Linda Boroff
grew up in Minneapolis and was transplanted to Los Angeles as a teenager. This transformed her from a timid, earnest and studious nerd to an outgoing, rebellious, and venturesome nerd. She graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, in English Literature and has been published in Epoch, Prism International, Cimarron Review, Artisan, and other print magazines. Online, her work has appeared in The Pedestal Magazine, In Posse Review, Eyeshot, Stirring, Zacatecas Review, Cyber Oasis, Starry Night Review, Fiction Warehouse, Pulse, and is upcoming in several others. An excerpt of her comic novel was a Chesterfield Film Writers Project 2001 semifinalist.

Thomas Brennan
has recent fiction appearing in Prima Materia (a journal for Hudson Valley writers), Berkeley Fiction Review, The Griffin, Aggrippina, and The Armchair Aesthete. His reference book, Writings on Writing, published by McFarland has been reprinted by Barnes and Noble. Like many writers, he is working on a novel. He thanks his fellow writers for encouragement and wisdom. He can be reached at
(email address updated 23 Sep 2006).

Sue Dormanen
lives in Santa Cruz, California, and recently completed a first novel, Old Sins, set during the deadly Loma Prieta earthquake. She works as the editor of an online news service and, like many of her characters, is wrestling with middle age. Of "Finishing First" she says, "This story came as a relief to me as it was one for the first things I wrote not based on my own life. Except that the opening scene is my recurring nightmare. And my older sister did teach me to read before I started school, for which I am still grateful." You may write to her at
(email address updated 08 Oct 2005).

James Francis
grew up in Warren, Ohio, but is a native Californian and lives in Palm Springs. He has published fiction and poetry in Zyzzyva and elsewhere, and is currently editing a poetry collection, "Coachella Valley Poetry," to be published this September. He is also a songwriter and musician whose songs have been heard on KXLU and KCRW in Los Angeles, and he was recently featured in the documentary film "Rock That Uke." His ukulele band recently performed in Palm Springs for the grand opening of the Modern Gallery, supporting a show of the work of Shag, the famous Tiki artist. You can find his music at under the name The Haoles, and you can write to him at

Gina Frangello
is the Executive Editor of the literary magazine Other Voices. Her short fiction has been published in more than a dozen literary venues including Chicago Reader, Prairie Schooner, two girls review, Fish Stories, American Literary Review, 13th Moon, and Hawaii Review. She was a 2002 recipient of an Illinois Arts Council Individual Fellowship for Prose, is a freelance book reviewer for the Chicago Tribune and has written several cover stories for the Chicago Reader. She has taught literature and creative writing at the University of IL-Chicago and Columbia College Chicago.

Gwendolyn Joyce Mintz
is a fiction writer and poet. Her work has appeared in various print and online journals; most recently in Poor Mojo's Almanac, Insolent Rudder, Outsider Ink, Fiction Warehouse, the-phone-book, Poetry Midwest, and Word Riot. She has work forthcoming in several other journals, as well as in two anthologies, "One Paycheck Away" from Main Street Rag Press and "Sudden Stories: A Mammoth Anthology of Minuscule Fiction. Mintz is currently a fiction assistant editior for Small Spiral Notebook. She raises turtles for fun and dreams of hearing B.B. King perform live. She can be reached at