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Authors & Illustrators

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About our Authors

(alphabetically by last name)

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Above: Left to Right: Kerry E.B. Black, Jeremy Cole, Todd Cole

Below: Susanna Fussenegger, David Q. Hall

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Above: Left to Right: Jerry Morton, Debra R. Sanchez (d.r. sanchez), Chris (Telesz) Siddall

Below: Sandra Spirnock, Beverly Sutherland

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Above: Megan E. Vance, Ruth Ochs Webster, D. L. Williams.

Kerry E.B. Black lives in a swamp along a foggy river outside a city of steel and zombies. Her feline friends, Poe, Hemingway, and P.D. James keep her company when she whittles away evenings writing. Daytime hours she devotes to her adored and adorable family, including her middle daughter's service dog. Numerous publications, magazines, and podcasts have included Kerry's works. She is a proud Rough Writer at Carrot Ranch, a member of Nomadic Worsters,  and a contributing writer with the Games Omniverse team.

Jeremy Cole is a veteran youth pastor in St. Marys, Georgia.  He enjoys traveling, camping, fishing, gardening and cooking.  While not enjoying time outdoors, Jeremy spends time with his family and their two dogs. Jeremy is a long-time resident of St. Marys, Georgia and proudly serves in the same church in which he grew up, St. Marys United Methodist.


Todd Cole - Todd Cole is a retired, 34 year veteran of teaching elementary students at Laurel Elementary in New Castle, Pa. Currently, he is an instructor at his alma mater, Westminster College, in New Wilmington, Pa. Todd resides in New Wilmington, with his golden retriever puppy, Titan Cole. He enjoys traveling to Vermont to visit his brother and his family. Todd relishes in sitting on the beach of Southern Maine, as he did every summer vacation with his parents and brother. He is a tenor in his church choir and worship team at New Wilmington Presbyterian Church. Cole is an active member of the local Rotary and is a contributor for WFMJ-TV ’s Morning Show where he shares his knowledge of children’s literature and advice for raising a reader. 

Susanna Fussenegger was born and raised  in Budapest, Hungary. At age 20 she left her homeland and lived  in West Germany, then moved on to the United States. She has been a naturalized citizen since 1972. An avid reader and educator she decided to try her luck with creative writing. She is eager to pass on her story to her family about  the arrival to these great shores.


The Rev. Dr. David Quincy Hall is a retired Presbyterian pastor living with his family, and two dogs in Oceanside, Southern California. David is a lifelong civil rights activist, environmentalist, and social justice advocate. His first two experiences in pastoral ministry were in the inner-city areas of San Francisco, California and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in the 1960's. 

His parish ministry was with congregations across the country in Pennsylvania, Michigan, Iowa, Wisconsin and California, in diverse settings including metropolitan, inner city, suburban, medium-sized and small cities, small town, rural, and the North Woods. Learn more about his Death Most Unholy series, and his Native American Legend series.

Jerry Morton Jerry’s diverse experiences through his childhood into his adult years paired with a developed style of storytelling has enabled him to share with others the insights life continuously presents to him. A natural student of psychology, he has a rich understanding of the unique gifts of each person with whom he interacts. He finds those gifts in an angry child, a professional warrior, a doctoral intern in psychology, a parent of a child with special needs, and an educator assisting that child. His stories reach into the hearts of those in need of support and those who provide the support needed.


Debra R. Sanchez has moved over thirty times and has lived in five states in two far. She and her husband have three adult children, five grandchildren, and a dog and a cat. She leads writing groups, workshops and retreats. Her writing has won awards in various genres, including children’s stories, poetry, fantasy, fiction, and creative nonfiction. Several of her plays and monologues have been produced and published. Other works have been published in literary magazines, newspapers, and anthologies.

Chris (Telesz) Siddall was born on the farm in Volant, Pennsylvania, where Tommy Girl/Willow was born. She grew up in a happy, large, tight-knit family, many of whom have built homes on the farm’s acreage. Chris graduated from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and spent thirty years in a business career in Pennsylvania, Florida, and Georgia. She and her husband, Marvin, are retired and currently live just miles away from the farm so they can be close to family. They spend their winters in Florida.


Sandra Spirnock lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She grew up in Youngstown, Ohio where she earned a Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree in Business Education from Youngstown State University. Since retiring after 35 years of teaching, writing has become her favorite pastime. Her writing is included in Celebrate: A Collection of Life’s Celebrations, an anthology compiled by Debra Sanchez. Serendipity is her first book.

Beverly Jane Sutherland, a former resident of Twilight and Speers Boroughs, now resides in Jefferson Hills.  A lifelong native of Pennsylvania, she earned a B.S. degree in Secondary Ed. Communications with a Theatre Concentration from the California University of Pennsylvania and is currently employed as an Instructional Assistant with the McKeesport Area School District.  Her love for children and her vivid imagination have inspired her to write stories that teach as well as entertain. 

Megan E. Vance  has been writing poetry since high school days and never can tell when a poem might pop into her head. She has been married 35 years to her biggest supporter Kevin, is a mother to three, and grandmother to three. 
In addition to writing, Megan enjoys reading the Bible, sewing, quilting, and treasures time with her “grandboys.” 
Megan is the author of a devotional book called Sure Mercies: Hope for the Suffering. (4RV Publishing, 2015) She also has numerous written articles for magazines for children and for adults. Her work has been included in two anthologies by Tree Shadow Press: Prompted Prodded Published: How Writing Prompts Can Help All Writers (2016) and Celebrate: A Collection of Life’s Celebrations (2019). She lives near Pittsburgh in Natrona Heights, Pennsylvania.

Ruth Ann Ochs Webster was born and raised in Covington, Kentucky, a town on the Ohio River--the edge of the South. The location sparked a lifelong interest in both history and travel. She now lives in metro Pittsburgh, near the confluence of the two rivers that form the Ohio. She is a retired National Board-Certified Teacher, having specialized in language arts and social studies. Her teaching career spanned from early elementary through adult education in Appalachian Maryland. Ruth is an avid amateur historian and genealogist, member of museums and societies throughout the Eastern United States.

D.L. Williams was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. In 2010 she graduated from Westminster College with a BA in Broadcast Communications and Creative Writing. She now works in closed captioning. Williams met Annzie in 2019 when she volunteered at her local therapeutic riding stable. She instantly fell in love with the girl’s tenacity, sassy sense of humor, and the love she shared with Lil Girl. It wasn’t long before she knew she had to write their story. Williams’ short stories appear in Prompted, Prodded, Published: How Writing Prompts Can Help All Writers and Celebrate: A Collection of Life’s Celebrations. Annzie the Brave is her first children’s book.

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About our Illustrators

(alphabetically by last name)

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Left to Right: Cassidy N. Bodnar, Michelle Bowden Dobi, Beverly Martinko, Ashley Plummer 

Cassidy N. Bodnar is a young artist from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She has won a few awards in art. Cassidy studied Illustration and Animation at Edinboro University and the Community College of Allegheny County. She enjoys drawing cartoons, painting landscapes and doing metal work.

Belinda Cohen After graduating from The College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, VA, Belinda Cohen enjoyed an exciting career as an award-winning author, teacher, and journalist. She discovered her passion for painting late in her career. And made her debut as an illustrator in the series of Native American Legends. 


Michelle Bowden Dobi has been an elementary teacher for over 30 years, teaching children in 1st, 2nd & 5th grades. She is currently teaching K-6 art. Besides illustrating, she also enjoys creating both functional & decorative pottery. She has two sons and two grandchildren, and lives in Ellwood City, PA with her husband and their cat.

Laura Garvin is an illustrator and dreamer who has a passion for drawing cute characters and
colorful scenes. She lives in Pittsburgh, PA with her cat Blueberry. Even though she’s never
tried chocolate covered spaghetti, Laura doesn’t think it sounds too bad.


Beverly Martinko was born and raised in western Pennsylvania and studied art at Edinboro University and Youngstown State University.  She currently resides in Wilmington Township, PA, where she enjoys gardening, reading, painting and photography. 

Ashley Plummer grew up in Sioux Falls, SD where she developed a love for both art and horses. She started horseback riding in middle school and continued to develop that love of horses through working at the stable, volunteering at the local equine therapy program, and later teaching riding lessons during summers. She attended South Dakota State University (SDSU) where she graduated with a degree in Art Education in 2015. She now lives in Milbank, SD where she teaches high school art and enjoys spending time with her horse Oreo and working on her art.

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