Writers' Workshop Speakers

Featured at the February 14 Writers Workshop

The 2020 Amelia Island Book Festival Writers' Workshop is a popular event for writers at all levels. Through partnership with the Florida Authors & Publishers Association, the speakers represent a wide array of professional experience in the writing and publishing field.

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Author, Humorist

A native of Massachusetts, Assanti comes from a radio and stand-up comedy background. She has written three humorous books and also writes about things that aren’t funny—most notably her real-life, nonfiction, cancer journal. Angelina uses her sense of humor and outgoing personality to market and sell her books. She is the immediate past president of the Florida Authors and Publishers Association. 


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Author, Speaker

A professional writer since 1980, Ballo is an award-winning author and popular national speaker. Rich has a B.S. in journalism and technical communications, and an MBA. He has written dozens of newspaper and magazine articles, authored six books, and is a partner in several small businesses including a publishing company.



NYT Best-Selling Author

Brown is the luncheon keynote speaker for the Writers' Workshop. She has published more than 75 novels and has upwards of 80 million copies of her books in print worldwide. Her work has been translated into 34 languages. Read her full bio here.

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Mystery Writer

Cohen writes the Bad Hair Day Mysteries, set in south Florida. Her instructional guide, Writing the Cozy Mystery, was nominated for an Agatha Award and won a Gold Medal in the 2019 FAPA President’s Book Awards. Titles in her 15-book mystery series have made the IMBA bestseller list, been selected by Suspense magazine as best cozy mystery, won a Readers’ Favorite Gold Medal, and earned first prize in the Chanticleer International Book Awards. She is also the author of eight romance novels. nancyjcohen.com

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Author, Professor

Hovis holds a PhD from the University of North Carolina and is a professor of English at the State University of New York in Oneonta. His novel, The Skin Artist, released in 2019, has been called “smooth-deep literary and fast-eddy suspenseful” by author Clyde Edgerton. Hovis’s stories and essays have appeared widely, most recently in The Carolina Quarterly, The Fourth River, and North Carolina Literary Review. 

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Author, Illustrator

An award-winning author and/or illustrator of more than a dozen children's books, Brassard Jefferson also created a workbook on marketing for indie authors. Currently the president of FAPA, she has been a bookstore owner, publisher, and graphic designer.



Author, Publisher

McCondichie exited the corporate world after 25 years peddling bulldozers around the globe, to pursue his true purpose: telling thrilling tales about our meandering journeys through life. He has a MA in fine arts and is the author of two novels, Lying for a Living, and The Parlor Girl’s Guide. Steve co-founded Southern Fried Karma, an Atlanta-based multimedia company, and oversees their publishing imprint, online magazine, pop-up bookstore, and film development company. www.stevemccondichie.com

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Publisher, Author, Illustrator

Smith owns Glass Onion Publishing, MyPubFund.com, and MyPubLab.com, providing service, support, and solutions for self-publishing authors. Jenn is also a member of the FAPA Board of Directors, an author, graphic illustrator, wife, mother, grandmother, and proud Geek Girl!