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Matthew Ames is a husband and father of two. He is also a partner at an Atlanta law firm, where he handles complex business disputes. He has been recognized as a Georgia Super Lawyer for several years running and was selected by his peers for inclusion in the 2023 edition of The Best Lawyers in America.

In addition to his law practice, Matt previously served as Board Chair at a local arts organization and has also served on the boards of several Atlanta non-profit organizations. 

On most weekends, you can find Matt and the light of his life, Liz, cheering wildly for their boys out on the soccer pitch. 

THROUGH THE IMPOSSIBLE is his first book.

Author headshot of Jason Cannon


Jason is a best-selling author and publisher, as well as an award-winning director, actor, improviser, playwright, and teacher. He has an MFA in Directing, a Masters in Drama, and a quarter-century in professional theatre.

As an actor Jason has portrayed everything from a rapping dinosaur to a robot and from a hitman to Hamlet. He has written plays about J.R.R. Tolkien and Stevie Wonder, directed plays about hiccuping dragons and foul-mouthed puppets, and once while improvising he was attacked by a stage light.

Learn more at



Mary Lu is an aunt to seventeen nieces and nephews. She also is mama to two strapping fellows and treat-giver to several grandpuppies and grandkitties. She lives in sunny Florida with her wonderful husband of 48 years, Bob.

Along with writing, she loves to sing, and if you ever are her dinner guest, she will send you home with all the leftovers!

WHO WRECKED THE WITCH-A-THON? is her first book.


Bob Danna is a scientist, an engineer, a secular humanist, and insatiably curious about the world and the universe. He served as a naval officer in Admiral Rickover’s nuclear reactors program before becoming a business leader and ultimately retiring from Deloitte Consulting as a managing director.

He is a world traveler, both for business and pleasure, and has accumulated millions of airline flight miles. He is also an “experience junkie” who loves anything live: music, comedy, sports, theatre, you name it.

Bob currently lives in Las Vegas with his long-term partner, Laci. He was twice married and divorced, has one daughter, and—most importantly—two grandchildren, who were the inspiration for Bob to start writing.

MY CURIOUS LIFE is his first book.


Estrella Engelhardt has been a student of life for 82 years and is the author of LETTERS TO JIM: MEMOIR OF A 40-YEAR LOVE STORY. She is mother to two adult children and stepmother to five more.

She has been involved in International Folk Dancing for twenty years and theatre performance for sixteen years. She also became a Massage Therapist at age 55 and a Hair Stylist from the Vidal Sassoon Academy in 1975.

She graduated Panama Canal College with a degree in Physical Education/Psychology, and has traveled extensively throughout Europe, Mexico, Central and South America, Panama, Israel, and Scandinavia.

LETTERS TO JIM is her first book.

headshot of Marc D. Johnson


Marc D. Johnson, Jr. is a Philadelphia native and the poet behind BURNING SAGE. His interest in the arts began before he could walk. His childhood was full of playing the harmonica and banging on anything resembling a drum until at age 13 he shifted to the pursuit of acting.

Then at age 17, a Creative Writing class blew his understanding of the world wide open, and Marc has been writing poetry ever since.

Now in his mid-20s, Marc still acts, still plays a plethora of instruments, and continues to pursue clarity—about himself, about others, about life—through writing.

BURNING SAGE is Marc's fourth published collection of poetry.

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Dan Landon began his career in New York as an actor, appearing on Broadway (for one opening night) and Off-Broadway. He then turned to theatre management, first at the American Place Theatre, and then for three decades with the Shuberts.

Dan is also a produced playwright and published novelist, and now adds "memoirist" to his resume with FROM THE BACK OF THE HOUSE. His plays have appeared Off-Broadway and regionally.

He lived for many years in Montclair, New Jersey, with his wife, Lyle, and their three children. After his retirement, they moved to Bradenton, Florida, and both he and Lyle are very active in the theatre scene down on the Gulf Coast. 


Lieutenant Colonel (Retired) Scott Mann is a former U.S. Army Green Beret with multiple tours in Afghanistan. Scott is also the founder of Task Force Pineapple, a group of volunteer veterans advocating for the abandoned Afghan People.

He is also the founder of the 501C3 The Heroes Journey, where he helps warriors, first responders, and their families find their voice and tell their story in order to bridge the civil-military divide.

After undergoing a difficult transition from military life and combat where he almost took his own life, Scott became a playwright and actor in his recent play and film about the Afghan War called LAST OUT: ELEGY OF A GREEN BERET, which has been seen by over 80,000 people, toured 16 cities, has led to 250+ PTS interventions by trained counselors, and was performed for 75 Gold Star Families.


Sam is the author of QUEEN PALM. He was a lifelong actor, writer, humorist, teacher, and made the best Old Fashioned you ever did have.

Learn more about Sam and his legacy.


Christina Ann Penland (1992-2022) was an old soul who loved music and the arts. She ran an online designer/vintage boutique store for many years. She loved picking through the bins at Goodwill to find those diamond-in-the-rough items for her site.

Though she struggled with mental illness and addiction, she never stopped creating, and treated her friends and family with unending generosity and love. 

BLIND TO OUR OWN WINGS is a collection of Christina’s poetry, photographs, and mixed media art, curated by her mother and closest friends, as a way to both honor Christina’s memory and to offer hope to others who feel like the world has no place for them.


Maria is a Brazilian-born educator and artist, on a passionate mission to empower individuals to become the protagonists of their own lives. With extensive experience in theater, mindfulness, and cross-cultural engagement, she weaves together the transformative power of theater, Ayurveda, and meditation to guide others on a journey of self-discovery and well-being.

Maria’s deep commitment to personal growth led her to become a certified Chopra Meditation teacher, Reiki Master, and Ayurvedic Health Counselor. Through her company, Atomica Arts, she pioneers the integration of mindfulness practices into her artistic and educational endeavors, nurturing creativity and fostering well-being through arts-based activities.

As a National Arts Integration Consultant, Maria excels in designing and implementing transformative residencies and workshops with a strong emphasis on theater, improvisation, mindfulness, social change, and mental health. Her remarkable contributions to the field of arts and education have garnered her recognition, including receiving the 2019 Arts Leadership Award from The Arts and Cultural Alliance of Sarasota County. Additionally, she was honored with the prestigious 2022 Appleton Arts Integration Award from the Sarasota Performing Arts Center Foundation.

To embark on a journey of empowerment, mindfulness, and creativity with Maria, visit her website at and discover the transformative possibilities she brings through her art, teaching, and holistic well-being practices.

BE THE PROTAGONIST is her first book.


Carrie is an award-winning career newspaper journalist who has served on the staffs of the New York Times, the Los Angeles Herald-Examiner, the Albuquerque Journal, and Albuquerque Tribune. Since 2010 she has served as a columnist, dance critic, and arts writer for the Sarasota Herald-Tribune on Florida’s Gulf coast.

Seidman’s columns, reviews, and long-form narratives have earned honors from local, state, and national journalism and mental health organizations, including Mental Health America’s National Media Award and the Florida Society of Newspaper Editor’s Gold Medal for Public Service.

A PLACE AT THE TABLE is her second book. Her previous book, FACEing MENTAL ILLNESS: THE ART OF ACCEPTANCE, showcased profiles and artwork from her award-winning year-long mental health fellowship project for the Carter Center for Mental Health Journalism.


A graduate of Barnard College and the Columbia University School of Journalism, Seidman is the mother of a one adult son who lives with genetic and mental health disorders.

A two-time breast cancer survivor and lifelong dancer, she enjoys ballroom dancing, yoga, and long-distance walking. 


Mark is an award-winning writer for the stage, television, and film. He lives in a small Massachusetts town with more cows than people, and is the author of THE MIRROR MAN.

His dozens of plays and musicals include Freud’s Last Session, Dancing Lessons, and Becoming Dr. Ruth. Mark also wrote the children’s book Three Cups and the comedic memoir Walking Evil: How Man’s Best Friend Became My Worst Enemy.

Mark’s work has received the Lucille Lortel Award, the Outer Critics Circle Award, and the Off-Broadway Alliance Award. He is an Associate Artist at the Barrington Stage Company in the Berkshires, where a theater has been named after him.