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Meet Your AWC24 Faculty

Author of a New York Times Best Crime Novel of the Year

Writing is a Process Faculty:

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Susan Furlong

Susan Furlong is the author of several mysteries including WHAT THEY DON'T KNOW and SHATTERED JUSTICE, a New York Times Best Crime Novel of the Year. She also contributes, under a pen name, to the New York Times bestselling Novel Idea series.


Her twelfth novel, THE KILLER'S WIFE, is now available. She resides in Illinois with her husband and children.

Learn more about Susan's work here.

Susan will lead sessions on character development, finding your crime genre, and participate in the "
Ask Me Anything" panel discussion AWC24.

Epic Fantasy and Historical Romance Novelist

Summer Hanford

With two decades of writing experience, Summer Hanford has authored and co-authored over 45 novels. Her work is available in English, Spanish, French, Italian, and German. She has been an Amazon Best Selling Author over a dozen times, earning that acclaim in multiple countries across four continents, and will be releasing the sixth book in her second Epic Fantasy Series this autumn.

Summer’s work spans a healthy mix of Indi Publishers both large and small, as well as self-publishing. She is a fulltime writer and has been for over a decade, but at various points in her career has been a cover artist, interior formatter, developmental editor, publicist, and writing instructor. Learn more about Summer's work here.

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Summer will lead a session on writing Romance and another on Science Fiction/Fantasy, and participate in the "Ask Me Anything" panel discussion at AWC24.

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Award Winning Fiction Writer and Novelist

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Sherry Robinson

Sherry Robinson, an award-winning American fiction writer, is the author of three novels, Blessed (2019) and Shadows Hold Their Breath (2022), and Echo Her Lovely Bones (2nd edition, 2022, with Foreword by New York Times best-selling author Silas House). She is the retired Vice Provost and Professor of English at Eastern Kentucky University, where she spent thirteen years specializing in American Literature before moving into administrative positions.

Robinson is a native of Lexington, Kentucky, where her desire to be an author was also born. Sherry has an MA from Eastern Kentucky University and a PhD from the University of Kentucky, both in English. Robinson spent two summers at the Hindman Settlement School’s Appalachian Writers Workshop under the mentorship of Silas House. She completed an MFA in creative writing from Eastern Kentucky University, Bluegrass Writers Studio, in 2021.

Learn more about Sherry and her work here.

Sherry will lead a session on revisions and participate in and participate in the "Ask Me Anything" panel discussion at AWC24.

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Political History Book Editor, Researcher, Author, Award Winning Journalist

Dr. Pam Parry

Dr. Pam Parry has been writing for more than 40 years. An award-winning journalist, she is a national scholar on media history, public relations, diversity, and presidential communications. She is the author of Eisenhower: The Public Relations President, and the immediate past editor of Journalism History – the nation’s oldest peer-reviewed journal on the subject.

Dr. Parry has appeared on C-SPAN, NPR and BBC Radio to discuss her research. She also has written one book on environmental science, co-edited two books on diversity, and is the lead co-editor of a book series on Women in American Political History, which has published seven titles with more books to be released in the near future. She holds four degrees, and previously was an accredited congressional correspondent, who also covered the White House and the U.S. Supreme Court. A professor and independent practitioner, Dr. Parry has written for The Baltimore Sun and for “The McLaughlin Group” television show. In 2016, the Kentucky Communication Association awarded her the Applegate Award for Excellence in Research. She is a former faculty member at Eastern Kentucky University.

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Pam will lead a session on

bringing historical to life and the

"Ask Me Anything" panel discussion, at AWC24.

Award Winning Writer for Stage and Screen, Cannes Film Festival Finalist

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Mark will lead a session on screenwriting and adaptation and will participate in the "Ask Me Anything" panel discussion, at AWC24.

Mark Daniels

Mark Daniels is an award-winning writer for stage and screen.  His very first screenplay was a top five finalist at the international WILDsound Screenwriting Festival in Toronto. 

Mark has had numerous screenplays optioned and purchased, including projects with Elaine Hendrix (THE PARENT TRAP), Darrin Henson (THE EXPRESS), Malcolm McDowell (A CLOCKWORK ORANGE) and Dean Cain (LOIS AND CLARK). 

Mark has been a top ten screenplay finalist at the Cannes Film Festival.  One of his recent projects, DECAY, is in financial development with the Robb Company in Los Angeles. 

In addition to writing, Mr. Daniels oversees a film career pathway for high school students at Corbin Independent Schools, and he is also an instructor at Eastern Kentucky University in screenwriting and communications.

In his official role, Mark is the Principal at The Corbin School of Innovation, Director of Innovative Programs/Director of Pupil Personnel, and Bell-Knox-Whitley KY-ASAP Chairperson. He holds a B.A. in Communications, a B.S. in Education and an M.A. in Special Education and Rank I.

Mark is pictured here with actor Malcolm McDowell filming on location.

Writing is a Business Faculty:

President & CEO of the Law Firm Cole, Cole, Anderson & Newman

Frank K. Newman, J.D.

Frank K. Newman, J.D., is the President & CEO of the law firm Cole, Cole, Anderson & Newman, PSC. The firm is a recognized constant for coal miners and their families in the mountains of eastern Kentucky, Tennessee and Virginia since 1952, representing clients with occupational injuries, environmental hazard exposure, and occupational disability claims. Newman and his firm are regionally recognized for representing employees working in coal mining, coal-powered plants, and other coal-industry-related industries. The firm also represents individual and corporate clients in real estate acquisitions, transfers, and bankruptcy filings.

Since 2010, Frank has been drafting and negotiating book publishing contracts for Martin Sisters Publishing, an independent book publisher in Appalachian Kentucky. More recently, Frank has been drafting screenwriting contracts and has engaged in broader rights negotiations for authors who wish to adapt their books to film.

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Frank will lead a session on creative rights, legal considerations, and contracts -- including new information about AI and ownership, and will participate in the "Ask Me Anything" panel discussion at AWC24.

Creative Producer, and Author Branding & Marketing Expert

Gery Deer

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Gery will lead a session on treating your writing career like a business, building your author brand,  and participate in the "Ask Me Anything" panel discussion at AWC24.

Gery Deer grew up on a cattle farm in southwest Ohio and has a most unusual background. He is a freelance journalist, op-ed columnist, copywriter, editor, voiceover artist, master class leader, speaker, and publicist. As a freelance journalist since age 20, Gery (pronounced “Jerry”) has published thousands of feature stories and articles and three long-running syndicated newspaper columns. The most prominent, “Deer In Headlines,” was a hard-hitting, Pulitzer-nominated weekly op-ed series from 2008-2018. Gery revived the series by popular demand in January 2023, and it is published weekly by the AIM Media Midwest newspaper group. “Deer In Headlines II” takes a more personal, conversational approach and has already gained three award nominations.

After college, Gery’s professional life focused on computer programming and IT work, but he left the corporate grind in 1998. He needed to pursue his more creative side while capitalizing on his media experience and connections, so he started GLD Communications, a public relations media agency based in Jamestown, Ohio. The agency provides various media services, from copywriting and newswire stories to audio-video production and business coaching. Among the many industries he serves, Gery works with authors and publishers as a developmental editor, publishing consulting, and marketing and business coach.

In addition to his journalism achievements, Gery has won several advertising awards for copywriting and creative direction. He is a member of the Editorial Freelancers Association, the Authors Guild, the National Society of Newspaper Columnists, and Business Networking International (BNI). He volunteers to support literacy programs through Reading is Fundamental (RIF) and serves on the board of directors of the Miami Valley Nonprofit Coalition. Gery is also the co-host and producer of the Old Nerd in the Gym Fitness Podcast, a program for family caregivers, and the business podcast, 3-2-1 PROFIT$. For more information, follow Gery’s official social media pages and visit

Writing is Rewarding Faculty:

Appy Inkwell Awards Coordinator, Writer, and English Literature Instructor

Mary Ryan Wineberg

Mary Ryan Wineberg is the Martin Sisters Writing Competition Coordinator and an events facilitator for the Appalachian Writer's Conference. She holds a Master’s degree in English Literature and teaches composition at the University of Dayton. She has been published in Flights, Better than Starbucks and The Oakwood Register. She lives in Dayton, Ohio with her husband, four children and two baby boy dogs. She loves to be with people and help them grow creativity.

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Ryan is the coordinator for the Appy Inkwell Awards for the Appalachian Writer's Conference. She will also host a writer's colla