by Max LoSardo and Sam Florsheim
As 2020 comes to a close, here are some recent and upcoming releases from a variety of bloomers…
Denny S. Bryce is an author of historical fiction who lives in Savannah, Georgia — her debut novel, Wild Women and the Blues, will be available in stores on March 30th, 2021, from Kensington Books. Despite this being her first novel, Bryce boasts a wide ranging career in writing and publishing, as well as many other creative fields — she is a former professional dancer, and has also spent two decades running a marketing and event management firm.
Wild Women and the Blues is set in Jazz-age Chicago — the narrative follows the lives of a chorus girl filled with ambition and a modern-day film student who both struggle with loss and the complexities of the human experience. Early reviews highlight Bryce’s writing as “witty,” “emotional,” and “constantly surprising.”
Bryce’s complex variety of interests has given her the ability to write original and multidimensional fiction, grappling with themes such as identity, grief, and the impact of history on the modern day.
In addition to being a Romance Writers of America Golden Heart winner, Bryce writes reviews and articles for publications such as NPR and FROLIC Media. She is a devoted fan of many TV series including Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Firefly.
A prolific writer of short fiction, Angela Buck’s debut collection of stories, Horses Dream of Money, is a dark and humorous collection of stories that dabbles in horror. Whether it’s a story about a romance for hire, the extinction of human life on Earth, or worker bears, Horses Dream of Money is a series of inventive tales. It will be published on February 23, 2021, by the University of Alabama Press.
Horses Dream of Money was a finalist for the AWP Grace Paley Prize for Short Fiction. Her stories have appeared in Fairy Tale Review, Black Scat Review, The Champagne Room, Unbroken, Juked, Western Humanities Review, Mid-American Review, Gobshite Quarterly, and anthologized in Modern Grimmoire: Contemporary Fairy Tales, Fables and Folklore.
Buck holds an MFA in Poetry from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and a PhD in English from the University of Denver. She is Assistant Professor of English at Capital University in Ohio.
It is impossible to narrow Vivian Gibson’s artistry into one word. Short story writer, playwright, essayist, designer, and businesswoman are all talents that make up the tapestry of her career.
Her new memoir, The Last Children of Mill Creek (Belt Publishing, 2020), looks at her upbringing and childhood home of Mill Creek, a segregated African American community in St. Louis. She chronicles her youth with her large family in a tight-knit community. A memoir about survival through the viewpoint of an observant young girl, Gibson’s book tells you everything you need to know about a place through its people.
Gibson was a contributing playwright to 50in50’s series “Writing Women into Existence” (2017); her short story “Sunup to Sundown” was published in The St. Louis Anthology in 2019 (Belt Publishing); and an excerpt of her new memoir entitled My Father’s Accident was published in Plough Quarterly Magazine (2020).
After earning her AFA degree in Apparel Design from the Fashion Institute of Technology, Gibson graduated from Washington University in St. Louis with a Masters in Nonprofit Management and was honored as a Most Outstanding Student at the age of 63 — a bloomer in multiple ways.
Over the past eighteen years, there has been a permanent exhibit in the Reflections Gallery at the Missouri History Museum in Forest Park, titled “The Ross Family,” which depicts her childhood home. Gibson still resides near her hometown, less than a mile away from Mill Creek Valley.
Gibson’s memoir is not only a personal history of her family and upbringing, but as Ryan Schuessler writes in The St. Louis Anthology, a “[firm] reminder of what exactly is lost during the slow march towards ‘progress.'”
Born in Bryn Mawr in 1978, Claire Holroyde is a writer and graphic designer currently living just outside of Philadelphia. Her debut novel, The Effort, is set to be published January 12th, 2021, by Grand Central Publishing.
The Effort is a speculative novel and its plot centers around people from all across the world uniting to prevent a global catastrophe — a comet hurtling towards Earth — from wiping out humanity. David Heska Wanbli Heiden, author of Winter Counts, describes Holroyde’s writing as “provocative,” “fully imagined,” and “heart pounding.”
Holroyde has had short fiction published in numerous formats and by numerous publications, including Akashic Books, The Bees Are Dead, Born Magazine, and others. The Effort is her first full-length work from a major publisher. Aside from creative writing, Claire devotes her energy to design, reading of contemporary fiction, and watching premiere television.
In an interview with Ehsaneh Sadr, A.H. Kim remembers having one of her stories read aloud by her middle school teacher, who then announced to the class that they had heard the words of a future author. Her teacher was right, and Kim has shown that the path to becoming an author is not one of destiny or predetermination, but of hard work and perseverance.
Kim’s first novel, A Good Family (Graydon House, 2020), focuses on the family of Beth Lindstrom after she is sent to prison. Her sister-in-law steps in to make sure her brother and nieces are protected. The San Francisco Chronicle writes that A Good Family is “cleverly written” and “lays bare what we all know to be true: that no family is perfect.”
Born in Seoul, South Korea, Kim immigrated to the US as a child. She attended Harvard College and Berkeley Law School, where she was an editor of the California Law Review. A practicing attorney, at the age of 47, Kim set out to have her first novel published by 50. After the novel was met with a lukewarm response from publishers, she began work on A Good Family, drawing inspiration from supporting her older brother and his children while his wife was serving time in Alderson Women’s Prison. Currently 55, she says that although she “missed [her] deadline by 5 years…8 years from dream to reality is pretty phenomenal.”
Sam Florsheim is a writer and barista from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, currently living in Brooklyn. He has worked for HBO and various online music publications. In addition to writing, his other pursuits include photography, graphic design, and post production. Instagram: @samflorsh Twitter: @samflorshei
Max LoSardo is a writer from and currently living in New York. He recently graduated from Skidmore College with a degree in English and is a producer at Soho Radio NYC. He enjoys writing and performing sketch comedy.
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