GRNW, the only conference in the Pacific Northwest to focus on LGBTQ romance fiction, is so excited for it’s fourth annual conference, the 2016 Gay Romance Northwest Meet-Up on September 24, 2016 at the Seattle Public Library!
Read biographies of the attending authors and speakers below and join the GRNW group on GoodReads to participate in more discussions with attendees!
2016 Author Spots: If you wish to apply to be part of GRNW as a 2016 Attending Author, please email us with your interest. All authors applying for a featured author spot at the conference and book festival must be a published author of LGBTQ romance fiction.
GRNW 2016 Attending Authors and Panelists include:
- Astrid Amara
- Eric Andrews-Katz
- Jove Belle
- Dev Bentham
- Austin Chant
- L.C. Chase
- Charley Descoteaux
- Cjane Elliot
- Rhys Ford
- Ginn Hale
- Lou Harper
- Tobi Hill-Meyer
- Laylah Hunter
- Amanda Jean
- Nicole Kimberling
- Morticia Knight
- Christopher Moss
- M.J. O’Shea
- EE Ottoman
- JK Pendragon
- Alex Powell
- AK Rose
- EJ Russell
- Andrea Speed
- Karelia Stetz-Waters
- Tracy Timmons-Gray
- Yolanda Wallace
- Sheri Lewis Wohl
GRNW 2016 Author and Panelist Biographies
Astrid Amara lives in Bellingham, Washington with her husband, four dogs, two goats, and one horse. She’s a graduate of Western Washington University, a former Peace Corps Volunteer, and a bureaucrat by day. She is an active volunteer for greyhound adoption and, when not doing anything with animals or writing, can usually be found sleeping, because she is also extremely lazy. Her novel The Archer’s Heart was a finalist for the 2008 Lambda Literary Award. This and her other titles are available through her website at: AstridAmara.com.
Eric Andrews-Katz has been writing since he could hold a pen. Originally from New York, Eric was 12 when his family moved to Florida without consulting him. After studying creative writing and journalism at University of South Florida, he attended the Florida School of Massage. He has a successful Licensed Massage Practice (The Massage Guy™) and currently, with his partner Alan, calls Seattle home. In 2003 they were married.
Eric’s first short story, Mr. Grimm’s Faery Tale, was published in So Fey: Queer Fairy Fiction. The anthology was nominated in 2008 for the Lambda Literary Award, and the short story was nominated for the 2008 Spectrum Award for Best Short Fiction. Other anthologies include: The Best Date Ever: True Stories That Celebrate Gay Relationships, Charmed Lives: Gay Spirit in Storytelling (nominated for the 2007 Lambda Literary Award), Gay City: Vols 2 & 3 (nominated for 2010 Lambda Literary Award), and Zombiality: A Queer Bent on the Undead (nominated for the 2010 Lambda Literary Award). He co-edited the anthology Gay City vol 4: At Second Glance, and also wrote the introduction and a contributing story. His first novel The Jesus Injection was released November 2012 from Bold Strokes Books
For more about Eric go to https://ericandrewskatz.com.
Jove Belle started life in the middle of nowhere. Literally. That’s a place in southwestern Idaho where they grow a lot of crops, know each other’s business, and drive forever to buy groceries. Now she lives in the Pacific Northwest with her girlfriend of twenty years and an assortment of children and animals. She is blissfully happy and a bit unsure what she possibly could have done to deserve such a beautiful life. Jove has been a part of the lesbian fiction publishing community for almost a decade. In addition to being an author and editor, Jove is a founding member and co-admin of the popular lesbian fiction blog Women and Words. She also works as a consultant with Book Enthusiast Promotions, an online marketing company for fiction authors. And she is the Head of Marketing US for Ylva Publishing. To learn more about Jove, visit her website at http://jovebelle.com/.
Once upon a time, Dev Bentham lived in Seattle. More recently, she landed in the upper Midwest, where she survives the winter cold by writing gay love stories. Personally, she has a checkered romantic history with men and women but has finally found her own happy ending. Her books include Moving in Rhythm, August Ice, Learning from Isaac, Fields of Gold, Sacred Hearts, Bread, Salt and Wine, Driving into the Sun and Whistle Blower, as well as the newly rereleased Nobody’s Home and Painting in the Rain. Visit Dev’s website.
Austin Chant is a bitter millennial, passable chef, and a queer, trans writer of romance and erotica. His fiction centers on trans characters who always, always get the love they deserve. Austin cohosts the Hopeless Romantic, a podcast dedicated to exploring LGBTQIA+ love stories and the art of writing romance. He currently lives in Seattle, in a household of wildly creative freelancers who all spend too much time playing video games. He lives on Twitter @austinchanted and his website can be found at austinchanted.weebly.com. He is the author of Coffee Boy and, in the Magic & Mayhem anthology, Caroline’s Heart.
Artist by day, author by night, L.C. Chase is a hopeless romantic and adventure seeker. After a decade of road tripping on three continents, she now calls the Canadian West Coast home. When not writing tales of beautiful men falling love, L.C. can be found designing book covers of said beautiful men, reading, drawing, running the trails with her goofy four-legged buddy who, if he were human, would be a stand-up comedian, and giving in to fighting her root beer addiction. Visit L.C.’s website.
Charley Descoteaux has always heard voices. She was relieved to learn they were fictional characters, and started writing when they insisted daydreaming just wasn’t good enough. In exchange, they let her sleep once in a while. Charley grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area during a drought, and found her true home in the soggy Pacific Northwest. She has survived earthquakes, tornadoes, and floods, but couldn’t make it through one day without stories. Her books include the USA Today recommended Buchanan House series—Buchanan House, “Pride Weekend”, Tiny House, Safe House, and coming in December of 2016, Holiday Weekend—as well as the Bisexual Romances Torque and Cascades. Visit Charley’s website.
After years of hearing characters chatting away in her head, CJane Elliott finally decided to put them on paper and hasn’t looked back since. A psychotherapist by training, CJane enjoys writing sexy, passionate stories that also explore the human psyche. In her spare time, CJane can be found dancing, listening to music, or watching old movies. Her husband and son support her writing habit by staying out of the way when they see her hunched over, staring intensely at her laptop. Her books include the award-winning Serpentine Series of novels: Serpentine Walls, Aidan’s Journey, and Sex, Love, and Videogames, and the Wild and Precious Series of bisexual romance novellas: Wild and Precious, There You Are, and Sand-Man’s Family. Find out more about Cjane at http://www.cjaneelliott.com.
Rhys admits to sharing the house with three cats of varying degrees of black fur and a ginger cairn terrorist. Rhys is also enslaved to the upkeep a 1979 Pontiac Firebird, a Toshiba laptop, and an overworked red coffee maker. Rhys is the author of multiple gay romance series including the Cole McGinnis series, Sinners series, and the Hellsinger series. Visit Rhys at her blog, on Facebook, and on Twitter. And at the Starbucks down the street. No really, they’re 24/7. And a drive-thru. It’s like heaven.
Ginn Hale lives with her lovely wife and two indolent cats in the Pacific Northwest. She spends many of the rainy days tinkering with devices and words and can often be sighted herding other people’s dogs, bees and goats. Her first novel,Wicked Gentlemen, was a Lambda Literary Award Finalist and won the Spectrum Award for best novel. Her most recent publications include the Lord of the White Hell books, the ten part epic fantasy serial, The Rifter, and the novella Things Unseen and Deadly from the Irregulars anthology. Visit Ginn’s website.
Under a prickly, cynical surface Lou Harper is an incorrigible romantic. Her love affair with the written word started at a tender age, and she is currently embroiled in a ruinous romance with adjectives. In her free time Lou stalks deviant words and feral narratives. Lou’s favorite animal is the hedgehog. She likes nature, books, movies, photography, and good food. She has a temper and mood swings. Lou has misspent most of her life in parts of Europe and the US, but is now firmly settled in Los Angeles and worships the sun. However, she thinks the ocean smells funny. Lou is a loner, a misfit, and a happy drunk. Visit Lou’s website.
Laylah Hunter is a third-gendered butch queer who writes true stories about imaginary people in worlds that never were. Most of xir work deals with queer characters, erotic themes, and the search for happy endings in unfavorable circumstances. Hunter’s mild-mannered alter ego lives in Seattle, at the mercy of the requisite cats and cultivating the requisite caffeine habit, and dreams of a day when telling stories will pay all the bills. Xir published fiction includes the novel Gabriel’s City and several short stories. Visit Laylah’s website.
How it all started – When Christine Svendsen’s first book was turned away by publishers, she launched her own publishing company. Now, six years later, she’s has a house full of award-winning lesbian authors and her own award-winning books published under the pseudonym Isabella via Sapphire Books.
Writing as Isabella – Isabella’s first novel, Always Faithful, won a Golden Crown Literary Society Award in the traditional contemporary romance category. She was also a finalist in the International Book Awards, and she received an honorable mention in the 2010 and 2012, Rainbow Awards. She’s written 11 novels and is working on her 12th, Razor’s Edge. She has written several short stories and just finished her next novel, Aphrodite’s Handmaiden, to be released this year.
You can find out more about Isabella at – www.isabella.rocks
Amanda Jean is an editor, podcast host, and writer. She grew up devouring het romance novels and shifted to LGBT romance as a teen when her thirsty queer nature revealed itself. Amanda has worked with Less Than Three Press, Bella Books, NineStar Press, and serves as Alternating Current’s LGBT Director. She’s one of the co-editors of Magic & Mayhem, a charity anthology to benefit GRNW. When she’s not wrangling manuscripts, writing about the video game industry, or co-hosting the queer romance podcast The Hopeless Romantic with Austin Chant, you can find her watching documentaries, reading too many books on true crime, and caring too much about fictional characters. You can find Amanda on Twitter at @amandahjean.
Nicole Kimberling lives in Bellingham, Washington with her partner, Dawn Kimberling, two bad cats and countless mosquitos. She is the author of various speculative fiction titles as well as a contemporary romantic mystery series set in the Pacific Northwest. Her first novel, Turnskin, won the Lambda Literary Award for Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror. She is also the editor of Blind Eye Books. Visit Nicole’s website.
Author Morticia Knight spends most of her nights writing about men loving men forever after. If there happen to be some friendly bondage or floggings involved, she doesn’t begrudge her characters whatever their filthy little hearts’ desire. Even though she’s been crafting her naughty tales for more years than she’d like to share – her adventures as a published author began in 2011. Once upon a time she was the lead singer in an indie rock band that toured the West Coast and charted on U.S. college radio. She currently resides on the northern Oregon coast and when she’s not fantasizing about hot men she takes walks along the ocean and annoys the local Karaoke bar patrons. Of her many books, three have bisexual main characters, including Set Ablaze (Uniform Encounters 1), Strip Search (Sin City Uniforms 7), and Rockin’ the Alternative/Rockin’ It Forever. Visit Morticia’s website
Christopher Hawthorne Moss is a historical novelist whose mission in life is to write and encourage the writing of plausible and positive novels that depict the lives of GLBTQ people and how they lived and loved no matter the hostility of the times they lived in, because, as he quips, “We were here and we were queer!” He lives in the Seattle area with his longtime, 34 years, companion/husband and their two doted upon cats. You can find his books and stories published through Dreamspinner Press and Harmony Ink Press as well as with his own imprint, Shield-wall Books. You can find his web site at http://authorchristophermoss.blogspot.com/.
M.J. O’Shea has been writing romance since algebra class in sixth grade (when most of her stories starred her and Leonardo DiCaprio). When she’s not writing, she loves listening to nearly all types of music, painting, reading great authors, and on those elusive sunny days in the Pacific Northwest, she loves driving on the freeway with her windows rolled down and her stereo on high. She can be contacted at email@example.com. Visit M.J.’s website.
EE Ottoman grew up surrounded by the farmlands and forests of upstate New York. They started writing as soon as they learned how and have yet to stop. Ottoman attended Earlham College and graduated with a degree in history, before going on to receive a graduate degree in history as well. These days they divide their time between history, writing and book preservation.
Ottoman is also a disabled, queer, trans man whose pronouns are: they/them/their or he/him/his. Mostly though they are a person who is passionate about history, stories and the spaces between the two. Their work includes Documenting Light, the Mechanical Universe series, and Selume Proferre.
J.K. Pendragon is a Canadian author with a love of all things romantic and fantastical. As a bisexual and genderqueer person, they are dedicated to writing stories with adventures and happy endings for characters all across the rainbow spectrum. J currently resides in British Columbia with their boyfriend and cat, where they enjoy the traditional writerly pursuits of drinking tea in bed and avoiding contact with other humans. They are always happy to communicate through the internet though, and you can contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet them at @JKPendragon. Author of To Summon Nightmares, Witch Cat and Cobb, and Double Take in the Geek Out Anthology. You can find J.K. at their blog and website jkpendragon.com.
Alex Powell is an avid writer and reader of sci-fi and fantasy, but on occasion branches into other genres to keep things interesting. Alex is a genderqueer writer from the wilds of northern Canada who loves exploring other peoples and cultures. Alex is a recent graduate of UNBC with a BA in English, and as a result has an unhealthy obsession with Victorian Gothic literature. Alex has been writing from an early age, but is happy to keep learning to improve on their writing skills. Feedback and comments as well as any questions are appreciated! You can reach Alex at email@example.com or at their website alexpowellauthor.com. Alex’s work includes Rangers over Regulus and All the King’s Men.
Angela wrote and published her first short story—We Need to Talk—on a lark with no intention of writing more. Reader demand expanded that first short into a four-part series (the Laura and Mel series), and Angela—AKA A.K. Rose—has now also published two full-length F/F romance novels: Learning to Love Again, and Learning to Love Again 2.
Immediately after publishing, Learning to Love Again spent about a month in the top 5 slots in the genre on Amazon, peaking at #2, just behind The Price of Salt, a fact that was both surprising and humbling for an unknown Indie author.
Angela lives in the Seattle area with her 16-year-old, one-eyed cat, Bugsy, and partner Theresa, and takes advantage of the natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest as often as possible through hiking, cycling, skiing, and general outdoor merriment. She blogs at: akrosewrites.wordpress.com.
E.J. Russell — certified geek, mother of three, recovering actor — lives in rural Oregon with her husband. She enjoys visits from her wonderful adult children, and indulges in good books, red wine, and the occasional hyperbole. Her books include “Sun, Moon, and Stars” (part of the GRNW Magic & Mayhem anthology), Stumptown Spirits, and Northern Light, along with the forthcoming Wolf’s Clothing (October 2016, Riptide) and Clickbait (November 2016, Riptide). You can find E.J. at http://ejrussell.com.
Andrea Speed was born looking for trouble in some hot month without an R in it. She’s the author of the Infected series for Dreamspinner Press, the Josh of the Damned series for Riptide Publishing, and has a bunch of non-series stuff as well. She makes up stuff, just to be an ass. In her spare time, she arms lemurs in preparation for the upcoming war against the Mole Men. Viva la revolution! Visit Andrea’s website.
Read our GRNW interview with Andrea on GoodReads.
Karelia Stetz-Waters is an English professor by day and writer by night (and early morning). She has a BA from Smith College in Comparative Literature and an MA in English from the University of Oregon. Other formative experiences include a childhood spent roaming the Oregon woods and several years spent exploring Portland as a broke 20-something. She lives with her wife, Fay, her puppy, Wila Cather, and her cat Cyrus the Disemboweler. She teaches at a rural community college which provides ample inspiration for writing, as the college attracts all walks of life, from Sudanese refugees to fresh-out-of-the-closet drag queens. Her interests include large snakes, conjoined twins, corn mazes, lesbians, popular science books on neurology, and any roadside attraction that purports to have the world’s largest ball of twine.
Karelia has written five novels: The Admirer, The Purveyor, Forgive Me If I’ve Told You This Before, Something True, and For Good. She has been a Lambda finalist and has the honor of being the first F/F romance writer picked up by the mainstream Forever Yours imprint at Grand Central Publishing. More at kareliastetzwaters.com
Lou Sylvre loves romance with all its ups and downs, and likes to conjure it into books. The sweethearts on her pages are men who end up loving each other—and usually saving each other from unspeakable danger. It’s all pretty crazy and very, very sexy. How cool is that? She blogs at http://www.sylvre.rainbow-gate.com, is @sylvre on Twitter, and loves to hear from readers on facebook or at firstname.lastname@example.org. As if you’d want to know more, she’ll happily tell you that she is a proudly bisexual woman, a mother, grandmother, lover of languages, and cat-herder. She works closely with lead cat and writing assistant, the (male) Queen of Budapest, Boudreau St. Clair.
Lou is the creator of the popular Vasquez and James series of M/M romantic suspense, published by Dreamspinner Press: Loving Luki Vasquez, Delsyn’s Blues, Finding Jackie, Saving Sonny James, Yes (A Novella. Proceeds go to Fred Hutchison Cancer Research Center) also included in a volume with the final series book Because of Jade (Rainbow Awards Finalist 2014). A spinoff series, Vasquez Security—The Next Generation, began with the March 2015 publication of A Shot of J&B, and will continue with Blackmail and Roses and Jesse’s Way in 2017.
Tracy serves on the board of the Seattle writing nonprofit Old Growth Northwest, and as a volunteer, leads the organization’s Gay Romance Northwest initiative, which includes the Gay Romance Northwest Meet-Up (GRNW). Launched in 2013, GRNW is the first conference that focuses on LGBTQ romance fiction in the Pacific Northwest. Tracy’s day job is at FSG, a nonprofit consulting firm focusing on social change issues. As a person with disabilities (low vision) and queer (asexual), Tracy loves to explore how spreading awareness of stories can empower and strengthen communities. In her spare time, she loves reading queer genre fiction, drawing cartoony monsters, singing karaoke, sending Jeff Bezo irritating letters, talking incessantly about community action and romance fiction, and avoiding her cat when he gets “bite-y”.
Yolanda Wallace is not a professional writer, but she plays one in her spare time. Her love of travel and adventure has helped her pen the globe-spanning novels In Medias Res, Rum Spring, Lucky Loser, Murphy’s Law, Love’s Bounty, Break Point, the Lambda Award-winning Month of Sundays, and 24/7, as well as Date with Destiny, Charm City, and 21 Questions written as Mason Dixon. Her short stories have appeared in multiple anthologies including Romantic Interludes 2: Secrets and Women of the Dark Streets. She and her partner live in beautiful coastal Georgia, where they are parents to two children of the four-legged variety. Yolanda can be reached at email@example.com.
Sheri Lewis Wohl
Sheri Lewis Wohl grew up in Northeast Washington State surrounded by mountains, pine trees, rivers, and lakes. Though she always thought she’d move away to somewhere big and bold, she never did, and is noow happy to write surrounded by the beauty of nature. When not working her day job in federal finance or writing her stories of vampires, werewolves, and psychics, she participates in local triathlons and is a member of a K9 search and rescue team. Keeping true to her love of the paranormal, Sheri has also appeared as a zombie in the SyFy series, Z Nation.