Mandi Stanley With more than 16 years of experience on the seminar circuit,
Certified Speaking Professional Mandi Stanley works primarily with business leaders who
want to boost their professional image and with people who want to be better speakers
and writers.  She has traveled throughout North America entertaining and educating more
than 34,000 seminar participants, totaling 3800 platform hours. Some of her repeat clients
include: Campbell’s Soup Company, the United States Air Force, Kimberly-Clark’s World
Headquarters, Mississippi Bankers Association, McDonald’s Corporation, Godiva
Chocolate, The Rockefeller University and the National Football League  (that’s right—the
NFL!) In 2003, she was designated a Certified Speaking Professional by the National
Speakers Association. Fewer than 9 percent of all worldwide speakers have earned this
designation, and Mandi is the first Mississippian to receive this honor. She’s a summa cum
laude graduate with concentrations in English, communications, and management, and the
author of The No-Panic Plan for Presenters: An A-to-Z Checklist for Speaking Confidently
and Compellingly Anywhere, Anytime released by Pecan Row Press in February, 2011.
Mandi has served on the faculty of the American Management Association, where she
received the coveted Quality Award and first-place ranking in market share. Audiences
appreciate her platform enthusiasm, interactive style, and content-rich messages. She
designs every presentation to help her audiences get their messages across with the
results they want.  You’ll laugh!  You’ll learn!  You’ll leave with your “Hair-On-Fire!”
C. Hope Clark is author of A Lowcountry Bribe, the first of the new Palmetto
State Mystery Series published by Bell Bridge Books out of Memphis. Hope lives on the
bank of Lake Murray near Chapin, SC, where she not only pens mysteries, but she also
manages FundsforWriters.com . The website has received the honor of being selected
for 101 Best Websites for Writers, an annual selection by Writer's Digest Magazine, for
the past 12 years running. Her newsletters aid writers in finding grants, contests,
markets and publishers for their work, and Hope's newsletters reach 42,000 readers
each week. She's also published in Writer's Digest, The Writer Magazine, TURF
Magazine, Landscape Management, Voices of Youth Advocates (VOYA), numerous
Chicken Soup and many more online and print publications. She speaks at writers
conferences throughout the United States and is recognized as an expert in the
freelance writing business. Read more about Hope in her blog, on Twitter, in Facebook as
well as the newsletters available at
Funds for Writer or her Website
Evan Guilford-Blake writes plays, fiction, creative non-fiction and poetry for
adults and children. He is the author of about 40 plays which have been produced
internationally; 20 are published by Playscripts, Eldridge, YouthPLAYs, Next Stage and others.
He has won 36 playwriting competitions, including, twice, the New Orleans Literary
Festival/Tennessee Williams and the Tallahatchie RiverFest contests (the only playwright to
have done so), Ireland’s Eamon Keane Award, the Richmond (VA) Firehouse Festival of New
Plays, the Saints and Sinners Competition and the Aurand Harris/NETC award. A Pushcart Prize
nominee, Evan’s stories and poems have appeared in numerous print and online journals, as
well as in several anthologies. Among his dozen short fiction awards are Soundings Review’s
Founder’s Award, Wayne State University’s Judith Siegal Pearson Award and the Porter
Fleming prize. Evan is a member of the Dramatists Guild and the Alliance of Los Angeles
Playwrights, and is a “Distinguished Resident Playwright Emeritus” at Chicago Dramatists. He
has presented playwriting workshops at numerous venues including the American College
Theatre Festival and the Georgia Theatre Conference. He and his wife (and inspiration),
freelance writer and jewelry designer Roxanna Guilford-Blake, live in the Atlanta area with their
two lovable, dumb-as-dirt doves, Quill and Gabriella and their equally lovable, smart-as-a-whip
spitz/terrier mix Winnie Words.. More information is available at www.guilford-blake.com/evan.
Author/Illustrator Chuck Galey has illustrated for
book publishers, magazines, advertising and design firms nationwide. He has
served adjunct instructor for the course on Illustration at Mississippi State
Department of Art and is a Mississippi Arts Commission Teaching Artist. He
won the 2003 Mississippi Library Association’s special award for illustration
in Children’s Literature for Jazz Cats, 2002 Children’s Book Council Children’s
Choice Award for Jazz Cats, and the 2003 Children’s Book Council Children’s
Choice Award for My Brother Dan’s Delicious. His presentations throughout
the nation include the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators
Southern Breeze, Birmingham, AL; Georgia Reading Assocaation, Atlanta, GA;
the University of Southern Mississippi’s Children’s Book Festival, Hattiesburg,
MS; SCBWI North-Central California Regional Fall Conference and much
Kathryn Lay is the author of 20 books for children including
CROWN ME!, middle grade novel, winner of Texas State Reading
Association Golden Spur Award and Oklahoma Writer’s Trophy Award
for Best Children’s Novel, republished in paperback with Scholastic
Book Clubs; JOSH’S HALLOWEEN PUMPKIN, picture book; WENDY’S
WEATHER WARRIOR series, 6 book chapter books for educational
publisher, 4 Classic Adaptations (WIZARD OF OZ, LITTLE WOMEN, WAR
nonfiction picture book series coming out September 2012, SENSING
WRITER in paperback, e-book and kindle. Kathryn has had over 2000
articles, essays, and stories published in magazines and anthologies for
children and adults including: 8 Chicken Soup books, 12 Guideposts
anthologies, Woman’s World, Family Circle, Kiwanis, Highlights for
Children, Cricket, Spider, Pockets, and many more.  She teaches 3
writing courses at Coffeehouseforwriters.com and is the new Magazine
Expert Guide for Children’s Book Insider magazine and website.
Rochelle Melander is an author, speaker, and professional
coach with more than 20 years of publishing experience. She is the
bestselling author of ten commercially published books, hundreds of
articles, and many educational resources including the new book to help
fiction and nonfiction writers to write fast: Write-A-Thon: Write Your Book
in 26 Days (And Live to Tell About It,) (Writer's Digest Books, October
2011). Melander teaches professionals how to get published, establish
credibility, and navigate the new world of social media.
Julie Cantrell is a New York Times and USA Today Bestselling
author. She was the editor-in-chief of the Southern Literary Review. She
has been a freelance writer for ten years and has published two children’
s books. She has contributed to more than a dozen books, and her first
novel, Into the Free, hit shelves February 1, 2012 (David C Cook).   In
addition to writing the sequel to that novel, Julie was honored to receive
the 2011 Mississippi Arts Commission Literary Artist Fellowship and is
currently working on a creative nonfiction book about her family’s
adventures as first-generation farmers. Julie and her family live in
Oxford, Mississippi where they operate Valley House Farm. She is also a
certified speech-language pathologist and currently teaches English as
a second language to elementary students.  Julie is represented by Greg
Johnson of WordServe Literary.