Fox Benwell is a passionate author, educator, and academic, with a particular interest in the intersections between culture, literature, and learning. He holds a BA in international education, an MA in writing for young people (distinction) from Bath Spa University, and is working on his PhD, examining disability representation in current anglophone young adult literature. He teaches creative writing, as well as teaching in a SEN setting. He's delivered several academic papers and school workshops on the topics of disability and LGBTQIA+ representation. Mostly, he's an author and lover of stories. His debut novel The Last Leaves Falling was a CBC Notable Children's Book in Children's Studies, a USBBY Outstanding International Book, on the Arkansas Teen Book Award Reading List, and longlisted for the Carnegie Greenaway Medal. He also wrote Kaleidoscope Song, has contributed to three anthologies: Unbroken, Proud and Out Now, and is currently working on several new adventures.
Tanya Boteju is a teacher and writer living on unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations (Vancouver, British Columbia). Part-time, she teaches English to clever and sassy young people. The rest of her time, she writes and procrastinates from writing. Her novel, Kings, Queens, and In-Betweens was named a Top Ten Indie Next Pick by the American Booksellers Association, as well as selected for the American Librarian Association 2020 Rainbow List. Her work appears in the anthology Out Now and her latest young adult novel, Bruised, has been selected as a Gold Standard book by the Junior Library Guild. In both teaching and writing, she is committed to positive, diverse representation. Visit her at TanyaBoteju.com.
Will Kostakis is an award-winning author, but his real claims to fame are a Twitter spat with Guy Sebastian, and that time a member of Destiny's Child said his name. Visit willkostakis.com to find out more.
MEREDITH RUSSO was born, raised, and lives in Tennessee. She started living as her true self in late 2013 and never looked back. If I Was Your Girl was partially inspired by her experiences as a trans woman. Like Amanda, Meredith is a gigantic nerd who spends a lot of her time obsessing over video games and Star Wars.
Jessica Verdi lives in Brooklyn, NY, and received her MFA in Writing for Children from The New School. She loves seltzer, Tabasco sauce, TV, vegetarian soup, flip-flops, and her dog. Visit her at www.jessicaverdi.com and follow her on Twitter @jessverdi.
Editor of the Chicklit series, Kate Hart, grew up wearing school uniforms and has sworn never to take a job that requires her outfits to match those of her coworkers. She lives in the Boston area with her two pugs, Norman and Sarah Jessica.
C.B. Lee is a Lambda Literary Award nominated writer of young adult and middle grade fiction. Their works include A Clash of Steel: A Treasure Island Remix (Feiwel and Friends), the Sidekick Squad series (Duet Books), Ben 10 graphic novels (Boom! Studios), Out Now: Queer We Go Again (HarperTeen), Minecraft: The Shipwreck (Del Rey Books), and From A Certain Point Of View: The Empire Strikes Back (Del Rey Books). Lee's work has been featured in Teen Vogue, Wired Magazine, Hypable, Tor's Best of Fantasy and Sci Fi and the American Library Association's Rainbow List.
Tara Sim can typically be found wandering the wilds of the Bay Area in California. When she's not chasing cats or lurking in bookstores, she writes books about magic, clocks, and explosives. She is the author of Timekeeper and Chainbreaker. Follow her on Twitter at @EachStarAWorld, and check out her website for fun Timekeeper extras.
Katherine Locke is the critically-acclaimed award-winning author of This Rebel Heart, The Girl with the Red Balloon, What Are Your Words? and other titles. They also co-edited and contributed to This Is Our Rainbow and It's A Whole Spiel. They live and write in Philadelphia with their feline overlords and an endless supply of chai lattes.
Mark Oshiro is the award-winning author of the young adult books Anger Is a Gift (Schneider Family Book Award) and Each of Us a Desert, as well as their middle grade debut, The Insiders. They are also the coauthor (with Rick Riordan) of the #1 New York Times bestselling novel The Sun and the Star. When not writing, they are trying to pet every dog in the world. Visit them online at www.markoshiro.com.
Caleb Roehrig is a former actor and television producer who cannot seem to live in one place. Currently dividing his time between Chicago and Helsinki, he is an expert at writing on planes and recovering from jet lag. His young adult titles include Teach the Torches to Burn: A Romeo & Juliet Remix; the acclaimed thrillers Last Seen Leaving, White Rabbit, Death Prefers Blondes, and The Fell of Dark; and The Poison Pen--a tie-in to the CW's popular Riverdale television series--and the Archie Horror original novel A Werewolf in Riverdale. His short stories have appeared in anthologies such as His Hideous Heart, Out Now, and Serendipity. Wherever he's living at the moment, he's there with his husband and an overabundance of books.
Eliot Schrefer is a New York Times bestselling author, has twice been a finalist for the National Book Award in Young People's Literature, and has won the Green Earth Book Award and the Sigurd F. Olson Nature Writing Award for Children's Literature. His novels include the Lost Rainforest series, Endangered, Threatened, Rescued, Orphaned, and two books in the Spirit Animals series. He lives in New York City, is on the faculty of the Hamline University and Fairleigh Dickinson University MFA in creative writing programs, and reviews books for USA Today. Visit him online at www.eliotschrefer.com.
Julian Winters is the author of the IBPA Benjamin Franklin Gold Award-winning Running With Lions; the Junior Library Guild Selections How to Be Remy Cameron and The Summer of Everything; the multi-starred Right Where I Left You; and As You Walk On By. A self-proclaimed comic book geek, Julian currently lives outside of Atlanta. He can usually be found swooning over rom-coms or watching the only two sports he can follow--volleyball and soccer.
Cam Montgomery (non-binary she/her) spends her time teaching dance to queer kids, bingeing anime, tending bar and writing romancey novels. Two of her YA novels--HOME AND AWAY and BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY--are available now. Having ditched LA, the transplant now lives in Seattle and has made a habit of complaining about the weather even though she secretly loves it.
Born and raised in the DC Metro Area, Kosoko Jackson has spent 6+ years working in digital communications; which enables his Twitter obsession. When not searching for an extra hour in the day, he can be found obsessing over movies or drinking his (umpteenth) iced London Fog. He is the author of Survive the Dome and Yesterday is History. Visit him at kosokojackson.com.
Saundra Mitchell has been a phone psychic, a car salesperson, a denture deliverer, and a layout waxer. The author of eighteen books for tweens and teens, Mitchell has written work that includes Edgar Award nominee Shadowed Summer, The Vespertine series, and Indiana Author Award Winner and Lambda Nominee All the Things We Do in the Dark, as well as the Camp Murderface series with Josh Berk. She is the editor of four anthologies: Defy the Dark, All Out, Out Now, and Out There.