Meet the 2012 Weta Nichols Writing Contest Finalists

2012 Weta Nichols Writing Contest Finalists


Sherry Hedden is a lifelong resident of Springfield, Missouri and has been anavid reader of romance novels since her teens. She wrote her first romancemanuscript at age 20. In an effort to improve her skills, she joined Ozark Romance Authors. There shemet founder, Weta Nichols. She was inspired by Weta and other ORA memberswho shared her love of romance novels. While working on her second manuscript she became more active in ORA. Sherryheld the position of ORA secretary and then treasurer. She is currently workingon her next manuscript. On a personal note, Sherry enjoys traveling, photography, graphic art andgenealogy.


Award-winning multi-published author Tracy Garrett has always loved to disappear into the pages of a book. An accomplished musician, Tracy merged her need for creativity, love of history, and passion for reading when she began writing western historical romance. Her first novel was published in 2007. A member of Romance Writers of America, Tracy is serving on the RWA Board of Directors as the Region 2 Director, and is a member of Missouri Romance Writers of America (MORWA), Ozarks Romance Authors (ORA), and Dallas Area Romance Authors (DARA). Tracy resides in Missouri with her husband and their fuzzy pal, Wrigley.





Louisa Cornell is a retired opera singer living in the wilds of LA (Lower Alabama.) A three year stay in England as a child (Air Force Brat) began her lifelong addiction to all things British. An early introduction to the novels of Jane Austen during those same three years began an affair with the Regency which with time only seems to grow stronger. When not writing and researching her romance novels set in Regency England, she is forced to manage a bakery for the local Walmart. (It pays for little luxuries like food and living indoors.) What’s next? Published historical romance author, no matter how long it takes!


After a tour of duty in the U.S. Army, Woody P. Snow returned to major in music at College of The Ozarks and went on to write a major pop hit song in the 70s. Known mostly asa radio show host, he has also appeared as an actor on national TV and in movies. A multi award winning screenplay writer, he is now working on his third novel andplanning a new radio show, which will debut some time in July. He is married to Jackie Johnson and lives with their three dogs and four cats.



Young Adult

Amy DeLuca

Amy DeLuca was born in Mississippi and has lived in six states including Rhode Island, where she now enjoys the beautiful beaches for two months a year and good "writing weather" during the rest of it. She has been a radio DJ and a lead vocalist in a house band on Memphis' famed Beale Street, but mostly she’s been paid to write. Amy spent 13 years as a news anchor and reporter for television stations in Mississippi, Tennessee, California, and Rhode Island before retiring from writing true stories to focus on her  family and on making things up.



Cecily White, Psy.D. is a part-time university professor and full-time mom who loves messing with her characters’ lives. After surviving (barely) her childhood in New Orleans, she's gone on to work as hand model, GAP salesgirl, movie projectionist, psychotherapist, yoga instructor, dance choreographer, psych diagnostician, rock n’ roll drummer/singer, book reviewer and copy editor. . . none of which are as cool as writing novels. At current, she is a 2012 Golden Heart Finalist, and her debut trilogy, ANGEL ACADEMY will hit the bookshelves via Entangled Publishing next Summer, 2013.

Special skills include swearing in Klingon, taking down alien aggressors with her mind (or chopsticks), and killing spiders without getting schmutz on her shirt. Cecily currently lives in Springfield, Missouri with one husband, two children, and a schizophrenic yet well-mannered cat. When not singing back-up for her kids, she spends time creating new worlds and thinking up ways to make this one better. You can visit her at or tweet her @CecilyWhite.


Fran Young is new to writing, although she has no viable excuse for taking so long to record the constant chatter in her head. Fran was on the move early & has, for example, been through the Panama Canal ten times. Against their will, she whisked her family from their newly purchased home to years of teaching around the world as an international educator while raising two fine children (they've since voiced appreciation). Inordinately thrilled to find her letter to the editor included in Writer’s Digest, Fran has also written non-fiction articles & is currently working as a Reader/Editor for Hippocampus Magazine online. Bomber Babe is her first YA novel.


Jeanmarie Anaya is a YA fiction writer, attorney, and obsessive book lover. Her books are treated like royalty—corners of pages are seldom turned down, hardcover jackets are firmly attached, and paperbacks with accidental creases are properly lamented. Each night she trades her law journals for The Chicago Manual of Style and The Synonym Finder in the pursuit of having her own novels sit on her bookshelf (and yours) one day. She also recently earned a spot as a finalist in the San Diego RWA's 2012 Spring Into Romance Contest and the New Hampshire RWA's 2012 Query Quandary Contest.


Tif Johnson is a registered nurse by education, but a Jill of all trades out of pure necessity. When not writing, you will find her running, reading, and crafting, all the while chasing after her four wonderfully curious children. As a proud Army wife, this displaced Californian has found inspiration in every place she’s lived in, and in all of the adventures this nomadic life has brought her.  She currently lives in Northern Virginia with her clan along with their extraordinarily sweet Boxer-dog, Sugar.



Christine Canada is a speech language therapist by day and an aspiring author by night. She lives in IL with her wonderful husband, a twenty-five pound shih tzu, and a beagle/German shepherd who thinks shoes make the best chew toys. When she’s not writing, she can be found reading, playing Angry Birds, or shopping for replacement shoes.





Ginny Lynn is Georgia born with Alabama roots, so in essence, she’s related to herself. She specializes in edgy, quirky tales of southern vampires, wraiths, trolls, werewolves, witches, sirens and more. She loves making fully boned lacing corsets, eating cinnamon rolls, dancing to Nine Inch Nails, and wenching at the Renaissance fair in between work, writing, school, and family. No matter how many personas she has, she’s always a writer. She’s a firm believer in laughter being the best medicine and always carries a double dose with her. She loves books by Laurell K. Hamilton, Katie Macalister and anything by her Laptops and Lingerie blog site friends Maggie Montgomery and C.E. Hart.