Printers Row Lit Fest Lineup
Megan Abbott is the award-winning author of nine novels, including You Will Know Me. She received her Ph.D. in English and American literature from New York University. Megan is currently a staff writer on HBO's forthcoming show, The Deuce. She lives in New York City.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is the NBA’s all-time leading scorer and a 6x NBA champion. As a NY Times best-selling author who has a national platform as a regular contributing columnist and nationally recognized speaker where he shares his thoughts on the most socially relevant and politically controversial topics facing our nation.
Luvvie Ajayi is an award-winning writer, pop culture critic, and author of the New York Times Bestselling book I'M JUDGING YOU. She is also a digital strategist, noted speaker and Executive Director of The Red Pump Project, a national HIV/AIDS organization.
Carolyn Alessio was a finalist for the PEN/Bellwether Prize in socially engaged fiction. Her work has appeared in America, Brain, Child, The Pushcart Prize and elsewhere.
Quraysh Ali Lansana is the author or editor of more than twenty books. He is a faculty member at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Lansana served as Director of the Gwendolyn Brooks Center for Black Literature and Creative Writing at Chicago State University from 2002 to 2011.
Jenny Allen is the author of WOULD EVERYBODY PLEASE STOP? She lives on Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts
Born in Damascus, Syria in 1968 and now living in Pittsburgh, Osama Alomar is the author of three collections of short stories and a volume of poetry. He is a regular contributor to various newspapers and journals within the Arab world.
Deb Aronson is the author of the non-fiction, middle grade book, Alexandra the Great: The Story of the Record-Breaking Filly Who Ruled the Racetrack. She has been a freelance writer for more than 20 years. This is her first book for children.
Ash is Vice President of the Mystery Writers of America Midwest Chapter. A produced screenwriter (STARGAZE SG-1), her short story "Freedom Day" will appear in the upcoming anthology EMPOWER: MIND OVER MATTER. She is working on her first novel. This is her second year moderating MWA-MW's Flash Fiction contest.
Bethany Ball was born and raised in Detroit and has lived in Santa Fe, New Jersey, Miami, and Israel. She now lives in New York with her family. Her debut novel, WHAT TO DO ABOUT THE SOLOMONS, was recently published by Atlantic Monthly Press.
Most people know Rick Bayless from winning the title of Bravo’s Top Chef Masters, beating out the French and Italian with his authentic Mexican cuisine. His highly rated Public Television Series, Mexico–One Plate at a Time, has wrapped its 11th season and is broadcast coast to coast. In 2012, Rick was nominated for a Daytime Emmy for Best Culinary Host. Rick has nine cookbooks. His second book, Mexican Kitchen, won the Julia Child IACP cookbook of the year award in 1996, and his fourth book, Mexico–One Plate at a Time won James Beard Best International Cookbook of the Year award in 2001. Fiesta at Rick’s spent a number of weeks on the New York Times best seller list. Rick’s side by side award-winning restaurants are in Chicago. The casual Frontera Grill was founded in 1987 and received the James Beard Foundation’s highest award, Outstanding Restaurant, in 2007. The 4-star Toplobampo served its first meals in 1991. And the wildly popular, LEED GOLD-certified, fast-casual Xoco has been around since 2009, serving wood-oven tortas, steaming caldos, golden churros and bean-to-cup Mexican hot chocolate. Rick’s quick-service Tortas Frontera have changed the face of food service at O’Hare International Airport, while Frontera Fresco has brought Frontera flavors to several Macy’s stores and Northwestern University. His award-winning Frontera line of salsas, cooking sauces and organic chips can be found coast to coast. In 2016, he opened two new restaurants in Chicago’s bustling West Loop neighborhood — the Baja-inspired, wood-fired Leña Brava and the adjacent Cervecería Cruz Blanca, a craft brewery and Oaxacan-style taquería. Both have earned critical acclaim. Also in 2016, he opened Frontera Cocina in Disney Springs. Rick and his staff established the Frontera Farmer Foundation in 2003 to support small Midwestern farms. Each year, grants are awarded to farmers for capital improvements to their family farms, encouraging greater production and profitability. To date, the Foundation has awarded nearly 200 grants totaling nearly $2 million. In 2007, Bayless and his team launched the Frontera Scholarship, a full tuition scholarship that sends a Mexican-American Chicago Public School student to Kendall College to study culinary arts. In 2007 Rick was awarded the Humanitarian of the Year by the International Association of Culinary Professionals for his many philanthropic endeavors. Rick has received a great number of James Beard Award nominations in many categories, and he has won seven: Midwest Chef of the Year, National Chef of the Year, Humanitarian of the Year, Who’s Who of American Food and Drink, Best Podcast, plus two for his cookbooks. The Government of Mexico has bestowed on Rick the Mexican Order of the Aztec Eagle–the highest decoration bestowed on foreigners whose work has benefitted Mexico and its people. Recently, Rick finished up a sold-out 5-week run on stage at Lookingglass Theatre, where he created Cascabel–offering theater goers the story of a meal, told through flavor, memory, song, dance and amazing physical feats.
Sidney Blumenthal is the former assistant and senior adviser to President Bill Clinton, and senior adviser to Hillary Clinton. A former journalist, he has authored several books, including Wrestling with His Angel, part of multi-volume biography on the Political Life of Lincoln. Originally from Illinois, he lives in DC.
Tricia Bobeda is the co-host of WBEZ's Nerdette Podcast and Senior Editor of Digital.
John R. Bohrer is the author of "The Revolution of Robert Kennedy: From Power to Protest After JFK." He is a historian, journalist, and television news producer for MSNBC. His writing can be found in New York Magazine, The New Republic, BuzzFeed, Esquire, Politico, & others.
Chris Borrelli is a features writer at the Chicago Tribune and writes about toast and hand dryers.
Mark Bowden is the author of twelve books, including Hue 1968 and the #1 New York Times bestseller Black Hawk Down, a finalist for the National Book Award. Bowden reported at the Philadelphia Inquirer for twenty years and now writes for the Atlantic, Vanity Fair, and other magazines.
Lolly Bowean is a 2017 Nieman Fellow at Harvard University and a Chicago Tribune reporter. She is a winner of the 2016 Studs Terkel Award for storytelling. At the Tribune, she writes about Chicago's unique African-American community, housing, youth culture, among other topics.
ELIZABETH BOYLE has always loved romance. Since her first book was published, she’s seen her romances become New York Times and USA Today bestsellers and win the RWA RITA Award and the Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice awards. She resides in Seattle.
Wendy Brant has a degree in journalism from Northwestern University and completed the Publishing Institute program at the University of Denver. ZENN DIAGRAM is her debut young adult novel. She is thrilled to participate in this year's Printers Row Lit Fest. Learn more about her at: wendybrant.net
Ninety-five-year-old Wanda Bridgeforth attended Chicago’s Due Sable High School with Nat King Cole and Dinah Washington. She self-published her memoir On the Move in 2009, and stories she’s written for the memoir-writing class she attends at the Chicago Cultural Center are featured in the new book Writing Out loud.
Kim Brooks is the author of The Lightkeepers. Brooks is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, where she was a Teaching-Writing Fellow. Her fiction has appeared in Glimmer Train, One Story, The Missouri Review, and other journals, and her essays have appeared in Salon, Buzzfeed, and New York Magazine.
Rosellen Brown, who teaches at the School of the Art Institute, has published five novels, including Civil Wars, Before and After and Half a Heart, three books of poetry and a collection of stories, Street Games. Her stories have appeared often in O. Henry, Best American Stories and Pushcart Prizes.
Jerry Buting is the author of ILLUSION OF JUSTICE about his work on the Steven Avery murder trial, made famous by the Netflix documentary series "Making a Murderer" He lectures worldwide and is frequently sought by national TV and radio show hosts for his legal expertise.
Nickolas Butler was born in Allentown, Pennsylvania, raised in Eau Claire, WI. A graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the Iowa Writer's Workshop, and the author of the internationally bestselling and award-winning novel, Shotgun Lovesongs and the acclaimed short story collection, Beneath the Bonfire. He lives in Wisconsin.
Susanna Calkins is the author of the award-winning Lucy Campion historical mysteries published by Minotaur (St. Martin’s). A historian by training, Susanna works at Northwestern University where she directs teaching initiatives for faculty. Born and raised in Philadelphia, she lives outside Chicago now, with her husband and two sons.
David Callahan is the author of THE GIVERS: Wealth, Power, and Philanthropy in a New Gilded Age. He is founder and editor of the media site Inside Philanthropy, and co-founder of the national think tank Demos.
Bears writer for the Chicago Tribune
Mark Caro co-authored "Take It to the Bridge: Unlocking the Great Songs Inside You" and wrote the award-winning "The Foie Gras Wars." He's covered culture for the Chicago Tribune, The New York Times and others, and he hosts the "Is It Still Funny?" film series at the Music Box Theatre.
Amy Carr is the Associate Managing Editor/Features for the Chicago Tribune, overseeing entertainment, food & dining, lifestyles, editorial events and the production of Tribune books and e-books. Prior to joining the Tribune, Carr served as the Executive Editor for Time Out Chicago magazine and Editor-in-chief of Time Out Chicago Kids.
Co-owner/brewer/bread baker/culinary director of the first ever Michelin Starred Brewpub in the world. Former bread baker for Alinea Restaurant. Former brewer at Half Acre Brewery. A free spirited non-conformist gypsy Dead-Head living and loving in 3/4 time.
Paula Carter is the author of the forthcoming essay collection No Relation (Black Lawrence Press, November 2017). Her work has appeared in Kenyon Review, The Southern Review, TriQuarterly, and Prairie Schooner. Based in Chicago, she is a part of the storytelling scene and is a company member with 2nd Story.
Brian Cassella has been a staff photojournalist at the Chicago Tribune since 2009. He's covered the Cubs World Series, three Stanley Cup Finals and two Olympic Games. He also writes "The Next Day" photo column on Chicago neighborhoods living around gun violence.
JoBe Cerny is a writer, actor, director and producer. Actors Audio is his publishing company. He directed The Word of Promise Bible on CD. He likes writing mysteries for a new Millenium of Chicago Crimes.
Crystal Cestari lives just outside Chicago. Her YA debut novel, The Best Kind of Magic, follows a magical matchmaker who can see people's soulmates. The sequel, The Sweetest Kind of Fate, arrives Feb 2018. Follow on Twitter and Instagram @crystalcestari.
826CHI is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting students ages 6 to 18 with their creative and expository writing skills, and to helping teachers inspire their students to write.
CHIRP is a volunteer-driven community radio station that focuses on independent music, arts, and culture. The station is live and local every day of the year from 6am-midnight from studios in Chicago’s North Center neighborhood. You can listen online at chirpradio.org.
Louisa Chu is a Chicago Tribune Food & Dining reporter and Chewing podcast co-host, previously a WBEZ contributor and Gourmet correspondent, perhaps best known as an Anthony Bourdain fixer and Iron Chef America judge, who received a James Beard scholarship then trained at the restaurants El Bulli, Alinea, and more.
Jodi Cohen is an investigative reporter with the Chicago Tribune and was the Tribune's higher education reporter for a decade. In 2010, she was named the Illinois Journalist of the Year, and her work has been honored by state and national organizations.
International Award Winning Children's Author and Illustrator DJ Corchin is from Chicago, IL. Known for his witty delivery and socially conscious messages, his most successful titles include The I Feel... Children's Book Series (listed on Autism Speaks Resource Library), A Thousand NO's, and Mystical Rules For My Magical Daughter.
Kevin Coval is a poet and community builder. He is the artistic director of Young Chicago Authors, founder of Louder Than A Bomb,and professor at the University of Illinois-Chicago. His latest book A People's History of Chicago dropped March 4th 2017 on Haymarket Books
DANA CREE is the Executive pastry chef of The Publican restaurants in Chicago and was a two-time finalist for the James Beard Award for Best Pastry Chef for her work at the critically acclaimed Blackbird. Dana's new cookbook, Hello, My Name Is Ice Cream, was released 3/28/17 from Clarkson Potter.
Jane Dailey teaches American history at the University of Chicago. She is the author of Before Jim Crow: The Politics of Race in Postemancipation Virginia, Jumping' Jim Crow: Southern Politics from Civil War to Civil Rights, and Building the Republic: A Narrative History of the United States Since 1877.
Bill Daley is a Chicago Tribune food writer. He covers chefs and food personalities, cooking techniques and trends. He is active in social media, notably Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram.
Amy Danzer manages several master’s programs at Northwestern University, including the MA/MFA in creative writing program. She also directs NU’s Summer Writers’ Conference. On the side, she writes book reviews and interviews authors for Newcity.
Heath Fogg Davis's book Beyond Trans: Does Gender Matter? (NYU Press) questions our need for gender policies. A professor of antidiscrimination law and policy at Temple University, Davis also consults with businesses, schools, and organizations nationwide to help them imagine, develop and implement trans-inclusive policies. heathfoggdavis.com @heathfoggdavis
Kevin Davis is a Chicago-based journalist and author of The Brain Defense and Defending the Damned. His writing has appeared in USA Today, The Chicago Tribune, The Utne Reader, and The Rumpus; he is a former staff reporter for the Sun-Sentinel and an editor at the ABA Journal.
Dawson has been singing and writing songs for over 35 years, most prominently as the leader of the band, Dolly Varden. Take It To the Bridge: Unlocking the Great Songs Inside You, co-written with Mark Caro, is based on Steve's songwriting classes at Chicago's Old Town School of Folk Music.
Jennifer Day is the books editor for the Chicago Tribune. She joined the newspaper in 2012 to launch Printers Row Journal, a Sunday literary review. She has worked as a journalist for nearly 20 years.
Don De Grazia is the author of the critically acclaimed novel, American Skin. His work has appeared in the Chicago Tribune, TriQuarterly, The Outlaw Bible of American Literature, other publications. He is a screenwriter in the Writers Guild of America and faculty in the Columbia College Chicago Creative Writing Department.
MARY V. DEARBORN received a doctorate in English and Comparative Literature from Columbia University, where she was a Mellon Fellow in the Humanities.
Mayda Del Valle is a proud native of Chicago’s South Side. She is the author of The University of Hip Hop: Poems. Del Valle has appeared on Russell Simmons's Def Poetry Jam on HBO and was a original cast member of the Tony Award–winning Def Poetry Jam on Broadway.
Rachel DeWoskin is the author of the novels Blind; Big Girl Small; and Repeat After Me. Her memoir Foreign Babes in Beijing is being developed as a tv series at BBC America. She has published work in The New Yorker, Vanity Fair, and Ploughshares. She teaches at University of Chicago.
Jason Diamond is the author of the memoir "Searching for John Hughes." He's the Cultire & Sports Editor at Rolling Stone, founder of Vol. 1 Brooklyn, and has been published by the New York Times, Paris Review, Esquire, Harper's Bazaar, New Republic, Pitchfork, and many other publications.
Amy Dickinson writes the syndicated "Ask Amy" advice column, which replaced the Ann Landers column in 2003. "Ask Amy" appears in more than 150 newspapers in North America. She currently lives in Freeville, NY and is the author of STRANGERS TEND TO TELL ME THINGS.
Cory Doctorow is a science fiction author, activist, journalist and blogger — the co-editor of Boing Boing (boingboing.net) and the author of many books, including the upcoming WALKAWAY (April 2017) and HOMELAND, the award-winning, best-selling sequel to the 2008 YA novel LITTLE BROTHER.
Bruce Dold is the Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of the Chicago Tribune. He has served at the Tribune as a reporter, columnist and editorial page editor, and won the 1994 Pulitzer Prize for editorial writing.
Rita Dove is a former U.S. poet laureate, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the Heinz Award, and a musician. She lives in Charlottesville, where she is Commonwealth Professor of English at the University of Virginia. Her latest book is COLLECTED POEMS: 1974-2004.
Michael Eric Dyson is one of America’s premier public intellectuals, a Professor of Sociology at Georgetown University, an ordained minister, and contributing opinion writer for The New York Times. He is the author of the New York Times Best Seller TEARS WE CANNOT STOP: A Sermon to White America.
Jill Eisenstadt is the author of the novels Swell, From Rockaway and Kiss Out. Her writing has appeared in the New York Times, Vogue, Elle, the Boston Review, New York Magazine, and BOMB. She lives in Brooklyn.
Omar El Akkad is an award-winning journalist and author. He reported from the war in Afghanistan, the military trials at Guantànamo Bay, the Arab Spring revolution in Egypt and more. He is a recipient of Canada's National Newspaper Award and the Goff Penny Memorial Prize for Young Canadian Journalists.
Dubbed a “Renaissance Man” by the New York Post, Val Emmich is a writer, singer-songwriter, and actor. Emmich lives in Jersey City, New Jersey, with his wife and their two children. The Reminders is his first novel.
Monica Eng is a veteran Chicago journalist who now reports at WBEZ, Chicago Public Radio. She also co-hosts the Chewing Podcast about food and health.
Michelle Falkoff is the author of PLAYLIST FOR THE DEAD (an NPR Great Read of 2015) and PUSHING PERFECT (2016), with more to come in 2018 and beyond.
Emil Ferris grew up Chicago during the turbulent 1960s, where she still lives, and is consequently a devotee of all things monstrous and horrific. She has an MFA in Creative Writing from The School of the Art Institute.
Charles Finch is a novelist and critic, whose books include "The Inheritance" and "The Last Enchantments." He regularly writes about books for the New York Times, Chicago Tribune, and other publications.
NPR commentator Beth Finke is an award-winning author, teacher, journalist and a recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts grant. She also happens to be blind. Beth leads memoir-writing classes for older adults for the City of Chicago and Lincoln Park Village.
Jennifer Finney Boylan is the critically acclaimed author of fifteen books. The inaugural Anna Quindlen Writer-in-Residence at Columbia University's Barnard College and special advisor to the president of Colby College, she also serves on the national board of GLAAD and on the board of trustees of the Kinsey Institute.
Gillian Flynn is the #1 bestselling author of GONE GIRL, DARK PLACES and SHARP OBJECTS, which she is currently turning into a series for HBO. Other projects include a female-driven heist film co-written with Oscar winner Steve McQueen, set and shot in Chicago.
Gina Frangello is the author of four books, including Every Kind of Wanting and A Life in Men, which was a book club selection for NYLON magazine, The Rumpus, and The Nervous Breakdown. She is the founder of Other Voices Books, has served as the Sunday editor for The Rumpus.
Senator Franken has represented Minnesota in the United States Senate since 2009. Before entering politics, he was an award-winning comedy writer, author and radio show host. He's been married for 41 years-many of them happy. Senator Franken graduated from Harvard and received his doctorate in megalomania studies from Trump University.
Amanda Freitag is the co-star of Food Network’s hit series, Chopped. Her first cookbook, The Chef Next Door: A Pro Chefs Recipes for Fun, Fearless Home Cooking, was released in 2015. When she is not in the kitchen, Amanda enjoys traveling the world and collecting restaurant menus.
Jamie Freveletti is an internationally bestselling and award winning author of four of her own novels, two novels for the Estate of Robert Ludlum's Covert One series, and four short stories. She contributed to the non-fiction collection: Anatomy of Innocence: Testimonies of the Wrongfully Convicted (2017). She lives in Chicago.
Mayte Garcia is an internationally acclaimed dancer, actress, and choreographer. Her book The Most Beautiful: My Life with Prince was an instant New York Times bestseller. She has appeared in numerous films and starred in the VH1 reality series "Hollywood Exes." She lives in Los Angeles with her young daughter.
David J. Garrow is Professor of Law and History and Distinguished Faculty Scholar at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. He is the author of four books, including Bearing the Cross: Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, which won the Pulitzer Prize for biography.
Nancy Gee's journey into writing started not long after an unknown animal got into her sock drawer, only to be discovered by the family cat. Her grandsons loved having her tell and retell that story, and challenged her to write 'The Secret Drawer' and the Secret Book Series.
Dr. Gilbert is a Professor of Surgery at the University of Chicago, Director of the Microbiome Institute, Associate Director of the Institute of Genomic and Systems Biology, Research Associate at the Field Museum of Natural History, &Senior Scientist at the Marine Biological Laboratory. He earned his Ph.D. from Nottingham University.
Dahleen Glanton is a columnist for the Chicago Tribune. Since coming to the Tribune from the Los Angeles Times in 1989, she has been a national correspondent based in Atlanta and an associate metro editor in Chicago. Dahleen was named a finalist for the 2017 Pulitzer Prize in commentary.
Nicole Gonzalez Van Cleve is a Professor at Temple University and a NAACP Image Award Nominee for her book, "Crook County." She has provided legal commentary for MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show, NBC News, CNN, NPR, The Chicago Tribune and The New York Times.
Allegra Goodman’s novels include The Chalk Artist, The Cookbook Collector and Intuition. Her fiction has appeared in The New Yorker and Best American Short Stories. She is a winner of the Whiting Writer’s Award and a fellowship at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study.
Keir Graff is the author of two middle-grade novels, including the The Matchstick Castle, published in January by Putnam Young Readers and Listening Library. Since 2011, he has been cohost of Publishing Cocktails, an occasional literary gathering in Chicago. By day, he is the executive editor of Booklist.
Joe Gray is the Food & Dining Editor at the Chicago Tribune. He has been a journalist for more than 30 years and a passionate cook for as long. That cooking avocation became his vocation when he moved to food journalism 14 years ago.
Mark Guarino is a journalist and playwright. His work has appeared in The Washington Post, The Christian Science Monitor, The Guardian, among other outlets. He is working on his first book for the University of Chicago Press. HIs MFA is from Bennington College and he teaches writing at UIC.
I'm the author of giggling-inducing picture books and have a proclivity for turning storytimes into costume-wearing, craft-making, game-playing, dance parties. I've visited schools, libraries, and bookstores across the Midwest for audiences of 20-200+, including the Sheboygan Children's Book Festival. BA in English, MAT in Language Arts, and Zumba Fitness instructor.
Rachel Hall is the author of Heirlooms (BkMk Press), selected by Marge Piercy for the G.S. Sharat Chandra book prize. Her short stories and essays have appeared in a number of journals and anthologies. She is Professor of English at the SUNY-Geneseo. Follow her at www.rachelhall.org or@Rach_H_writer
Jane Hamilton is the bestselling author of The Excellent Lombards, A Map of the World, and The Book of Ruth, for which she won the PEN/Ernest Hemingway Foundation Award for best first novel. For more information about the author, visit her website at http://www.janehamiltonbooks.com.
Steve Hamilton is the New York Times-bestselling and two-time Edgar Award-winning author of the Alex McKnight series, two standalone novels, A Cold Day in Paradise and The Lock Artist, and the Nick Mason series, most recently EXIT STRATEGY. To learn more, please visit www.authorstevehamilton.com and follow him on Twitter @AuthorSteve.
USA Today and New York Times bestselling author Lorraine Heath began her career writing training manuals and computer code, but something was always missing. When she read a romance novel, she quickly realized what her writing lacked: rebels, scoundrels, and rogues. She's been writing about them ever since.
David Heinzmann is a Chicago Tribune reporter who covered the police beat for many years and now works on the paper’s political investigations team. He is the author of two Chicago-themed mystery novels, “A Word to the Wise” and “Throwaway Girl”.
Aleksandar Hemon is the author of "The Lazarus Project", a finalist for the 2008 National Book Award and the NBCC Award. He was the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and a MacArthur Foundation “genius grant”. His new book is "The Making of Zombie Wars". He lives in Chicago.
Joseph Hernandez is a food and drink reporter for the Chicago Tribune. A certified wine geek via the Wine & Spirit Education Trust, he has previously written for Wine Enthusiast, Conde Nast Traveler and Afar, among others.
Chicago author Esther Hershenhorn writes award-winning picture books and middle-grade fiction, teaches Writing for Children classes at the Newberry Library and University of Chicago’s Writer’s Studio and coaches children’s book writers of all ages to help them tell their stories. Her latest book is TXNTG MAMA TXTNG BABY.
Jon has been a Steppenwolf ensemble member since 2007 and stars in the current production of Pass Over. Previous Steppenwolf credits include Constellations, Head of Passes, Superior Donuts (also Broadway; Outer Critic’s Circle Award; Tony nomination). He stars in the CBS series, Elementary. BFA: Univ. of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.
Margaret Holt is standards editor of the Chicago Tribune. She has a particular interest in urban issues and diversity of coverage. A member of the Native American Journalists Association, Holt is a Tuscarora Nation member and participates in journalism diversity groups.
Stephen Hunter is the author of twenty novels and the retired chief film critic for The Washington Post, where he won the 2003 Pulitzer Prize for Distinguished Criticism. His novel Point of Impact was adapted for film and TV as Shooter. His newest novel G-MAN is set in Chicago in 1934. Hunter lives in Baltimore, Maryland.
A successful 11-years in the NFL is a small part of Israel Idonije's life story. Izzy is a creator at heart and strives to be a positive influence. He wrote the DreamKidz Adventures series as a way to infuse young readers with self-worth and to promote a love of reading.
Mr. Scott from Twisticity.com is Children's singer turned balloon artist turned giant bubble wizard. He brings nearly 30 years of experience educating and entertaining children to his Amazing Giant Bubble Show which you won't want to miss!
Samantha Irby writes a blog called “bitches gotta eat.”
ANGELA JACKSON is the author of numerous collections of poetry, Roads, Where There Are No Roads: A Novel, and her poetry collection, It Seems Like a Mighty Long Time, nominated for a Hurston/Wright Legacy Award. Her novel Where I Must Go won the American Book Award.
Sandra Jackson-Opoku authored the American Library Association Black Caucus award-winning The River Where Blood is Born. Hot Johnny (and the Women Whom Loved Him) was an Essence Magazine Hardcover Fiction Bestseller. With poet Quraysh Ali Lansana she coedited the anthology, Revise the Psalm: Work Celebrating the Writing of Gwendolyn Brooks.
Mark Jacob, the Chicago Tribune's metro editor, is the co-author of books on photography, baseball, Chicago history, and the American Revolution. He created the Tribune's popular "10 Things You Might Not Know" trivia feature. Jacob co-wrote "Treacherous Beauty," the first biography of Peggy Shippen, Benedict Arnold's wife and co-conspirator.
Author/illustrator, Brittany R. Jacobs, made her splash into the children's book world with The Kraken's Rules For Making Friends (October 2016). She's got several more picture books in the works, as well as a reference book for children's librarians (Transforming Your Library Into An Adventure Playground, ABC-CLIO 2017). BRJacobsArt.com @BRJacobsArt
Poet Tyehimba Jess is author of Leadbelly and Olio. Olio won the 2017 Pulitzer Prize, the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award, The Midland Society Author’s Award, and an Outstanding Contribution to Publishing Citation from the Black Caucus of the American Library Association. Leadbelly was a winner of the 2004 National Poetry Series.
Paulette Jiles is a novelist, poet, and memoirist. She is the author of Cousins, a memoir, and the novels Enemy Women, Stormy Weather, The Color of Lightning, Lighthouse Island, and News of the World. She lives on a ranch near San Antonio, TX.
Greta is WBEZ's weekend anchor and co-hosts Nerdette Podcast, a series of conversations with artists, astronauts, and makers of pop culture. She grew up in Alaska, the only place that makes Chicago seem warm. She enjoys reading, knitting, and all the corgis, especially her own.
Yvette Johnson is the Executive Director of The Booker Wright Project, which advises organizations about unconscious bias and the importance of recognizing our shared humanity. She is also an accomplished filmmaker, writer, blogger, workshop facilitator, and public speaker. She co-produced the feature-length documentary film “Booker’s Place: A Mississippi Story.”
Gary T. Johnson has been the President of the Chicago History Museum for 12 years and the President of the association of Chicago's major museums for 10 years. His passion for Chicago history is evident through his leadership at the Chicago History Museum, focusing on community outreach.
Dirk Johnson is a former national bureau chief for The New York Times and Newsweek. He is the co-author, with Robert Owen Carr, of "Working Class to College: The Promise and Peril Facing Blue-Collar America" and "Through the Fires: An American Story of Turbulence, Business Triumph and Giving Back."
Chris Jones is theater critic for the Chicago Tribune, and he writes a Sunday column about arts and culture of all stripes. He is the author of "Bigger, Brighter Louder: 150 Years of Chicago Theater," published by the University of Chicago Press.
Britt Julious is a journalist and essayist focusing on music, art, race, feminism, culture and politics. Britt has written for Esquire, ELLE, GQ, W magazine, Vice, The Guardian, and Pitchfork. She currently pens a weekly column for the Chicago Tribune and writes for Vice’s THUMP.
After twenty-six years in federal law enforcement (INS, EPA, FBI), during which time I led numerous undercover investigations, I became a freelance writer, private investigator, and eventually wrote Miguel's Gift, a novel informed by my experiences as an agent.
Blair Kamin is the Pulitzer Prize-winning architecture critic of The Chicago Tribune. A graduate of Amherst College and the Yale School of Architecture, he lectures widely and has discussed architecture on programs such as NPR's "All Things Considered." He lives in Wilmette with his wife, author Barbara Mahany.
Anna Kang's debut picture book, You Are (Not) Small, won the 2015 Theodor Seuss Geisel Award, a Silver Honor from the Parents' Choice Awards, and was named a Notable Children's Book by the American Library Association. She has written several more picture books with her cartoonist/illustrator husband, Christopher Weyant.
Joseph Kanon is the author of seven other novels. He is also a recipient of The Anne Frank Human Writers Award for his writings on the aftermath of the Holocaust. Before becoming a full-time writer, Kanon was a book-publishing executive.
Daniel Karpowitz is the director of policy and national programs for the Bard Prison Initiative and is lecturer in law and the humanities at Bard College. He has worked as a lawyer on desegregaton in Chicago and decarceration in Philadelphia, and has been both a Fulbright and Soros Justice Fellow.
The son of a Greek immigrant grocer, Kass was born June 23, 1956, on Chicago's South Side and grew up there and in Oak Lawn. He held a number of jobs — merchant marine sailor, ditch digger, waiter — before becoming a film student at Columbia College in Chicago, where he worked at the student newspaper. He obtained an internship at the Daily Calumet in 1980, and ended up working there as a reporter until he left for the Tribune in 1983. He has won honors including the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi national award for general column writing, the Scripps Howard Foundation's National Journalism Award for commentary, the Chicago Headline Club's Lisagor Award for best daily newspaper columnist and the Chicago Tribune's Beck Award for writing. He lives in the western suburbs with his wife and twin sons.
Ibram X. Kendi is an assistant professor of African American history at the University of Florida and the author of the award-winning book The Black Campus Movement: Black Students and the Racial Reconstitution of Higher Education, 1965–1972. A frequent public speaker and writer of commentaries, Kendi lives in Gainesville, Florida.
Peter Kimani was born in 1971 in Kenya, and has published several works of fiction and poetry. In 2009, he was one of three international poets commissioned by NPR to compose and present a poem at Barack Obama’s inauguration. Dance of the Jakaranda is his third novel.
Nick Kindelsperger is a food and dining reporter for the Chicago Tribune, where he chronicles Chicago's affordable eats and once ate 243 tacos in one month. He's also written for the Washington Post, Time Out Chicago, Newsweek, New York Magazine, and Serious Eats.
Joe Knowles is the Associate Managing Editor for Sports at the Chicago Tribune and the primary editor on the Tribune's series of sports history books.
Lisa Ko is the author of The Leavers, a novel which won the 2016 PEN/Bellwether Prize for Socially Engaged Fiction. Her writing has appeared in Best American Short Stories 2016, The New York Times, Apogee Journal, Narrative, O. Magazine, and elsewhere.
Annalee Koehn has been playing and singing Traditional and Americana music since the 1990s, and is a founding member of Blackest Crow, a Chicago-based string band. She has performed with Sweeter Gift, Blue State Cowboys and on recordings by Mark Dvorak, Urban Djin and The Old Town School of Music.
Born and raised and still living in Chicago, Rick Kogan has worked for the Chicago Daily News, Chicago Sun-Times and the Tribune, where he is currently a senior writer and columnist. Named Chicago's Best Reporter in 1999 and inducted into the Chicago Journalism Hall of Fame in 2003, he is currently host of “After Hours with Rick Kogan” on WGN radio. He is the author of a dozen books, including “Everybody Pays: Two Men, One Murder and the Price of Truth” (with Maurice Possley), “America's Mom: The Life, Lessons and Legacy of Ann Landers,” “A Chicago Tavern,” the history of the Billy Goat, and “Sidewalks I” and “Sidewalks II,” collections of his columns and the work of photographer Charles Osgood.
Julilly Kohler-Hausmann is a history professor at Cornell University. Her first book, Getting Tough: Welfare and Imprisonment in 1970s America, was released in May of 2017.
Andrew Koppelman is John Paul Stevens Professor of Law and Professor (by courtesy) of Political Science at Northwestern University. His latest books are The Tough Luck Constitution and the Assault on Health Care Reform (Oxford, 2013) and Defending American Religious Neutrality (Harvard, 2013).
Scaachi Koul was born and raised in Calgary, Alberta, and is a senior writer at BuzzFeed Canada. Her writing has also appeared in The New Yorker, The Hairpin, The Globe and Mail, and Jezebel. One Day We’ll All Be Dead and None of This Will Matter is her first book.
Mary Robinette Kowal is the author of historical fantasy novels: Ghost Talkers, and The Glamourist Histories series. She is also a three time Hugo Award winner. Her short fiction appears in Uncanny, Tor.com, and Asimov’s. Mary, a professional puppeteer, lives in Chicago. Visit her online at maryrobinettekowal.com.
Bruce Kraig, PhD, is the co-editor of Street Food: Everything You Need to Know About Open-Air Stands, Carts, and Food Trucks Across the Globe, as well as an internationally recognized food historian who has written and hosted a series of award-winning food documentaries for PBS.
DANIEL KRAUS landed on Entertainment Weekly's Top 10 Books of 2015 (The Death and Life of Zebulon Finch), won two Odyssey Awards (Rotters and Scowler), and has been a Library Guild selection and Bram Stoker finalist. With filmmaker Guillermo del Toro, he co-authored Trollhunters, recently adapted into a Netflix series.
Bill Kurtis is an acclaimed television documentary host and producer and news anchor. He runs his own multimedia production company, having traveled the world for the Peabody Award-winning PBS series The New Explorers. Bill is currently the host of THROUGH THE DECADES, on the DECADES Channel. And is Peter Sagal’s co-host on the weekly news quiz, “Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me,” on NPR radio. Using his journalistic skills and his background as a law school graduate, Bill authored, The Death Penalty on Trial: Crisis in American Justice which explores issues surrounding capital punishment in America. He has also authored, Bill Kurtis On Assignment, that also features his own photographs. He provided the satirical narration for the feature film comedy Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy.
Catherine Lacey is the author of The Answers and Nobody Is Ever Missing, winner of a 2016 Whiting Award. In April 2017, she was named one of Granta's Best Young American Novelists. Born in Mississippi, she is now based in Chicago.
Carol LaChapelle is a writer, teacher, and the author of Finding Your Voice, Telling Your Stories (Marion Street Press, 2008). She has taught writing and journal writing workshops for 25 years in a variety of adult education venues, and for professional audiences, including teachers, clergy, and therapists.
Laura Lampton Scott is the senior associate editor of the oral history Lavil: Life, Love, and Death in Port-au-Prince (Voice of Witness/Verso). Her work has appeared in Michigan Quarterly Review, Tin House's Open Bar, and other publications.
Survived Warsaw Ghetto Uprising and Majdanek Extermination Camp. Have a masters degree in education. Taught public school. Author of a memoir, "Transcending Darkness / A Girl's Journey out of the Holocaust," published by Texas Tech University Press, and named finalist for the 2012 WoreWord Reviews Book of the Year Awards.
Ann Leary is the New York Times bestselling author of The Good House, and two previous books, An Innocent, A Broad and Outtakes from a Marriage.She has written short fiction and essays for the New York Times, Ploughshares, NPR’s “You Must Read This,” among various others.
David Leite is a triple James Beard Award-winning memoirist, cookbook author, food writer, and publisher of Leite's Culinaria (LCcooks.com). He's written for the New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, Saveur, Chicago Tribune, among others. His latest book is Notes on a Banana: A Memoir of Food, Love, and Manic Depression.
Michael Lenehan is an award-winning Chicago-based writer and editor who for many years was the chief editorial executive at the Chicago Reader. He is the author of Much Ado: A Summer with a Repertory Theater Company, an in-depth and endearing profile of the American Players Theatre.
Steven Levingston is the non-fiction book editor of the Washington Post and author of "Kennedy and King", "Little Demon in the City of Light", and "The Kennedy Baby." He has reported and edited for the Wall Street Journal and International Herald Tribune.
BookClub is located in a warm and inviting book arts studio storefront in Wicker Park. It is a fantastic location for existing book clubs to meet or join one of our own curated bookclubs.
Billy Lombardo is the author of three books of fiction, including "How to Hold a Woman," and "The Logic of a Rose: Chicago Stories." A Nelson Algren Award winner, Billy is managing editor of PolyphonyHS, a student-run, international litmag for HS writers and editors. Billy teaches at the Latin School.
Freda Love Smith is a rock drummer, food writer, and lecturer in the School of Communication at Northwestern University. She is the co-founder of the bands The Mysteries of Life and The Blake Babies. Her first book, "Red Velvet Underground, a rock memoir, with recipes", came out in 2015.
Cari Lynn is a journalist and the author or co-author of several books of narrative nonfiction (Random House, St. Martin's, etc.) and a historical novel (Penguin). A longtime Chicagoan, Cari has written for the Chicago Tribune, O (Oprah) Magazine, Chicago mag, and numerous other publications.
Dr. Evan Lyon has worked in Haiti since 1996 and is currently the Chief Integrated Health Officer at Heartland Health Outreach in Chicago. Through his work with Partners in Health, Lyon has helped community-based responses to address HIV, tuberculosis and broader public health concerns throughout Haiti.
As commentary editor Lythcott decides which opinion pieces will appear in the newspaper. Lythcott began her career in print journalism in the late 1970’s. She worked for four years as an education and police beat reporter for a local newspaper in Madison-Wisconsin. Then, in 1982, she was hired by the Chicago Tribune newspaper and began writing editorial pieces. Before becoming commentary editor, Lythcott was op-ed editor and was one of the highest ranking African American women on the Tribune’s editorial board.
A life-long romance reader, Sarah MacLean wrote her first romance novel on a dare, and never looked back. This New York Times bestselling author of historical romances also writes a monthly column at The Washington Post celebrating the best of the romance genre. She lives in New York City.
Brian has been a page designer at the Chicago Tribune for 11 years, working mainly with the Sunday edition, but also with daily Page One and news pages. He previously worked at the Rocky Mountain News and San Diego Union-Tribune.
Yvonne Maffei is the author of My Halal Kitchen: Global Recipes, Cooking Tips, and Lifestyle Inspiration. She also founded the very popular cooking blog MyHalalKitchen.com and has earned a vast following in the U.S. and internationally. Her recipes specialize in adhering to halal standards and focusing on all-natural, organic ingredients.
Barbara Mahany, author and journalist, writes about stumbling on the sacred amid the cacophony of the domestic melee. She was a Tribune feature writer for 30 years, and once a pediatric oncology nurse. In her book, Motherprayer: Lessons in Loving, Mahany turns her attention to the sacred mysteries of mothering.
Rebecca Makkai is the Chicago-based author of the novels The Borrower and The Hundred-Year House, and the story collection Music for Wartime -- four stories from which appeared in The Best American Short Stories. She teaches at Northwestern University, and is Creative Director for StoryStudio Chicago.
Like many women her age, MEREDITH MARAN has a hard time believing she’s a woman her age. And yet she’s published more than a dozen books, including The New Old Me and Why We Write About Ourselves. Meredith lives in a Silver Lake bungalow that’s even older than she is.
Nate Marshall is from the South Side of Chicago. He is the author of Wild Hundreds and an editor of The BreakBeat Poets: New American Poetry in the Age of Hip-Hop. He is the Director of National Programs at Young Chicago Authors. He is @illuminatemics on Twitter.
Jeremy McCarter is the author of Young Radicals, a new account of idealistic Americans fighting for their ideals in the World War I years, and the co-author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Hamilton: The Revolution with Lin-Manuel Miranda. He spent five years on the artistic staff of the Public Theater in New York. He has written about culture and politics for New York Magazine, Newsweek, The New York Times, and Buzzfeed. He lives in Chicago.
Ann McGlinn is the author of the novel El Penco (Cuidono Press) and a teacher of writing and literature at the Latin School of Chicago.
Nneka McGuire is editor of the Real Estate and Homes sections at the Chicago Tribune. Her bylines have appeared in the Tribune, CS Magazine and Ozy.com. She serves on the board of the Association for Women Journalists-Chicago and holds a B.A. in creative writing from Columbia University in New York.
Colin McMahon is Associate Editor at the Chicago Tribune, leading the features department as well as the newsroom’s design, editing and production teams. A longtime reporter and foreign correspondent, McMahon focuses on finding innovative ways to deliver content and expand the Chicago Tribune’s audience.
Kristen McQueary is a member of the Chicago Tribune Editorial Board. Her focus includes government, politics and education policy. Before joining the Tribune, she wrote a political column for the Sun-Times News Group and worked for WBEZ and the Chicago News Cooperative, which published in The New York Times.
Joe Meno is a fiction writer and playwright who lives in Chicago. He is the winner of the Nelson Algren Literary Award, a Pushcart Prize, the Great Lakes Book Award, and a finalist for the Story Prize. His most recent novel is Marvel and A Wonder.
Jonathan Messinger is the writer and producer of The Alien Adventures of Finn Caspian, a science-fiction podcast for kids, an iTunes Top Ten podcast. As a founder of Featherproof Books, he spent many happy hours of his life baking in the sun, selling books at previous Printers Row Lit Fests.
Griffin Messinger is the 7-year-old editor of The Alien Adventures of Finn Caspian podcast, helping guide the science-fiction story. He's also consulted on several other podcasts for kids, and has built 1,354 Lego robots (estimated).
Janet Mock is a TV host, speaker and author of the New York Times bestseller Redefining Realness and Surpassing Certainty. With an MA in journalism from New York University, Janet hosts “Never Before,” a podcast for Lenny, produced HBO’s The Trans List, and spoke at the Women's March in Washington.
Cultural critic, award-winning journalist, and bestselling comics anthologist Anne Elizabeth Moore was born in Winner, SD. She is the author of Unmarketable (Best Book, Mother Jones), Cambodian Grrrl, Threadbare, and others. Her long-running investigative comics journalism series runs on Truthout. Body Horror: Capitalism, Fear, Misogyny, Jokes comes out in April.
From Chicago's Albany Park neighborhood, Roger Morales has been a multimedia producer within the Tribune company for four years. Recipient of two Chicago Tribune Jones Beck Awards, 2012 Ire recipient, 2015 National Association for Hispanic Journalist for Multimedia Features recipient.
Amy joined the Steppenwolf ensemble in 1997 and has directed Clybourne Park, American Buffalo and Dublin Carol, among others. She has performed in 30+ Steppenwolf shows, including Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? & August: Osage County. She returns for Taylor Mac's Hir in July. She stars on NBC’s Chicago PD
Randy Mosher is the author of five beer/brewing books, including Tasting Beer, Mastering Homebrew and Beer for All Seasons. Mosher is a teaches at the Siebel Institute, and is a creative consultant for craft breweries. He is a partner in two Chicago-area breweries: 5 Rabbit Cerveceria and Forbidden Root.
Jordan Mozer is the founder of Jordan Mozer and Associates, Limited, a 33 year old inter disciplinary Chicago studio of architects, artists and storytellers creating public spaces and artwork all over the world.
Jessica Murnane is a wellness advocate, podcast host, and creator of the One Part Plant movement. With her new cookbook, ONE PART PLANT: A Simple Guide to Eating Real, One Meal at a Time, she’s working to get everyone to start eating one plant-based meal each day.
Public radio reporter Lisa Napoli is the author of Ray & Joan: The Man Who Made the McDonald's Fortune and the Woman Who Gave it All Away. Her first book, Radio Shangri-La, was a memoir about her time in Bhutan. She lives in Los Angeles.
Toni Nealie is the author of The Miles Between Me, an essay collection about borders, heritage and family. Previously a journalist in the U.K and her homeland Aotearoa New Zealand, she now teaches and writes in Chicago. She is Literary Editor of Newcity and co-editor of The Sunday Rumpus.
R. J. Nelson is a former superintendent of special services and director of harbors and marine services for the Chicago Park District, positions he held from 1987 to 1993. He is also the retired CEO of the Hammond (Indiana) Port Authority. He lives in the South Shore neighborhood of Chicago.
Jessica Neptune is Director of the Bard Prison Initiative Chicago office. She received her Ph.D. in History from the University of Chicago where she studied the origins of mass incarceration. She worked on the Obama Administration’s Federal Interagency Reentry Council as an American Council of Learned Societies Public Fellow.
Born in Prague, Anna Nessy Perlberg escaped to America in 1939, eventually settling in Chicago. Her memoir, The House in Prague, speaks of the challenges of a young immigrant, and her family’s Holocaust survivors. Perlberg holds an MA in History from Columbia and an MSW from the University of Illinois.
Kara Newman is the author of Shake.Stir.Sip: More Than 50 Effortless Cocktails Made in Equal Parts. She's also the author of Road Soda: Recipes and techniques for making great cocktails, anywhere (coming October 2017).
Audrey Niffenegger is a writer and artist who is based in Chicago. Her books include the novels The Time Traveler's Wife and Her Fearful Symmetry as well as the illustrated books Raven Girl and The Night Bookmobile. She and Eddie Campbell are collaborating on a new book, out in 2018.
Josh Noel writes about beer and travel for the Chicago Tribune and is publishing a book in 2018 about Goose Island Beer Co., Anheuser-Busch InBev and the rise of craft beer (Chicago Review Press).
Elise Paschen is the author of The Nightlife (2017), Bestiary, and Infidelities (Roerich Prize). Her poems have been published in The New Yorker and Poetry and in numerous anthologies. She is the editor of NYT best-selling anthology, Poetry Speaks to Children, and co-editor of Poetry Speaks and Poetry in Motion.
Celia C. Perez is a writer and librarian in Chicago. Her zines and writing have been featured in The Horn Book Magazine, Latina, El Andar, Venus Zine, and NPR’s Talk of the Nation and Along for the Ride. The First Rule of Punk is her first book for young readers.
Audrey Petty's work has been featured in such publications as Columbia Journal, StoryQuarterly, The Massachusetts Review, Saveur, ColorLines, Oxford American, and Gravy. She's editor of High Rise Stories: Voices from Chicago Public Housing. A favorite memory: listening to authors featured in Even A Lion Can Get Lost in the Jungle.
April Peveteaux is the author of Bake Sales Are My B*tch. She writes the popular blog, Gluten is My Bitch. She is thrilled to be back at Printers Row where she can see what else is going on in the world of food, books, and the great city of Chicago.
Michael Phillips is the film critic of the Chicago Tribune, and as a guest host on Turner Classic Movies he has introduced everything from “Citizen Kane” to “Escape from New York.” He appears monthly on the Chicago Public Radio program Filmspotting, and for WFMT-FM, he wrote and hosted “The Film Score: Music for Memorial Day.”
Christian Picciolini is the author of 'Romantic Violence: Memoirs of an American Skinhead,' co-founder of Life After Hate -- a nonprofit helping people disengage from hateful groups and ideologies -- and a former leader of the early American neo-Nazi skinhead movement, who is now at the forefront of dismantling it.
Jill is the founder and director of StoryStudio Chicago—a writing training center for creative writers and business professionals. In addition to teaching, writing, and forcing people to admit that they can’t live without great stories, Jill oversees writing training for more than 1,200 students each year.
Sharon Pomerantz’s first novel Rich Boy was a 2011 winner of the National Jewish Book Award, and an Entertainment Weekly and Booklist Best of the Year pick. Her short fiction has appeared in numerous literary journals and in Best American Short Stories. She's at work on her second novel.
Music Lessons Vol. 1, by Norbert Putnam, is the first in a series of books recounting the career of a musician who contributed to thousands of recordings with such artists as The Beatles, Elvis Presley and Ray Charles. He produced seminal recordings for Jimmy Buffett, Joan Baez and Dan Fogelberg.
Trey Radel is an American politician and former Republican congressman who represented Florida's 19th Congressional District. Radel has previously worked as a television reporter, anchor, newspaper publisher, and talk radio host. He currently runs a media training and communications consulting firm, the Trey Radel Media Group. He lives with his wife and child in Fort Myers, FL. His latest book is Democrazy.
Lori Rader-Day, author of The Day I Died, Little Pretty Things, and The Black Hour, is the recipient of the 2016 Mary Higgins Clark Award and the 2015 Anthony Award for Best First Novel. Lori lives in Chicago, where she is president of the Mystery Writers of America Midwest Chapter.
Howard Reich is the Chicago Tribune’s Emmy Award-winning arts critic and has covered music and related subjects for the newspaper since 1978. He’s the author of five books, including “Prisoner of Her Past,” which became a PBS documentary film of the same name.
Thomas E. Ricks is an adviser on national security at the New America Foundation. A member of two Pulitzer Prize-winning teams, he is the author of the number one New York Times bestseller Fiasco, a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, and most recently, Churchill & Orwell: The Fight for Freedom.
Emily Robbins’ debut A WORD FOR LOVE was inspired by her Fulbright Fellowship in Syria where she studied religion and language with a women's mosque movement and lived with a leading intellectual family. She holds a B.A. from Swarthmore College and an MFA from Washington University in St. Louis.
Two-time GRAMMY Nominee Justin Roberts is truly one of the “all-stars” of indie family music. His 13th recording for families, Lemonade, is a return to the simplicity of his earliest albums. Justin’s newest children’s book, The Great Henry Hopendower, will be released by Putnam in June, 2017.
LUIS J. RODRÍGUEZ has published fifteen books of poetry, children’s literature, fiction, and nonfiction. He is best known for his memoir, Always Running: La Vida Loca: Gang Days in L.A.He is the former Poet Laureate of Los Angeles. Rodríguez is aScholar in Residence at California State University, Northridge.
Richard Roeper is the nationally syndicated movie critic of the Chicago Sun-Times. Roeper has written 4,000 columns and nine books. He was the co-host of "Ebert & Roeper." Roeper is the co-host of "Good Day Chicago" on Fox Chicago and is a regular on WGN radio.
A founding editor of Rose Metal Press and a founding member of Poems While You Wait, Kathleen Rooney is co-editor of Rene Magritte: Selected Writings and her novel Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk was published by St. Martin’s Press. She lives in Chicago with her husband, the writer Martin Seay.
Renée Rosen is the bestselling author of WHAT THE LADY WANTS, DOLLFACE and WHITE COLLAR GIRL as well as the recently released, WINDY CITY BLUES, about Chess Records, the blues and the Civil Rights Movement was recently published. She lives in Chicago and is at work on a new novel.
Jared Rouben, President and Brewmaster of Moody Tongue, launched the culinary brewing company in Chicago during the summer of 2014, using a chef’s mindset to highlight flavors and aromatics in balanced beers. Follow Rouben on social media at @jbrew312 or find more information on www.moodytongue.com or @moodytongue.
David Royko (davidroyko.com) is the author/editor of, among many other publications, Royko in Love, Mike's Letters to Carol (Hardcover 2010/Audiobook 2017), about his father's mission to woo and marry his mother via letters from an air force base in 1954. Chicago columnist Mike Royko won the Pulitzer Prize in 1972.
Jonathan Safran Foer is the author of two bestselling, award-winning novels, Everything Is Illuminated and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, and a bestselling work of nonfiction, Eating Animals. Here I Am is his latest novel. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.
Peter Sagal is an American playwright, screenwriter, actor, humorist, essayist, journalist and host of the National Public Radio game show Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! and the PBS special Constitution USA with Peter Sagal.
Marcus Sakey's books have sold more than a million copies and been translated into dozens of languages. He lives in Chicago with his wife and daughter.
Nancy Sayre owns Golden Alley Press, an independent publisher in Emmaus, Pennsylvania. Her mission: to bring interesting new voices to light, particularly in the areas of memoir and fiction. An accomplished editor with a passion for marketing and standout cover design, she helps authors write books that connect with readers.
Chicago Tribune columnist Mary Schmich won the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for commentary. A collection of her columns has been released as a book, “Even the Terrible Things Seem Beautiful to Me Now.” Her most famous column, loosely known as “Wear Sunscreen” has been a bestselling book and CD.
Nara Schoenberg is a features reporter at the Chicago Tribune, where she writes about relationships, health and books. She has interviewed Ray Bradbury, Junot Diaz and Barbara Taylor Bradford, and her articles have appeared in the Los Angeles Times, The Baltimore Sun and The (London) Independent. She lives in Oak Park.
Whitney Scott wears many hats in Chicago's literary scene: author, editor, publisher, book reviewer and writing coach, she has published the "Black-and-White" annual anthologies for 22 years. The anthologies, poetry, essays and fiction focus on themes ranging from "Home" and "The Mountain" to "Family Gatherings" and various nature themes.
Donna Seaman is an Editor of Adult Books at Booklist; a member of the advisory council for the American Writers Museum; and a recipient of the James Friend Memorial Award for Literary Criticism and the Studs Terkel Humanities Service Award. She lives in Chicago
Doree Shafrir is a senior culture writer at BuzzFeed News and has written for New York Magazine, Slate, The Awl, Rolling Stone, Wired and other publications. Startup is her first novel.
DANI SHAPIRO is the author of four nonfiction memoirs and five novels. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker, Vogue, The New York Times, among others. She has taught at four university writing programs; she is cofounder of the Sirenland Writers Conference. Shapiro lives with her family in Connecticut.
Anna joined the ensemble in 2005 and became Artistic Director in 2015. She received 2008 Tony Award for Best Director for August: Osage County. Recent Steppenwolf credits include Visiting Edna & Mary Page Marlowe. She is a graduate of the Yale School of Drama &Columbia and is a Northwestern professor
Jessica Shattuck is the award-winning author of The Hazards of Good Breeding, a NYTimes Notable Book and finalist for the PEN/Winship Award. Her writing has appeared in the New York Times, The New Yorker, and Glamour, among others. A graduate of Harvard University, she received her MFA from Columbia University.
Daniel Shumski is a writer, editor, and author of Will it Skillet? and Will it Waffle?, which won praise from the New York Times, People magazine, and Food52. Between stints at the Chicago Sun-Times and the Chicago Tribune, he worked for a Midwestern heirloom apple orchard. He lives in Montreal.
Marc J. Sievers is a cookbook author & entertaining expert. He has been on Food Network, writes for numerous food and entertaining publications, and has his own YouTube web series 'From My Kitchen to Yours' and editorial 'La Vie Piquant' at his web site (marcsievers.com).
Scott Simon is the award-winning host of NPR's Weekend Edition Saturday. A contributor to NPR for over thirty years, Simon has won every major award in broadcasting, including the Peabody and the Emmy. A Chicago native, his most recent book is MY CUBS: A Love Story.
Cookbook author Anupy Singla's latest cookbook, Indian For Everyone, which was released in paperback in October 2016, is a compilation of the most popular Indian recipes outside of India. Born in India, Anupy grew up visiting her grandfather's childhood village in Punjab, developing her love of Indian food and cooking.
National Book Award finalist, Patricia Smith is the author of Incendiary Art: Poems (TriQuarterly, 2017). Her awards include the 2014 Rebekah Johnson Bobbitt National Prize from the Library of Congress. She is an associate professor of English at CUNY/College of Staten Island, and on faculty at Sierra Nevada College.
Author of Paris, He Said, Little Known Facts, and the story collection Portraits of a Few of the People I've Made Cry. Her stories have appeared in The Best American Short Stories, The O. Henry Prize Stories, New England Review, The Southern Review, and elsewhere. She lives in Evanston, Illinois.
Jenn Sodini hosts and co-produces CHIRP Radio’s The First Time, a live-music-and-storytelling series held quarterly at Martyrs’, and Psychotic Break, Chicago's premiere mental-illness-themed variety show, (1st Wednesday of every month at Schuba's. She's been featured on The Moth Radio Hour and tells stories all over town, sometimes formally.
Sharon Solwitz is the author of Once, In Lourdes. Her other works include the novel Bloody Mary and an award-winning collection of short stories, Blood and Milk. Solwitz teaches fiction writing at Purdue University and lives in Chicago with her husband, the poet Barry Silesky.
Stacy St. Clair is a reporter for the Chicago Tribune. Her work has been honored by Harvard University’s Nieman Foundation, the National Headliner Awards and the Society of Professional Journalists, among others. She has a journalism degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia, with minors in politics and Spanish.
Former Miami Herald investigative reporter and Knight-Ridder New York Bureau Chief now with an endowed professorship at the University of Nebraska College of Journalism. Author of two previous books - one of which was a Pulitzer nominee translated into 6 languages and the other being developed into a feature film.
Neil Steinberg is a recovering alcoholic who documented his early recovery in Drunkard. As years went by, he found poetry, philosophy, and quotes from literature that helped fortify and enrich long-term sobriety, and with Sara Bader collected them into Out of the Wreck I Rise: A Literary Companion to Recovery.
Heidi Stevens is a columnist at the Chicago Tribune, where she has worked since 1998. Her daily column, Balancing Act, tackles parenting, relationships, education policy, body image, gender bias and all the ways they intersect with current events. Stevens lives in Chicago’s Logan Square neighborhood with her husband and children.
Megan Stielstra is the author of three collections including The Wrong Way to Save Your Life, forthcoming in August from Harper Perennial. Her work appears in the Best American Essays, New York Times, Poets & Writers, Guernica, Buzzfeed, and on National Public Radio. She teaches creative writing at Northwestern University.
Geoffrey R. Stone is the Edward H. Levi Distinguished Professor of Law at the University of Chicago. He is a renowned constitutional scholar whose most recent book, Sex and the Constitution, deals with the history of sex, religion, and law from ancient times to the present.
LAURIE STONE is the author of My Life as an Animal: Stories. A longtime writer for the Village Voice, she has been a theater critic for The Nation and critic-at-large on NPR’s Fresh Air. She lives in New York City.
I am an entertainment reporter and Chicago Inc. columnist for the Chicago Tribune. Before I joined the Tribune in 2015, I was a reporter for the Tribune's commuter tabloid RedEye.
Ben Tanzer is the author of the newly released book Be Cool - a memoir (sort of), among others. He also oversees the lifestyle empire This Blog Will Change Your Life (changeyourlifethiswill.com) and frequently speaks on the topics of messaging, podcasting, social media, blogging, fiction/essay writing and independent publishing.
Natasha Tarpley is the author of "The Harlem Charade" and "I Love My Hair!" She is the recipient of numerous awards, including a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship. She is the founder of Voonderbar! Productions, LLC, a multimedia children's entertainment company. She lives in Chicago, Illinois.
Elizabeth Taylor is the Chicago Tribune's Literary Editor at Large. She has chaired four Pulitzer Prize committees. Past President of the National Book Critics Circle, she now serves on the Board of Directors and is co-author of "American Pharaoh: Mayor Richard J. Daley, His Battle for Chicago and the Nation."
Colleen Taylor Sen is the co-editor of Street Food: Everything You Need to Know About Open-Air Stands, Carts, and Food Trucks Across the Globe. She is a writer specializing in the cuisine of the Indian subcontinent.
Frank is a teacher, essayist, and book critic. He lives in Rogers Park.
AMY THIELEN is the author of the memoir "Give a Girl a Knife" and the cookbook "The New Midwestern Table," which won the James Beard Award for American Cooking. She also hosted the James Beard-nominated Heartland Table on Food Network and is a contributing editor at "Saveur." More at amythielen.com.
Pulitzer Prize winner, Heather Ann Thompson is an award-winning historian at the University of Michigan. She has written on the history of mass incarceration as well as its current impact, for The New York Times, Time, The Atlantic, Salon, Dissent, New Labor Forum, and The Huffington Post. Her most recent book is Blood in the Water.
Patricia Toht is a children's author, poet, blogger, middle school library associate, and former children's bookstore owner. Her poetry has appeared in magazines and anthologies. Her picture books ALL ABOARD THE LONDON BUS and PICK A PINE TREE debut in 2017.
Scott Turow is the author of ten bestselling works of fiction and two nonfiction books. His books have been translated into more than forty languages, sold more than thirty million copies worldwide, and have been adapted into movies and television projects. TESTIMONY will be released on May 16, 2017.
Thrity Umrigar is the previous author of five novels including The Space Between Us, The Story Hour, and Bombay Time. She is the winner of the Nieman Fellowship to Harvard and 2006 finalist for the PEN/Beyond Margins Award. She is an Armington professor of English at Case Western Reserve University.
Laura Dassow Walls is the William P. and Hazel B. White Professor of English at the University of Notre Dame.
E. Jason Wambsgans has been a staff photographer at the Chicago Tribune since 2002, covering a wide range of news and feature assignments. Wambsgans has spent the last four years intensively documenting the problem of Chicago’s gun violence. He was awarded the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for Feature Photography.
Rob Warden is executive director emeritus and co-founder of the Center on Wrongful Convictions (CWC) at Northwestern University School of Law and a founding director of the Innocent Network, an international affiliation of organizations providing pro bono legal services to convicted men and women with claims of actual innocence. Before joining Northwestern, Warden was editor and publisher of the legal affairs monthly Chicago Lawyer, and investigative reporter and Middle East correspondent for the Chicago Daily News and the Chicago bureau chief for the Washington Post.
Lew Watts is originally from Wales and now lives in Chicago and Santa Fe. His poetry has appeared in numerous journals and anthologies and his first collection, "Lessons for Tangueoros," was published in 2011. He is the author of the 2016 novel "Marcel Malone."
Lara Weber is a member of the Tribune's Editorial Board and has been an editor and writer at the Tribune since the early '90s. From 2000-02, she lived in a remote village in Zambia as a Peace Corps volunteer, working in the public health sector.
Irvine Welsh has published eleven novels and four collections of short stories. His first novel, “Trainspotting,” has been adapted both as a play and as a feature film. The sequel to the film, “Trainspotting 2,” is based on Welsh’s novel “Porno” and will be released worldwide in February. His other literary works include “The Acid House,” “Marabou Stork Nightmares,” “Ecstasy: Three Tales of Chemical Romance,” “Filth,” “Glue,” “Porno,” “The Bedroom Secrets of the Master Chefs,” “If You Liked School You’ll Love Work,” “Contamination,” “The Weekenders,” “Travels in the Heart of Africa,” “Crime,” “Skagboys,” “The Sex Lives of Siamese Twins,” “A Decent Ride” and “The Blade Artist.” Welsh has also written several stage plays, including “Headstate,” “You’ll Have Had Your Hole” and the musical “Blackpool.” Don De Grazia is the author of the critically acclaimed novel, “American Skin.” His work has appeared in Chicago Tribune, Chicago Reader, Newcity, TriQuarterly, The Outlaw Bible of American Literature, The Italian American Reader, Rumpus, The Great Lakes Review, Make Magazine and other publications. He is also a screenwriter in the Writers Guild of America (east) and co-founder/co-host of Come Home Chicago, a live event series dedicated to celebrating the Chicago storytelling tradition in all its forms. Don is a full time faculty member in the Columbia College Chicago Creative Writing program.
Christopher Weyant is a cartoonist for The New Yorker magazine and illustrator of the Theodor Seuss Geisel (Dr. Seuss) awarding winning YOU ARE (NOT) SMALL, written by Anna Kang. He has also illustrated THAT'S (NOT) MINE, I AM (NOT) SCARED (Two Lions), CAN I TELL YOU A SECRET? (HarpersCollins).
Jennifer White is the co-host of WBEZ’s Morning Shift and the host of the WBEZ documentary podcast, Making Oprah. She was previously local host of All Things Considered at Michigan Radio. A native of Detroit and graduate of the University of Michigan, she has worked in public media since 1999.
PAULA WHYMAN is the author of You May See a Stranger: Stories. Her stories have also been published in Ploughshares, McSweeney’s Quarterly, Virginia Quarterly Review, and other literary journals. She has received fellowships from the MacDowell Colony and Yaddo. A native of Washington, D.C., she now lives in Maryland.
Dan Wiederer is an award-winning sportswriter and published author who currently covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune. In 2010, he published "Blue Streak," an insider's account of the University of North Carolina's 2008-09 run to college basketball's national championship.
Auschwitz survivor – author of: The Arrival, a Holocaust Memoir; retired language teacher; M.A. from the University of Chicago; speaker at the Holocaust Museum.
Mary Wisniewski is a reporter and columnist for the Chicago Tribune. Previously a reporter for Reuters and the Chicago Sun-Times, Wisniewski has won numerous journalism awards and published literary reviews. She is also teaching a class this summer on creative journal writing at the Newberry Library.
Author "Grown-up Anger: The Connected Mysteries of Bob Dylan, Woody Guthrie, and the Calumet Massacre of 1913," (HarperCollins). Have both read poetry and discussed non-fiction at Printers Row, always to bright, interested audiences. This time it'll be unions, folk music, and a century of American resistance.
Lili Wright is the author of the Mexican thriller Dancing with the Tiger, nominated for a 2017 Edgar Award. Her essays have appeared in The New York Times, Newsweek, and Good Housekeeping. She teaches English at DePauw University. Check out her books, comic essays, and Mexican mask collection at www.liliwright.com.
Michele Wucker (www.wucker.com) is the author, most recently, of the international best seller THE GRAY RHINO: How to Recognize and Act on the Obvious Dangers We Ignore. A former financial journalist and think tank executive, she is now a speaker and strategic advisor based in Chicago.
Nili Yelin created her "sit down, stand up style of storytelling" combining her passion for picture books, comedy, mommyhood and little ones. As The Storybook Mom. Nili performs weekly around the Chicago area. Nili has performed at The Field Museum, University Club of Chicago, libraries, schools and festivals. www.storybookmom.com
Stephen Young began at Poetry magazine in 1988 and served as Senior Editor for many years before he became Program Director at the Poetry Foundation in 2003. In his current role he plans public events and runs the Poetry Out Loud National Recitation Contest for high school students.