Meet Our MARA Authors

Published Authors

Carla Cassidy
Carla Cassidy

Carla Cassidy is a NYTs bestselling author who has written more than 125 novels for Harlequin Books. She is listed on the Romance Writer's of America Honor Roll and has won numerous awards. Carla believes the only thing better than curling up with a good book to read is sitting down at the computer with a good story to write.

Linda Kay Moore

Author

S.D. Cook

S.D. Cook has always loved to read (mainly science fiction, history, and Stephen King), and was infected by the writing bug when she was 12. Her first novel, Whirlwind, was published in January 2021, and is “romantic suspense”. While classified as fiction, those who know her best know that parts of all her “projects” are true. She is finishing the rewrite of her second novel, with a 3rd and 4th “fermenting”. She has a BSBA in Accounting and an Associates Degree in Nursing. Laura Ingalls Wilder is an inspiration to her; she wasn’t published until she was 65.

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Val Fassnight
Val Fassnight

Val Fassnight is a self-published author of two short stories, writing in historical romance and contemporary romance genres. She has many projects in the fire. Val writes in Ancient Greece and Egypt, Medieval/Tudor England, Regency/Victorian England and 1920s America. She loves past fashions and teaches writing classes on history and historical fashions for other writing organizations. She is also a cosplayer and can often be found haunting comic conventions. A Beatlemaniac as well, she invariably will be heard humming “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” under her breath at any given moment.

Darlene Deluca
Darlene Deluca

Darlene Deluca writes contemporary romance and women’s fiction about people and their relationships – what brings them together or keeps them apart. Her books include a little bit of friendship, family, and romance. She currently has nine published novels. Reading has been Darlene’s favorite pastime since childhood. With a degree in Journalism, she started her career as a newspaper reporter. She writes day or night, whenever the words/mood/deadlines strike, and almost always has a cup of tea and a bit of dark chocolate nearby

Sarah Leyton
Sarah Leyton

Sarah is an award winning author of the Honorable Criminals and Chicago Sin series. She is a born and raised Kanas woman living in the KC area collecting a wide assortment of absolutely ridiculous novelty earrings, buying bulk packs of Dr. Pepper, and basking in the glow of Dolly Parton vibes.

DeAnna Talcott
DeAnna Talcott

As a third-grader, DeAnna Talcott started writing her first book in a one-room schoolhouse. While she never finished or published that book, she did go on to graduate from the University of Nebraska and subsequently published across the board, in newspapers, magazines, and book-length fiction. As the author of romcoms, paranormal fantasy, and romance, she sold sixteen books to Kensington, Harlequin/Silhouette, and New Concepts. From those works, she was the recipient of the National Readers’ Choice Award, The Booksellers’ Best, The HOLT Medallion, and the Write Touch Readers’ award. In 2013 she co-wrote and sold her first original screenplay, HATS OFF TO CHRISTMAS, which aired on the Hallmark Channel.

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Pre-Published Authors

Shayne Huxtable
Shayne Huxtable

Shayne Huxtable is a graduate of Washburn University, majored in Mass Media Electronics, and minored in History. Her love of historical romance began aged seventeen. Today she writes smoking hot medieval romance. She’s currently finishing up edits on her first manuscript. “The Dragon & The Viper”

Erin Mistarka

Erin Mistarka is a writer from KC who writes urban fantasy and paranormal romance. Developing a love for mysteries and the unknown at a young age, Erin devoured books, reading through both the school and public library. Before long, Erin began writing and started creative writing groups at both the local high school and college.

Jennifer Tarwater

Jennifer Tarwater writes contemporary romance, literary fiction, and is currently trying her hand at her first thriller/suspense novel. In her day job, she is an emergency manager which means all her books usually include some type of disaster – whether man-made or natural! She has fourteen books started in some capacity, with three that are optimistically close to being finished.

S.E. Dillinger

Sara Dillinger has been pregnant for thirty years. After hard labor, she is about to give birth to a bouncing (or thudding) baby romance novel with a split timeline and/or time travel involved. She types with one hand because she always has a cat or two on her lap