Ohio Author Profiles
Ohio has a rich literary heritage as well as some wonderful contemporary authors. Learn more about them here! You can sort by various categories and see who has participated in our annual book festival by using the category search on the left, or search by keyword (including partial author names) by using the search field on the right.
If you would like to know which Ohio authors and illustrators are available for school and library visits or workshops, visit our School & Library Visits page here.
We continue to add authors, so check back soon!
- You are searching within category(ies): 2023
Jean is in her 31st year of teaching and loves to make the seemingly difficult concepts in math much easier to understand. Her children’s book, Sit Down Little Prince! A math story about Carl Friedrich Gauss gives readers a little story, a little history and one really, big math trick! She earned a master’s degree in Math Education from Bank Street Graduate School in New York City and a bachelor’s degree in Secondary Education from The University of Akron in Ohio. Jean is a mother, grandmother, avid golfer as well as a writer, editor, and consultant for McGraw-Hill, Scholastic, and other educational publishers.
Wall Street Journal bestselling author Abby Collette loves a good mystery. She was born and raised in Cleveland, and it’s a mystery even to her why she hasn’t yet moved to a warmer place. As Abby Collette, she is the author of the Ice Cream Parlor mystery series, about a millennial MBA-holding granddaughter running a family-owned ice cream shop in Chagrin Falls, Ohio, and the upcoming Books & Biscuits mystery series, starring a set of fraternal twins who reunite and open a bookstore and soul food café. Writing as Abby L. Vandiver, she is the author of the Logan Dickerson Mysteries, featuring a second-generation archaeologist and a nonagenarian, as well as the Romaine Wilder Mysteries, pairing an East Texas medical examiner and her feisty, funeral-home-owning auntie as sleuths. Abby spends her time writing, facilitating writing workshops at local libraries and hanging out with her grandchildren, each of whom are her favorite. Find her website here: http://www.abbycollette.com
Renee Casteel Cook
Renee Casteel Cook is a lifelong ice cream lover and recovering advertising industry account executive turned freelance writer, always with a focus on food and beverage. To balance out all of her diligent “research,” Renee runs, both for exercise and to keep up with her three lovely little girls, ages six and two (yep, twins!), all in training to enjoy eating equally as much as their mother. Thankfully, Renee not only married into a last name befitting a food writer, but theman who came with it lives up to the title, as her husband, Jim, is the head chef of the house. A Chicago native now based in the heart of the “Heart of It All,” Renee embraced the diverse food scene in Columbus through her 2016 title The Columbus Food Truck Cookbook and is excited to expand to cities and small towns throughout the state in this guide to Ohio ice cream. reneecasteelcook.com
Shane W. Croston
Shane Croston is a native of Bellefontaine, Ohio. He is a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps and served as an anti-tank missileman with First Battalion, Eighth Marines. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in social studies from Dublin Business School (Dublin, Ireland). Shane’s interests include military history; traveling abroad; and the study of social and cultural dynamics in Europe, the Greater Middle East and the Appalachian region of America. As a descendant of Tony Vicario, Salvatore Cira and Agostino Iannarino, he is interested in Sicilian genealogy and history pertaining to the Black Hand.
Karin Cecile Davidson
Karin Cecile Davidson is the author of the novel Sybelia Drive (Braddock Avenue Books, 2020). Her story collection The Geography of First Kisses was awarded the 2022 Acacia Fiction Prize and is forthcoming from Kallisto Gaia Press in 2023. Her stories have appeared in Five Points, Story, The Massachusetts Review, Colorado Review, Passages North, Post Road, The Los Angeles Review, and elsewhere. Her awards include an Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Award, the Waasmode Short Fiction Prize, the Orlando Prize for Short Fiction, a Peter Taylor Fellowship, and residencies at the Fine Arts Work Center, the Atlantic Center for the Arts, and The Studios of Key West. Originally from New Orleans, Louisiana, she now lives in Columbus, Ohio. https://www.karinceciledavidson.com/
No less than Ken Burns has said, “Nobody gets Mark Twain the way Mark Dawidziak does.” The television critic at Cleveland’s Plain Dealer since 1999, Mark Dawidziak is the author of many books, including Mark My Words: Mark Twain on Writing, Horton Foote’s The Shape of the River: The Lost Teleplay About Mark Twain, Mark Twain in Ohio, and Mark Twain’s Guide Diet, Exercise, Beauty, Fashion, Investment, Romance, Health and Happiness. He has four times been the guest scholar at Elmira College’s Center for Mark Twain Studies.
In addition to being a recognized Twain scholar, he has been portraying Mark Twain on stage for 36 years. A television, film and theater critic for more than 37 years and an adjunct faculty professor at Kent State University since 2009, his other books include the 1994 horror novel Grave Secrets, The Bedside, Bathtub and Armchair Companion to Dracula, and two histories of landmark television series, The Columbo Phile, and The Night Stalker Companion. He and Paul J. Bauer are the co-authors of Jim Tully: American Writer, Irish Rover, Hollywood Brawler, the first full-length biography of the “hobo writer” from Ohio. Before joining the Plain Dealer, he spent 16 years at the Akron Beacon Journal, holding such posts as TV critic, film critic, and critic-at-large. https://www.markdawidziak.com/
Keila V. Dawson
Keila V. Dawson writes fiction and nonfiction picture books. She is coeditor of NO WORLD TOO BIG: YOUNG PEOPLE FIGHTING GLOBAL CLIMATE CHANGE and the companion title, NO VOICE TOO SMALL: FOURTEEN YOUNG AMERICANS MAKING HISTORY with Lindsay H. Metcalf and Jeanette Bradley, illustrated by Bradley. Dawson is the author of OPENING THE ROAD: VICTOR HUGO GREEN AND HIS GREEN BOOK, illustrated by Alleanna Harris, THE KING CAKE BABY, illustrated by Vernon Smith and the forthcoming YUMBO GUMBO, illustrated by Katie Crumpton. Awards and honors for her books include an International Reading Association Children’s Book Award, National Council of Social Studies and National Council of Teachers of English Notable book, a Kirkus star, featured on New York Public Library, Chicago Public Library, Bank Street, John F. Kennedy Library and Kirkus Best Books lists, a two-time Ohioana finalist, Jane Addams finalist, and a 2023 Charlotte Award nominee. A New Orleans native, Dawson has also lived and worked in states across the U.S., and in the Philippines, Japan, and Egypt. She lives in Cincinnati, Ohio. When she isn’t reading, writing, and visiting schools, Dawson is traveling, playing tennis, or digging in genealogical archives. Learn more about her at http://www.keiladawson.com, on Twitter @keila_dawson, or Instagram @keilavdawson.
Mark M. Dean
Mark M. Dean and his family live in Southeast Ohio on a small horse farm nestled into the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. His endeavors as an author, lyricist, and poet are fueled by childhood memories of many family tales and exploits regarding colorful characters in his clan. Mark has had the pleasure of living in ten states stretching from Rhode Island to Arizona while also having lived and traveled abroad. His 20 years of Military service involved 12 family moves which gave him keen insight into the importance of bonding through stories, songs and poems. Mark struggled with childhood dyslexia and desires to payback all those that helped him develop his imagination through reading and storytelling. He has both an Undergraduate Degree from Miami University and a Maser’s Degree from Ohio University.
Darren C. Demaree is the author of seventeen poetry collections, most recently “clawing at the grounded moon”, (April Gloaming, August 2022). He is the recipient of an Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Award, the Louise Bogan Award from Trio House Press, and the Nancy Dew Taylor Award from Emrys Journal. He is the Editor-in-Chief of the Best of the Net Anthology and the Managing Editor of Ovenbird Poetry. He is currently living in Columbus, Ohio with his wife and children. https://darrencdemaree.com/
Guy L. Denny
Guy L. Denny is a retired chief of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources’ Division of Natural Areas and Preserves. A former director of the Ohio Biological Survey, he is also a past president of the Ohio Natural Areas and Preserves Association.