AUTHOR GUEST OF HONOR – SEANAN MCGUIRE
Seanan McGuire writes things. It is very difficult to make her stop, which is probably because she’s won quite a few awards for writing things, including the Hugo, Nebula, Campbell, Locus, and Alex Awards. She is also a musician, performing filk music (the folk music of science fiction and fantasy) at conventions all over the world. She lives in Seattle with her cats, who are spoiled beyond all reason, and is very excited to be coming to meet you all.
ARTIST GUEST OF HONOR – MELISSA GAY
Melissa Gay is a Nashville-based illustrator of books and tabletop roleplaying games whose client list includes Baen Books, Llewellyn Worldwide, Hay House, Apex Press, and many, many game companies. Her Imaginative Realist work has been featured in ImagineFX Magazine, io9, tor.com, and several of the Infected By Art anthologies. She is co-founder of the Bird Whisperer Project, a member of the Changeling Artist Collective, and is a moderator/facilitator of the art business group One Fantastic Week. The Association of Science-Fiction and Fantasy Artists has twice honored her work with the Chesley Award. The Light Grey Art Lab awarded her one of its coveted artist residencies in Iceland during the summer of 2019, where she gave a presentation on art, awe, and the concept of sacred space.
A former scientific illustrator, she is constantly seeking the perfect balance between precise detail and hazy obscurity to better engage the imagination of the viewer. Recurring themes in her work are flying things that should not fly (whales, sheep, etc.), faraway visions into deep space as if seen in a dream, and moments of surreal otherworldliness in a terrestrial setting. She creates her art as an act of love, but also as an act of defiance against her own mental health issues. Her art is an invitation into her worlds and a wish for the viewer to soar, to find their own magic, regardless of circumstances. The videos she makes for the Fantastic Fridays segment of the One Fantastic Week YouTube channel focus largely on encouraging artists of all kinds to know themselves, to be kind to themselves, and to stretch the boundaries of their own creativity.
Apart from drawing and painting, she is never happier than when in the woods hunting for secret waterfalls, climbing on rocks, or staring into the night sky. She can whistle a passable screech owl call.
Find her at www.melissagay.com, melissa.gay.art on Facebook, MelissaGay on Patreon, @melissagay23 on Twitter, @melissagayart on Instagram, and tune in for her Fantastic Friday videos on the One Fantastic Week YouTube channel.
AUTHOR GUEST – ROB CERIO
Rob Cerio was born at an early age, and has since grown much more hair. As a comedy writer, he denies all rumors of making inappropriate jokes at funerals. He has published four novels, six short stories, and helped author a YouTube web series. He has also won two awards for his writing contributions to his local 48hr Film Festival. He now lives in Metairie, Louisiana with his lovely wife, two adorable step kids, and a small annoying dog named after a large Japanese monster.
AUTHOR GUEST – ERNEST RUSSELL
Ernest Russell has written for Pro Se Productions, Beyond the Threshold Studios, and the literary journal Violet Windows. Some of his favorite things (besides coffee) are Science Fiction, Horror, Steampunk, and Fantasy books and movies. His writing is split amongst those genres and when not writing can be found playing board games or a RPG In the last year, Ernest has joined the staff at Pro Se as contributing submissions editor and, as time allows, content and copy editor.
He has managed the Facebook page for The Week in Geek 99.5 WRNO Talk radio and still makes contributions to this great show, a radio show dedicated to all things geek.
AUTHOR GUEST – KIMBERLY RICHARDSON
Kimberly B. Richardson is the author of Tales From a Goth Librarian, The Decembrists, Tales From a Goth Librarian II, Mabon/Pomegranate, Open A, and The Path of a Tea Traveler. She is the creator of the Agnes Viridian series, the Maven Chronicles, the Tea Traveler Chronicles, and the Order of the Black Silk trilogy. She is also the editor of Realms of Imagination: An Urban Fantasy Anthology and the Steampunk anthology series Dreams of Steam, and has stories in multiple anthologies. Ms. Richardson was the 2015 David McCrosky Volunteer Photographer in Residence for Elmwood Cemetery in Memphis, Tennessee, and the Photography II winner of the 2018 Raymond James Affiliate Art Show. Ms. Richardson is the founder and owner of Viridian Tea Company and a World Tea Academy Certified Tea Specialist. Ms. Richardson is also the founder of Tea Junkie World, a blog dedicated to the Tea Lifestyle.