Sabrina Jeffries - Keynote Speaker
At the tender age of twelve, Sabrina Jeffries (aka Deborah Martin and Deborah Nicholas) decided she wanted to be a romance writer. It took her eighteen more years to get there, during which she took a detour to get her Ph.D. in English Literature from Tulane University, but once she got the chance to write romances, she never looked back. She is now the award-winning author of thirty-three novels, four novellas and three short stories, including the last book of her Hellions of Halstead Hall series, A Lady Never Surrenders, and her upcoming holiday hardcover, ‘Twas the Night After Christmas. Her sexy and humorous historical romances routinely land on the New York Times and USA Today bestseller lists and have won numerous awards. She lives in Cary, North Carolina, with her husband and son.
Sarah S. G. Frantz is Associate Professor of English at Fayetteville State University in North Carolina, and President of the International Association for the Study of Popular Romance. She has published academic articles on Jane Austen, J. R. Ward, Suzanne Brockmann, Joey W. Hill, popular romance fiction and BDSM romance. She has co-edited (with Katharina Rennhak) Women Constructing Men: Female Novelists and Their Male Characters, 1750-2000 and (with Eric Murphy Selinger) New Perspectives on Popular Romance Fiction: Critical Essays (McFarland, 2012). She is also a freelance romance fiction editor and BDSM manuscript consultant at Alphabet Editing.
Laura Florand was born in Georgia, but the travel bug bit her early. After a Fulbright year in Tahiti, a semester in Spain, and backpacking solo everywhere from New Zealand to Greece, she ended up living in Paris, where she met and married her own handsome Frenchman. She is now a lecturer at Duke University and very dedicated to her research into French chocolate. Please visit her at www.lauraflorand.com or www.facebook.com/LauraFlorandAuthor.
Ms. Jenkins is the nation’s premier writer of African–American historical romance fiction and specializes in 19th century African American life. She has 30 published novels to date. She has received numerous awards, including: five Waldenbooks/Borders Group Best Sellers Awards; two Career Achievement Awards from Romantic Times Magazine; a Golden Pen Award from the Black Writer's Guild, and in 1999 was named one of the Top Fifty Favorite African-American writers of the 20th Century by AABLC, the nation's largest on-line African-American book club. She has also been featured in many national publications and speaks widely on both romance and 19th century African-American history. In 2004 Ms. Jenkins branched out into romantic suspense with the publication of Edge of Midnight. Bring on the Blessings, her first, faith-based, women’s fiction work, was published in 2009. The fourth book in the Blessings series: A Wish and A Prayer is on sale now.
New York Times bestselling author Virginia Kantra has written more than twenty-five books of contemporary romance, paranormal romance and romantic suspense. Her stories have earned numerous awards including Romance Writers of America's RITA Award and two National Readers' Choice Awards. She is the author of the popular Children of the Sea series and, most recently, Carolina Home, the first of her Dare Island novels set on North Carolina’s Outer Banks. Married to her college sweetheart and the mother of three children, Virginia makes her home in the Triangle. She is a firm believer in the strength of family, the importance of storytelling, and the power of love. Her favorite thing to make for dinner? Reservations. Find Virginia at http://virginiakantra.com & http://facebook.com/virginiakantrabooks