I am both a visual artist and a writer, Many years ago I was introduced to your organization by member, B.J. Miller. She had read a short story I had written for another group and wanted to publish it in your newsletter, which she did.
Brendan O’Gara has passion for the extraordinary and lives life as if a new adventure is just around the corner. He has been an avid gamer since he was a child and continues to play D&D, Pathfinder and other RPGs. His experiences gaming and passion for cooking gave him inspiration to write a fantastical cookbook. He has published novels of dark fantasy, and steampunk fantasy in collaboration with his wife, Lori O’Gara. When not gaming or writing, Brendan spends his time on family adventures with his five children and a Staffordshire named, Harley Quinn.
Charlie Davis graduated from Florida State University with a major in Insurance and Real Estate. He is retired from careers in Insurance, Real Estate and Residential Construction. He devotes full time to his new writing career and recently completed his fourth book, “Hyer’s Point,” a World War II era novel. He is the father of four grown children, Grandpa to nine grandchildren and Great Grandpa seven great grandchildren, all wonderful people. Charlie and his wife, Sandra, also a published author, live in Gulf Breeze, Florida.
Since retiring from a three-decades long career as a Speech-Language Pathologist, Claire has reunited with the muses of creativity and resumed the writing life. Her award-winning flash fiction, poetry, and memoir vignettes have appeared in thirty-five venues and journals of literary and visual arts, such as Panoply, Persimmon Tree, Saw Palm Journal of Florida Literature and Arts, Barely South Review and the innovative Lucky Jefferson Collection, which was featured in Poets & Writers magazine. A WFLF/Emerald Coast Writers former board member, Claire conceived the organization's In Focus contest for Flash Memoir and served as a selection editor for the 2019 and 2021 editions of The Emerald Coast Review. She is currently Poetry Editor for the national quarterly magazine, The Pen Woman. Driver Side Window, her collection of poems, prose and interpretive photos, is available from Amazon and other bookstores.
Diane Skelton is an author and award-winning feature writer. She created Weird Pensacola, a popular event brochure for Foo Foo Festival Funny Side of Florida hosted by WFLF and was managing editor for Emerald Coast Review XXI. Her work has been published in The English Journal, national fraternal publications, and regional publications as Mississippi Magazine, Florida Hockey Life, and The Gulf Breeze News. Her newest book is A Literary Traveler’s Guide to the Gulf South (2022). Currently, she teaches memoir classes at the Gulf Breeze, Senior Center and facilitates an ECW writing group. Before moving to Florida, she advised award-winning student publications in Louisiana, Texas, and Kansas. She taught high school journalism, photojournalism, and English, as well as Mass Communications at Tarrant County College (Texas) and advised student publications at Washburn University (Kansas). Her blog, The Gumbo Diaries, showcases articles on literary travel and writers. She has published two memoirs, The Gumbo Diaries: Mississippi and Beyond (2015) and Thanks for Asking (2020). She is a member of Florida Writers Association and a patron to National League of American Pen Women. She holds a B.S. in Journalism and English from University of Southern Mississippi and a Masters in Journalism from University of Kansas.
Dr. Sandra Lockney Davis
Dr. Davis was a Program Director and Headquarters Librarian for the U. S. Army Special Services for eight years. Her other careers included: Library of Congress, Legislative Reference Services, editorial typist, ACS Gmbh, bilingual travel reservation assistant in Stuttgart, Germany, Real Estate Broker Associate in Ft Walton Beach, Florida and District Department Head of Learning Resources at Pensacola Junior College where she also taught Internet Research and Introduction to Education. She earned her Doctor of Educational Administration at Florida State University in 1990 and retired from the college in 2008. She and her husband, Charlie Davis also a published author, are both retired and living the dream in NW Florida.
James Lynn Smith
James Lynn Smith was a storyteller as a teenager, entertaining youth in his neighborhood. After livelihood as a research physicist, he grew serious about writing fiction, became assistant editor and contributor for a small print periodical for a year, and continues to write. One of his early fictional stories won first prize in Calliope (Calliopeontheweb.org). Following fiction publications appeared in The Emerald Coast Review, issues of The Legend, the Mensa Bulletin, and an anthology, Beneath the Rainbow. Some stories also have online presence.
Jeannie Zokan, author of The Existence of Pity and award-winning Courage Without Grace, grew up in Colombia, South America as the daughter of missionaries. Her love of books led her to study Library Science at Baylor University. She moved to Washington, DC to attend The George Washington University, and much like Josie in Courage Without Grace, she became a palm reader there. DC’s cold weather finally did her in, so when the chance came to head south, she took her motorcycle to Florida’s Gulf Coast to write stories for the local newspaper. She now lives ten minutes from the beach with her husband, a dog, and a cat. When she’s not writing or editing, she’s reading, playing tennis, visiting their two grown daughters, or practicing yoga in their garage gym.
Lori O’Gara is a writer of contemporary fiction, fantasy, and real-life commentary. She is an advocate of human decency, believes that magic is real and love is a gift from the Devine. Lori is happiest with her feet in the sugar white sand on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. When not at the beach, writing or reading, she can be found wandering the stacks in her library, watching Doctor Who or spending time with her family. A large blended family that consists of six children, seven grandchildren and one dog named Harley Quinn.
Mary Gutierrez is a Latina and Indigenous writer. She has been published in numerous local and national poetry zines and magazines. She has one self-published book, "Naked in the Rain" and is currently working on two more poetry books/chapbooks for publication. She is an Environmental Scientist by profession and passion, which is often reflected in some of her writings.
Tom Roberts is the author of an historical novel and a short story collection. In 2019, at the Florida Writers Association’s Royal Palm Literary Awards, his historical novel, Lost Scrolls of Archimedes, was awarded Gold for best unpublished historical novel (self-published in March 2020). A software engineer in a previous life, Mr. Roberts began writing in 2017. He is avid reader of ancient history and technology and a member of the Florida Writers Association, the Atlanta Writers Club, James River Writers, and Emerald Coast Writers. His favorite authors are Bernard Cornwell, Patrick O’Brian, Steven Saylor, and Arthur C. Clarke. An Air Force veteran, he loves dogs and enjoys hiking, classical music, video games, and college sports. He lives with his wife in Pensacola, Florida.