Current and Past Faculty

We've reached across the publishing industry to bring you incredible teachers with diverse backgrounds in both the children's and adult publishing markets. Each of the following authors, editors, and agents are each experts in their field and passionate about the elements of craft they teach:

Jon Maberry is a NY Times bestselling suspense novelist, five-time Bram Stoker Award winner, and comic book writer. His vampire apocalypse book series, V-WARS, was produced as a Netflix original series, starring Ian Somerhalder (LOST, VAMPIRE DIARIES). His other works include the Joe Ledger thrillers, Glimpse, the Rot & Ruin series, the Dead of Night series, The Wolfman, and X-Files Origins: Devil’s Advocate.

Greg Neri is the Coretta Scott King honor-winning author of Yummy: the Last Days of a Southside Shorty, and Ghetto Cowboy, which was made into the movie, Concrete Cowboy, starring Idris Elba, which debuted at #1 on Netflix. His books have been translated into multiple languages in over 25 countries. They include Tru & Nelle, Grand Theft Horse, Hello, I'm Johnny Cash, and Chess Rumble.

Janice Hardy is an award-winning author and the founder of Fiction University, a site dedicated to helping writers improve their craft. Her popular Foundations of Fiction series includes Plotting Your Novel: Ideas and Structure, a self-guided workshop for plotting a novel, the companion Plotting Your Novel Workbook, and the Revising Your Novel: First Draft to Finished Draft series. Her Skill Builders series includes Understanding Show, Don't Tell (And Really Getting It), and Understanding Conflict (And What It Really Means).

Lesa Cline-Ransome is the acclaimed author of numerous award-winning books. Her verse biography of Harriet Tubman, Before She Was Harriet received five starred reviews, was nominated for an NAACP image award, and received a Coretta Scott King Honor for Illustration. Her debut middle grade novel, Finding Langston, was the 2019 winner of the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction and received the Coretta Scott King Award Author Honor.

Henry H. Neff grew up outside Chicago before going off to Cornell University where he majored in history. He began his professional career as a consultant with McKinsey & Company before leaving the corporate life to teach at a San Francisco high school and write fantasy novels. His Tapestry series has been translated into 19 languages and his novel Imperium was Entertainment Weekly's Middle Grade Book of the Year. His writing classes consistently receive rave reviews.

After graduating from Emory University with a degree in English and linguistics, Michaela completed the Columbia Publishing Course. Their background in school and library marketing accounts for their strong interest in children’s literature, from picture books up through middle grade and young adult novels and graphic novels. In the adult fiction space, they are particularly seeking character-driven speculative fiction, sci-fi/fantasy, and other genre fiction that features historically underrepresented characters.

A long-time independent editor and story development guru whose client successes range from small press publications to major bestselling novels, Lorin has also worked behind the scenes as a ghostwriter on a variety of projects. Her work has received starred Kirkus reviews and glowing mentions in The New York Times. Her award-winning poetry, short fiction, and articles have appeared in well over one hundred periodicals, including dozens of prestigious literary journals and the bestselling French Quarter Fiction

Joyce Sweeney has worn a lot of hats. She is the author of fourteen novels for young adults, and two chapbooks of poetry. She created and managed a local theater company in South Florida for ten years, mentoring local playwrights, producing and directing their plays. For the past twenty-five years, she has taught creative writing, both in person and online, and has mentored over sixty of her students to traditional publishing contracts. She has edited countless manuscripts and will be the quintessential ‘editorial agent.’

Harold recently joined Kane Press as executive editor. Before that, he worked as an independent editor and publishing consultant, as an in-house editor with McGraw-Hill Education, Charlesbridge, and Orchard Books. He enjoys working with writers to develop skills that they will be able to use in the present and with future manuscripts. He founded and runs "The Purple Crayon," a respected web site with information about the children's publishing world at He wrote The Complete Idiot's Guide to Children's Book Publishing, now in its third edition. He also enjoys teaching, and he speaks and gives workshops through the Highlights Foundation and SCBWI's national and regional conferences. He developed a curriculum focusing on revision in partnership with Eileen Robinson. They offer online and in-person tutorials, webinars, retreats, and workshops.