Veteran Hollywood screenwriter David Sheffield graduated from Southern Miss in 1972. Sheffield’s comedy writing career began on “Saturday Night Life” in the early 80’s when he wrote primarily for actors Eddie Murphy and Joe Piscopo, including some of Murphy’s most memorable sketches such as Buckwheat, Mister Robinson’s Neighborhood, Gumby, and James Brown’s Celebrity Hot Tub. Beyond his “SNL” work, the 2008 MCJ Hall of Fame inductee is known for films such as “Coming to America,” “Boomerang” and “The Nutty Professor.”
Han Nolan won the National Book Award for her young adult novel Dancing on the Edge and was a finalist for Send Me Down a Miracle. Her other novels include If I Should Die Before I Wake, A Face in Every Window, Born Blue, When We Were Saints, A Summer of Kings, Crazy, and Pregnant Pause. Her work has been called “rough, raw, and riveting” as well as “deeply philosophical and psychologically complex,” and she tackles subjects ranging from possible religious miracles to teen pregnancy and mental illness with compassion, insight, and a touch of magical realism.
Irene Latham lives on a lake in rural Alabama. Winner of the 2016 ILA Lee Bennett Hopkins Promising Poet Award, she is the author of hundreds of poems and nearly twenty current and forthcoming poetry, fiction and picture books from publishers including Penguin Random House, Macmillan, Lerner, Charlesbridge, Boyd Mills and Kane. Her books have been recognized on state lists and honored by NEA, ALA, NCTE, SIBA, Junior Library Guild, Bank Street College and other organizations.
“There are darknesses in life and there are lights. You are one of the lights.” - Bram Stoker, Dracula
Melissa Carrigee is the owner of Brother Mockingbird, a small but progressive publishing house focusing on well-written stories and talented authors. Melissa began her publishing career as a literary agent. From there, she worked as a creative director on a children's book line for a publishing house. Combining the skills she gained in both positions, she launched Brother Mockingbird Publishing. Melissa's goal is to bridge the gap between publisher and author, forging a partnership beneficial to both parties. With a support staff created from publishing professionals she met throughout her career, Brother Mockingbird Publishing offers the author experience, professionalism, and integrity.
"My strength is an understanding of books from the author’s point of view, as well as the publisher's point of view. Communication, respect, and diligence are the keys for a successful relationship."
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