editor of the award-winning national magazine American Jewish Life and the online magazine Jewsweek. Prior to that, he edited Torah from Dixie, which was later turned into a book by the same name. He is now the content director for an environmental news network to be launched later this year. He lives in Atlanta with his wife and two dogs.

JACKIE K. COOPER The Sunrise Remembers: Memories from the Journey Jackie K. Cooper is nominated for his memoir The Sunrise Remembers: Memories From the Journey. He is also the author of Journey of a Gentle Southern Man: Reflections from the Road (2004), Chances And Choices: Further Tales of a Gentle Southern Man (2004), Halfway Home: The Journey Continues (2004), and The Bookbinder: More Stories From the Road (2006). Cooper is an entertainment critic/reporter and an after-dinner speaker. He also speaks on the writing process at various schools and universities. He writes for numerous newspapers and web sites. He and his wife live in Perry, Georgia.

E. FRANKLIN EVANS Stand To . . . A Journey to Manhood E. Franklin Evans is a decorated, retired U.S. Army lieutenant colonel who served in the United States Army for over twenty-six years. Frank has a B.S. degree in criminal justice from Columbus State University, an M.A. degree in management and an M.A. degree in computer resources management from Webster University in Saint Louis. As an adjunct college professor, he has taught courses in microcomputer applications for over ten years. He has written and published several short stories and his wartime memoir, Stand To‌A Journey to Manhood. He is currently working on two projects: a nonfiction book documenting his wife’s strength in her long struggle with cancer and the impact on their family plus his first fictional novel, which will be published in the Spring of 2010.

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SUSAN MAY Nick’s New Heart An Auburn University graduate, Susan May lives with Andy, her husband of twentyfive years, and their four children in Cartersville, GA. She works as a substitute teacher and enjoys reading, collecting decorative apples, traveling, castles, hats, James Bond movies, and cross-stitching. Susan leads workshops on time management, organization, finding the correct writer’s conference for you, and making rejection a positive in your writing life.

BETSY HAMLET NICHOLS When Summer Was in the Meadow Betsy Hamlet Nichols, a summa cum laude graduate, Fulbright scholar, and university Professor Emeritus at Georgia Southern University, has drawn from years of research and oral tradition to write a compelling story of her mother’s childhood in the creative memoir, When Summer was in the Meadow. Ms. Nichols received her degrees from the University of Montevallo and the University of Arkansas. She has taught in the English Department of Troy State University and Georgia Southern University.

SYBIL ROSIN Living in the Woods in a Tree: Remembering Blaze Foley Sybil Rosin was born in Lynchburg, Virginia, and holds a B.F.A. degree from the University of North Carolina - Greensboro. A novelist and playwright, she has won a number of awards. America in Transition, a short documentary for which she wrote the narration, was nominated for an Academy Award in that category, and while she wrote for the TV show Guiding Light, it won an emmy for Best Writing. She currently lives in Whitesburg, Georgia.

creative nonfiction memoir

SONYA HUBER Opa Nobody Sonya Huber, an assistant professor of creative writing at Georgia Southern University, has been publishing since 1985. She received her undegraduate degree from Carleton College in sociology/anthropology in 1993, her M.A. degree in public interest journalism from Ohio State University in 2000, and her M.F.A. degree from The Ohio State University in 2004. After living in Minnesota, Illinois, Massachusetts, and Ohio, she moved to Georgia in 2006, where teaches at Georgia Southern University. She also teaches in the LowResidency M.F.A. program at Ashland University.

Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009 31


creative nonfiction specialty

CARMEN ACEVEDO BUTCHER A Little Daily Wisdom Carmen Acevedo Butcher is nominated for her book, A Little Daily Wisdom. Dr. Butcher is an associate professor of English and Scholar-in-Residence at Shorter College. She serves as a commentator for Georgia Public Broadcasting and has also appeared on GPB’s Georgia Gazette and The Issue. She has written for Christianity Today, Christian History & Biography, The Well, Cambridge University Press, Western Michigan University’s Medieval Institute, Magistra: A Journal of Women’s Spirituality in History, and others. In addition to writing articles and giving lectures, she is the author of several books on medieval literature, Christian mystics, and linguistics.

CHRISTOPER C. COLEMAN Solitary Refinement: Breaking Free by Facing Yourself Christopher C. Coleman is nominated for his book Solitary Refinement: Breaking Free by Facing Yourself, 31 Days to Freedom. He is a professional keynote speaker who uses the various challenges of his struggle with cerebral palsy to motivate and encourage individuals. Coleman is a graduate of Southern Polytechnic University and resides in Georgia.

LYNN COULTER Mustard Seeds: Thoughts on the Nature of God and Faith Lynn Coulter is nominated for her book, Mustard Seeds: Thoughts on the Nature of God and Faith. She is a journalist and author whose work has appeared in Delta Sky, Family Circle, Southern Living, Progressive Farmer, Georgia Magazine, and many other publications. Publisher’s Weekly called her first book, Gardening with Heirloom Seeds (June 2006), “a welcome addition to every gardener’s bookshelf.” A native Southerner, Ms. Coulter lives with her husband and son in the Atlanta area.

JOHN DILLARD Overcoming Life’s 9/11’s: Job’s Journey John Dillard is nominated for his book, Overcoming Life’s 9/11’s: Job’s Journey. He is also the author of Charleston Dawn (2006). He lives in Duluth, GA, with his wife and two children. He has been a CPA for more than 30 years and has owned his own firm for over 15 years. John has been involved with the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce, nominated for the chamber’s Small Business Person of the Year in 2006 and received Georgia’s Accountant Advocate of the Year Award for 1999.

JAMIESON HAVERKAMPF Mom Minus Dad Jamieson Haverkampf is nominated for her book, Mom Minus Dad: The Essential Resource Guide for Busy Adults with a Newly Widowed Parent. Haverkampf is a certified Grief Recovering Specialist. Mom Minus Dad has won 2008 Honorable Mention for nonfiction in the Writer’s Digest Magazine‘s 16th Annual International Self-Published Book Awards and Finalist in the parenting/family category in the 2008 Indie Book Awards. Haverkampf reside in Atlanta, Georgia.

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HARRY G. LEFEVER Sacred Places: A Guide to Civil Rights Sites in Atlanta, Georgia Harry LeFever, professor emeritus of Sociology at Spelman College in Atlanta, taught for three years at Eastern Mennonite College in Harrisonburg, Virginia, and published two books, Turtle Bogue: Afro-Caribbean Life and Culture in a Costa Rican Village (1992) and Undaunted by the Fight: Spelman College and the Civil Rights Movement, 1957–1967 (2005). He has published articles in Anthropology and Humanism Quarterly, Sociological Analysis, Atlanta Historical Journal, Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, Labor History, and South Eastern Latin Americanist.

CAROLE MARSH Carole Marsh’s Secret, Tips, Trick and More to Prompt Wow Writing Carole Marsh, founder and CEO of award-winning publisher Gallopade International, is the creative force behind more than 15,000 children’s books and supplemental educational materials. Carole Marsh’s instinctive kid-friendly approach to make reading and learning both fun and educational earned Gallopade International the 2002 Teacher’s Choice Award from Learning Magazine. In 2004, Learning Magazine presented Gallopade International and Carole Marsh Mysteries with the Teacher’s Choice for the Family Award.

MICHAEL C. PAGE Sacred Places: A Guide to Civil Rights Sites in Atlanta, Georgia Michael C. Page is the geospatial librarian for the Robert W.Woodruff Library at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. He has B.A. and M.A. degrees in geography from Georgia State University. An Atlanta native, Michael Page resides in Atlanta with his wife and four children.

STEVE PENLEY The Reconstruction of America Steve Penley has been nominated for his book, The Reconstruction of America. Born in Chattanooga, TN, Steve Pendley has been drawing for as long as he can remember. By the time he reached college at the University of Georgia, he had taught himself to render objects with incredible realism. He later attended the School of Visual Arts in New York before returning to Atlanta. He has received the Flourish Award from Kennesaw State University and an award from the Georgia Council of the Arts.

creative nonfiction specialty

DOUG JANOUSEK Home Cookin’ Illustrated Doug Janousek has been cooking since he was a youngster, with his mother as his first and, in many ways, best teacher in her Nebraska kitchen. Mr. Janousek earned his B.S. degree in journalism and English, with a minor in political science. In 2004, he attended Le Cordon Bleu program at Orlando Culinary Academy in Orlando, FL. For the last several years, he has worked as a freelance food/recipes columnist as well as a personal chef in Florida and Georgia.

Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009 33


creative nonfiction specialty

BOB RAUSCH The Power of Personal Energy & The Secret Power in Stress For more than 28 years, Dr. Bob Rausch has served as a coach/consultant for corporate leaders and teams in the United States, Canada and Europe. Dr. Bob Rausch completed his Ph.D. in clinical psychology. Dr. Rausch has written and published many articles and, as a result, he received The Readers Favorite Award in 2003 and 2004 from the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association International.

JOEL ROTH The 20% Solution Joel L. Roth has spent over 50 years in a business career that is extremely diversified. He holds undergraduate degrees in engineering and operations research from Case Institute of Technology (now Case Western Reserve University), and an M.B.A. in accounting and industrial management from New York University. He also pursued his Ph.D. at New York University in marketing and economics. In his spare time, Mr. Roth serves as a consultant, speaker, trainer and seminar-workshop leader.

JENNIFER SPIVEY Esther: Reflections from an Unexpected Life Jennifer Spivey is nominated for her book, Esther: Reflections from an Unexpected Life. She lives in the Atlanta area with her husband and three children. Jennifer and her husband have been in full time ministry for over ten years. Her ministry experience is broad, and she has had opportunity to minister in many areas. Jennifer has also been interviewed in print, on television, and on the radio since the release of her book.

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KELLY L. STONE Time to Write Kelly L. Stone is nominated for her book, Time to Write: More Than 100 Professional Writers Reveal How to Fit Writing Into Your Busy Life. She has written several articles that have appeared in Family Circle, Writer’s Digest, Cat Fancy, Chicken Soup for the Soul, and Cup of Comfort. Her novel, Grave Secret (2007) was called “powerful” and “well written” by Romantic Times Books Reviews. Ms. Stone is also a licensed professional counselor and holds a graduate degree in counseling from Florida State University.


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Georgia Writers Writing Conference

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Georgia Author of the Year Awards June 13, 2009 35


45th Georgia Author of the Year