Denise M. Baran-Unland is the author of the gothic vampire BryonySeries, cofounder of WriteOn Joliet, and features editor at The Herald-News. She is a former freelance writer and features writing teacher at a homeschool cooperative and current instructor for a small monthly writer’s workshop. She has six children, many grandchildren, and four cats. Visit her at bryonyseries.com.
Former ironworker Ralph Carey was born in Joliet and raised by a single mother. After 40 years of addiction and a criminal lifestyle, including a stints in both federal and state prison, he has turned his life around and authored Life's Wisdom: Overcoming Addiction. When not writing he is making the most of every day, spending time with his children and grandchildren, and expanding upon his writing.
From 1982-1990, Sue Merrell worked at the Joliet Herald-News under her married name, Sue Wallace. After working for the Grand Rapids Press for almost 20 years, she retired in 2009 to write novels. She has written a memoir, Laughing for a Living, and a mystery series inspired by her years working in Joliet. She has one grown son. Visit her at suemerrellbooks.com.
Allison Rios is the author of the Healer Series, as well as co-author of a book on several caregiver’s journeys with brain cancer. In between a full-time job, chauffeuring kids and shopping for high heels, she spends her free time creating new worlds with her imagination – a hobby she likes to share with her two children. She is currently working on the next book in the Healer series. Visit her at facebook.com/HealersAndGrims.