Brooke Olsen Benton (Home of the Brave) would be lost without words. Although most of her work appears only in a speckled composition book that she calls her journal, her essays have been published in both the Segullah journal and blog, and the anthology The Mother In Me. She lives in the shadows of the Wasatch Mountains with her husband and their three children.
Melissa Dalton-Bradford (Early Harvest) took a BA in German and an MA in comparative literature from BYU, where she taught German, humanities, missionaries at the M.T.C., and students on BYU’s Study Abroad in Vienna, Austria (where she had been a missionary). Melissa, her husband, Randall, and their four children have lived primarily in Oslo and Paris and currently reside in Munich awaiting a move to Singapore. She loves learning languages, serving in the local church, offering her little family the big world, and writing about it all. Currently, she is finishing a grief anthology and a memoir of her firstborn, Parker.
Melonie Cannon (Water Nymph) received a BA in English and Italian literature, a Secondary Teaching Certificate, and her M.Ed at the University of Utah. She also attended a year at the Universita di Firenze, Italy. She is married to Dr. James Uhl and they are currently raising four spunky children. She loves to read, bake, dance, make jewelry, and write poems when the mood strikes.
Cheri Pray Earl (My Grief Observed) has taught literature and writing courses for the BYU Honors Program and English Department since 1993. She writes novels but has published creative non-fiction essays and academic articles as well. She and Carol Lynch-Williams organize the annual BYU Writing and Illustrating for Young Readers Workshop, now in its eleventh year. Cheri lives in Provo, Utah with her husband, Jeff; her three living sons—Sam, Joe, and Matt—are married and live in Utah, and her daughter, Madelyn, is serving a mission in Madagascar.
Lisa Meadows Garfield (Seasons; Summer 1999) is the mother of six and grandmother of four. She is the author of For Love of a Child: Stories of Adoption (Agate Lake Publishing, 2005), an award-winning poet, a music teacher, and an avid traveler. She lives on five forested acres in the Pacific Northwest with her family, and loves hiking, trees, strawberries and cream, and sitting in puddles of sun.
Sharlee Mullins Glenn (Dance With Them; White Thunder) lives in Pleasant Grove, Utah, with her husband and five children. She served a mission in Italy and has a BA and an MA from Brigham Young University, where she taught for a number of years. Her essays, stories, and poetry have appeared in journals as varied as The Southern Literary Journal, Women’s Studies, and Ladybug magazine. She is also a nationally published award-winning children’s book author. Besides reading and writing, Sharlee loves yoga, hiking, listening to great music (especially when it’s performed by her children), and playing with bubble wrap.
Angela Hallstrom (Christmas Card Photos; Turning Cartwheels) lives in South Jordan, Utah, with her husband and four children. She earned a BA in English from BYU and an MFA in fiction writing from Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota, and now teaches creative writing part-time for BYU. She is the author of a novel, Bound on Earth (Parables 2008), serves as co-editor of the literary magazine Irreantum, and edited an anthology of Mormon short stories, Dispensation: Latter-day Fiction (Zarahemla, 2009). She is grateful for a husband who likes to cook, kids who like to laugh, Diet Coke, TiVo, and her jetted tub.
Emily Halverson (A Doughy Heart and A Contrite Spirit), her husband, Jared, and their five young children reside just outside Nashville, Tennessee. Her essays have been appeared in several different journals and anthologies, and she is the co-editor of The Latter-day Saint Sacrament Speaker’s Resource Book (Leatherwood Press, 2008), and the compiling editor for Life-Changing Moments (Walnut Springs Press, 2009). Due to her obsessive love of nature and her fiery conversion to the gospel at nineteen, one sibling (of her ten) has dubbed her a conservative, born-again, orthodox Mormon hippie.
Nancy Harward (The Freakin’ Fifteens) grew up a few miles from Disneyland but has spent her adult life in more prosaic places, mostly east of the Mississippi. She holds a BA in humanities from BYU, but allowed imminent motherhood to distract her from completing a master’s degree at the University of Chicago. A singer as well as a freelance writer and editor, Nancy has performed her satirical songs for LDS audiences across the country. A few years ago, she retired as the mother of teenagers but added “mother-in-law” and, most recently, “grandmother” to her titles.
Courtney Kendrick (For the Welfare of Your Soul) lives in Provo, Utah with her husband, Christopher. She is an American with European tendencies, a housewife who spends most of her day at the computer, and a flighty soul who is nothing more than a homebody. Courtney served a mission to Canada, earned a degree in psychology from Utah Valley University, and taught gifted and talented classes at the elementary school level. Her blog is found at cjanerun.com.
Linda Hoffman Kimball (The Tale of His Tail; Haiku; Family Reunion at the Dude Ranch) grew up near Chicago, joined the Church during her years at Wellesley College, and earned an MFA from Boston University. Give her a pen, and she’ll either write or draw with it. Linda’s creative works appear in a variety of publications, including the picture book Come with Me on Halloween; essays on beliefnet.com; several books for LDS adults; and poetry in the Chicago Tribune, Cricket, and other magazines. She and her husband, Christian, live in Evanston, IL. They have three children who think they are grown.
Veronica Kingston (Storm and Sunshine) is the mother of four, but some days she feels like she has twice that many. In addition to her favorite job—her work at home—Veronica works part time in communications and volunteers when she can in her community. In her spare time, she enjoys reading and writing, but not so much arithmetic. She also loves rainy days, cricket song, and leaving the windows open every night until the temperature drops low enough for snow.
Michelle Lehnardt (Through a Glass, Darkly) is the mother of five gorgeous sons and one tiny wild princess. She searches for beauty through her camera lens and through writing. And when she gets writer’s or photographer’s block, she goes on a long run through the streets and canyons of Salt Lake City, Utah. Michelle contributes articles to newspapers and Church magazines but the only subject she wants to write about now is how much she misses her mother.
Emily Milner (Halloween Costume) has a BA in comparative literature from BYU. She served in the Ecuador Guayaquil South mission. A mother of three, Emily enjoys attempting yoga poses, reading YA fiction, and writing. She does crafts (including Halloween costumes) only under duress, and has a large box of unfinished Enrichment projects in her basement.
Shelah Mastny Miner (Herons and Hippos) fell in love with writing when she won a poetry contest in second grade. Over the last two and a half decades, she’s continued to write, pausing along the way to collect a BA (English) from BYU, an MA (American Culture Studies) from Washington University in St. Louis, a husband, and four kids. These days she blogs for Feminist Mormon Housewives, tries to talk herself into (or out of?) applying to go back to graduate school, runs the streets of Salt Lake City before the sun rises, and edits the features for Segullah.
Tracy McKay (Wonder) is raising her three children as a single-mama in Washington state, but she misses her native California coast with a palpable ache. Currently finishing her BAE in Education and starting her MA in Special Ed, she also had a career as a professional artist, world traveller, and Germanophile. Tracy loves thrift stores, old books, wooden toys, crisp linen, grapefruit, and her Macbook. Her blog can be found at dandelionmama.wordpress.com.
Melissa McQuarrie (Enough) spent her childhood in Emu Plains, Australia, where she roamed the bush and swam in the Nepean River every summer. She now lives in Provo, Utah with her husband; four children; and their dog, Daisy. She served a mission in Arequipa, Peru and has a BA and a master’s in English from Brigham Young University. She loves to read, write, roam her neighborhood as she walks the dog every morning, and dream about traveling to Europe.
Amy Nelson (Waters of Mormon) received her BA from USU and a certificate of completion from the School of the Arts in Utrecht, Netherlands. She is an accomplished violinist and pianist and plays in the Castle Valley Recorder Consort on alto and soprano recorders. Amy is eager to see increased effort in supporting special needs members and their families in the church setting. She would love to be involved in helping to organize and implement a structured program that would be specifically tailored toward people with special needs during the three-hour block.
Kathryn Paul (Into the Light) is the mother of three. She shared her love of teaching, writing, poetry, literature, speaking, and storytelling with her high school and college students for many years. She earned her BA and MA from BYU. She enjoys traveling, singing, learning Polish, and doing family history research.
Dalene R. Rowley (By the Tip of My Toe) is a transplant to Utah from the Willamette Valley of Oregon. She served in the Belgium Brussels Mission and graduated in English and French from BYU before settling down in Provo with her school-teacher husband to raise a family of kids and a few too many pets. In her other life she wants to be excellent at a number of things, but in this one she’s content to bake a mean sour cream lemon pie, keep most of the points on her quilt blocks in line, be a loyal friend, and aspire to moments of goodness as a wife and mother.
Andrea Pratt Rediske (Pardon Our Dust) is a full-time mother, part-time microbiology professor, and part-time triathlete. She has a BS and MS in microbiology from BYU and served a mission to Viña del Mar, Chile. She enjoys writing as a way to keep down the crazy and avoid doing the laundry. Several of her essays have been published on the Segullah blog. Andrea, her husband, Chris, and their three children reside in Orlando, Florida.
Angela Schultz (Note by Note) lives on two acres with her husband, six daughters, three dogs, and eighteen chickens. She has a bachelor’s degree in English and a master’s degree in social work from the University of Utah, and she spends her days homeschooling, gardening, freelance editing, and teaching college psychology. She loves hunting for frogs, watching sunsets, and eating fresh raspberries.
Cheri Schulzke (eleven; Between) survived BYU’s music undergrad and English master’s programs in a previous life. Now she keeps busy with her four kids—in high school, junior high, and two younger ones who homeschool. In her “spare” time, she reads as often as possible, writes occasionally, and plays piano even less (though she loves them all). Cheri enjoys hiking and being outdoors and is a sucker for great movies and gourmet food.
Allyson Smith (Evolution) now calls the Corn Belt home after thirty years in the mountainous west. She lives in South Bend, Indiana with her husband, Bryan, and their five children. An historian by training, she spends the bulk of her time writing non-history and trying to keep the home front intact.
Mary Ellen Robertson (Border Patrol) is a stepmother of four, ages twenty-three to sixteen. Initially, she approached step kid visits with June Cleaver-like zeal; her new standard is putting clean sheets on every bed before the kids arrive. She earned BAs in English and journalism from BYU and an MA in Women’s Studies in Religion from Claremont Graduate University. She team teaches gospel doctrine with her husband, Mike, in their central Ogden ward and works full time as the director of outreach and symposia for Sunstone Education Foundation in Salt Lake.
Lisa Ray Turner (Enjoying the Ride) started her writing career at eight, when she began writing novels about orphans in boarding schools. Many years later, after she received a bachelor’s degree in education and a master’s degree in music, her essays found their way to magazines. Lisa’s book (co-authored with Kimberly Field), The Denver Mint: 100 Years of Gangsters, Gold and Ghosts, was a finalist for the Colorado Book Award in 2008. Other published works include Pray Away Pounds; Mom’s Search for Sanity; The Twelve Disasters of Christmas; The Maybe Saint; and Mitt Romney: The Man, His Values, and His Vision. Lisa lives in Denver with her husband, and occasionally their three college-aged sons. She loves to read, hike the Colorado Rockies (except the really tall ones), and travel.
Kylie Nielson Turley (Tightrope Walking) graduated from BYU with her BA (Political Science) and MA (American Studies). She’s been a BYU Honors Writing instructor since 1997, a volunteer board member of the Association for Mormon Letters, a volunteer editor for Segullah, an assistant curator for a BYU Library Special Collections exhibit, a research historian for the LDS Smith Institute, and the editor of Insight Magazine. She enjoys writing about Utah and Mormon history, early LDS literature, and, of course, herself and her family, which includes five children.
Darlene Young (Holy Ground; Alex, 9; Patriarchal Blessing) juggles a husband, four sons, and a snobby cat in South Jordan, Utah. She jogs (very slowly), sings in a housewife choir at various assisted living centers, and tries not to eat the whole bag of truffles in one day. She serves as secretary for the Association for Mormon Letters and is in the process of returning to school for an MFA in poetry.