Meet the Staff

Alexis WrightAlexis Wright

Alexis grew up homeschooled, making her a nerd among nerds. The first science fiction book she read was The War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells, and this began a lifelong love affair with science fiction and fantasy. She taught herself Elvish when she was 14 and absolutely no one was impressed. Recently, she graduated from Michigan State University with her BA in Linguistics, which is marginally less unimpressive.

She makes her living as a violinist, and lives in Lansing, Michigan with her husband Dustin and her three pet axolotls Swarley, Pigazaki, and Professor P.J. Cornucopia. Her three favorite movies, in no particular order, are Edward Scissorhands, Blade Runner, and The Iron Giant.

Dan RuffoloDan Ruffolo

When Dan isn’t reading far too much genre fiction, or spending too much time playing games, reading forums and other highly nerdy pursuits, he lives the dream of owning his own book and game store. With his background in Philosophy and History, he takes his fantasy world-building and story cohesion very seriously. He hopes to one day return to school for a Masters Degree in Library Science and take up books as a full-time career. He joined The Speculative Post in 2013 because the only thing better than reading books is sharing and discussing them with like-minded people. He hopes that The Speculative Post is able to bring together as awesome a community of speculative fiction lovers as he knows it can.

Gayle CottrillGayle Cottrill

Gayle’s been reading and writing books since before she was in kindergarten, and her love of books, and the adventures they lead her on, has remained with her throughout her life. She recently graduated from UW-Madison with a journalism degree and worked with a Tor-Forge science fiction and fantasy editor for two years. Now, as Gayle explores new avenues and a new career path, she is ecstatic to join the staff of The Speculative Post and do a little bit of everything she loves. In what free time Gayle has, she fences (occasionally), keeps a personal blog, has an art and design website, and works as a freelance writer, editor, and designer. However, no matter what she does or where life takes her, her first love is and always will be books, in whatever form they takes.

Janea A. SchimmelJanea A. Schimmel

Janea is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of The Speculative Post. She's previously worked on the group Speculative Fiction blog The Ranting Dragon, as well as on her own personal blogs. She's currently enjoying the freedom of writing and editing full time, on The Speculative Post, the illusive novel, and freelance opportunities as she transitions from Lansing, MI to the Chicago area. In her previous life, she worked in an urban public library where she gathered rather too much fodder for stories.

Marnie PetersonMarnie Peterson

Marnie has been an avid reader of fantasy since the first time she read The Princess Bride in the sixth grade and fell hopelessly in love with it (she currently owns 10 different copies of it, to give you an idea of her ridiculous level of dedication). Her love of fantasy, and The Princess Bride, stayed with her on that inevitable ascension to adulthood, as did a strong appreciation of grammar and proper punctuation (and yes, she knows that's a little weird). Her love for editing really began in college when friends asked her to look over their essays, and she realized that this whole editing thing wasn't half bad at all. Marnie is honored to be a part of The Speculative Post as she is fortunate enough to be working with some very talented and dedicated people. She also can't think of much else she'd rather edit more than writing on Speculative Fiction. Definitely more fun than editing essays.

Matthew MalottMatthew Malott

Matt was raised by a pack of unusually sophisticated wild turkeys in the urban jungle of South Detroit (which sounds way cooler than Windsor, Ontario). Having been accepted into their ranks, he learned about the finer things in life such as music, board games, and biting the ever-loving crap out of pilgrims (the natural enemy of turkeys). When not avoiding deadly Thanksgiving cyborg hit squads, Matt read lots of classic science fiction and obsessively watched The X-Files. After Gillian Anderson awakened his budding pubescent hormones, Matt--now officially a man--reluctantly bid farewell to his turkey family and spent several years making a living in the renowned doughnut mines of Katmandu.

He now lives in Toronto, where his pursuits include law-studying, out-rocking, fiction-writing, and Sasquatch-trapping (don’t worry, if he does catch one, he’ll let it go).

Omar J. SakrOmar J. Sakr

Omar is an Australian writer and poet with a Masters in Creative Writing from the University of Sydney. He has published poetry on the ABC news website, with articles on the Sydney Morning Herald and Thought Catalog, and poetry forthcoming on Cordite Poetry Review as well as literary journal, Meanjin. He currently works as a Closed-Captioner for cable TV.

Omar’s love of fantasy began early. As an unruly, near illiterate boy, his stepfather bet him $10 he couldn’t sit still long enough to read a book. The book he chose was King Arthur and His Knights of the Round Table by Sir Roger Lancelyn Green. He has been lost, and found, in books ever since. (Note: ‘sir’ has been added to Mr. Green’s name because to Omar, he will always be a knight in shining armour.) It remains the most significant amount of money he’s ever won.

Wm Kent KovacWm Kent Kovac

Kent inherited a love of Science Fiction movies from his Dad, and a love of computers from his Grandfather and Mother. His path to adulthood took several twisting turns through music, theatre arts, microbiology, plant biology, and four universities. During this time he garnered a BFA, a BS, and an MS. Realizing that his true love was data, not science, and the wonderful things computers can do with it, Kent left the world of academia to work as a software engineer in the financial sector. He plans to use his background in big data to create a dynamic backend for The Speculative Post that will allow content and users to interact in new and unique ways.

He now lives in Lansing, MI where in his free time he blues dances, works on remodeling his house, searches out the perfect D&D group, and tries to convince his puppy that he is the master of the domain.