Pee Dee Local Author Expo

Pee Dee Author Expo
December 3rd, 2022
9:30 am – 12:30 pm


The Doctors Bruce and Lee Foundation Library will hold its Pee Dee Author Expo on Saturday, December 3, 2022.  Admission is free to this in-person event, which takes place from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the Stukes Meeting Room.

The authors have been selected through an application process and offer works for sale in a variety of genres.

Sophia Alexander writes character-driven historical fiction that grips readers’ emotions and surprises them with unexpected twists. A Lowcountry native, she is the author of the Silk Trilogy. Its first installment, ‘Silk: Caroline’s Story’, has garnered a clutch of accolades: the IndieBRAG medallion; a Literary Titan Gold Book Award; finalist awards for the Shelf Unbound 2021 Best Indie Book Awards, the historical fiction category for the Next Generation Indie Book Awards 2021, the family saga category for the American Fiction Awards 2021, the historical category of the Book Excellence Awards, the ‘Regional Fiction: Southeast’ category in the National Indie Excellence Awards; and it was shortlisted for the Goethe Award 2021 by Chanticleer International. ‘Tapestry: A Lowcountry Rapunzel’, the second novel in the series, has also been honored with the IndieBRAG medallion, a Literary Titan Gold Book Award, and was named a finalist in the general fiction category of the Next Generation Indie Book Awards 2022 and in the Southern fiction category of the Readers’ Favorite Book Awards 2022. Her writing is inspired by historical facts, genealogical investigations, intuitive guesswork, and fanciful romanticizations. Sophia is a graduate of the College of Charleston and lives with her husband in Savannah, GA.

Yasmin Angoe is the Anthony-nominated author of the critically acclaimed thriller Her Name Is Knight, the first book in the Nena Knight series. She is a first-generation Ghanaian America and former English teacher. In 2020, she was the recipient of the Eleanor Taylor Bland Award for Emerging Writers of Color from Sisters in Crime. Her Name Is Knight was an Amazon Best Book of the Month for Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, and an Editor’s Pick. Yasmin’s work has received numerous recognitions, Best Of lists, and a Library Journal Starred Review. Her Name Is Knight has appeared in, POPSUGAR, Nerd Daily, the Washington Independent Review of Books, The Guardian, and other outlets. Her Name Is Knight received a Kirkus Review calling it, “A parable of reclaiming personal and tribal identity by seizing power at all costs”.


Dr. Joe Baroody is an ordained minister. From 1980-1994 he worked at McLeod Regional Medical Center as Director of Chaplaincy Services and with their outpatient counseling center (91-94). Since 1994 he has maintained a nonprofit pastoral counseling practice located at St. John’s Church (252 South Dargan St.). He is married with 2 children and 3 grandchildren.



Patricia Brandon is a winner of a Carrie McCray Memorial Literary Award (South Carolina Writers’ Association).

“I’m homegrown – raised, braised, and cured in a charcuterie of the Deep South, with the wonderful nuances of family, friends, and our famously fractured characters. One of only three girls in a host of boy cousins and two brothers, I learned to find my own way somewhere between southern belle and tomboy.”

So, I grew up, nurtured my own two girls, and did not write with any seriousness until I became faced with overnight paralysis from an extremely rare medical abnormality in 2014. Talk about a rude cessation of a physically active life! My very first book, a memoir, details the first year of that experience. Many have said it is incredibly inspirational. I’m still swimming – literally and figuratively – as the journey continues. I can’t stop now, either in the battle to beat paralysis, or the journey to create tales worth telling and reading!

David Brown resides in Florence, SC. His book Only Death: Tragedy in Williamsburg, is a historical-fiction novel based on an actual event that occurred in the counties of Williamsburg, Georgetown, and Charleston South Carolina, in the year 1870. It started out as a friendly competition between two former Confederate soldiers for the hand of a lovely young lady. Over time, the competition developed into a feud and progressed to the point where a challenge to a duel was issued. One of the young men was very intelligent and highly educated. The other was a simple farmer. The challenge led to the death of one of these young men. One was the writer’s great-grandfather. The writer was told this story over a half century ago by his grandfather. He feels that the story must be told so that others may learn what arrogance, obstinance, and vanity can lead to.

Sherman Carmichael, is a native of Hemingway, South Carolina who currently lives in Johnsonville, South Carolina. Carmichael has been dabbling into things that are best left alone like ghosts, UFOs, monsters and other strange and unusual things since the age of 18. He has seen, heard, and felt things that defy explanation. Carmichael has traveled throughout the United States including Roswell New Mexico visiting haunted and unusual locations. He has also traveled to Mexico and Central America researching the Mayan Ruins. He plans to continue visiting these unusual places for many years to come. Carmichael worked as a journalist for many years, 30 years as a photographer and 30 years in law enforcement and 12 years in the movie industry.


Walter B. Curry, Jr., Ed. D is a native of Orangeburg, South Carolina. Dr. Curry received a bachelor’s degree in political science from South Carolina State University, and has earned several graduate degrees in education, which includes a doctorate degree in Curriculum & Instruction from Argosy University, Sarasota. Dr. Curry has taught middle school social studies for five years and currently is an adjunct professor of education at Claflin University.

Dr. Curry is a member of several civic, historical, and professional organizations which includes: South Carolina Genealogical Society, South Carolina African American Chamber of Commerce, Aiken-Barnwell Genealogical Society,  Friends of the Aiken County Historical Museum, Aiken County Historical Society, Old Edgefield District Genealogical Society, African American Historical and Genealogical Society.  He is also a volunteer for the International African American Museum. As a volunteer, he coordinates outreach efforts to local stakeholders to solicit memberships and partnerships.

Nigel Fulmore-Smith lives in Florence, SC. He has a Bachelor of Arts in sociology with a specialization in African American studies. Nigel is currently working toward an Master’s of Divinity from the McAfee School of Theology at Mercer University in Atlanta, GA. He enjoys sports and poetry, and his passion is inspiring people. Nigel finds inspiration for his writing from the issues of the world and from God. His desire is to tell certain truths about his lived experiences through his poetry.



Georgia Gates is a former school teacher and information systems specialist. I’ve lived in states from one end of the U.S. to the other, but my husband and I chose to retire to South Carolina, lured by warm weather, family, and the friendly atmosphere of the state. I enjoy writing, reading, crafting, and visiting with our children and grandchildren. Currently I’ve completed eight books in my Baker Street Bistro Mysteries series.



Raised in the Carolinas Brent Hensley grew up hearing exciting and adventurous stories told by family members. Later in life Brent embellishes on these same stories to give birth to his first novel Still Standing: After the Bell. Brent lives in North Myrtle Beach and for years he has used the coastal low country area as a backdrop to many of his books. Formerly a radio personality and speaker, Brent enjoys entertaining people with his quick wit, dry humor and his unique ability of storytelling.

Since his first book, a historical fiction, Brent has turned his interest to murder mystery in the Connie Womack Mystery Series. All feature a wheelchair bound investigator who is asked to help solve a kidnapping crime in Charleston. These mysteries take the readers down throughout the low country of South Carolina as Connie seeks justice. From the outskirts of Beaufort along the coast, to the quaint small port city of Georgetown, and up into the busy tourist area of Myrtle Beach the Connie Womack mysteries are a dark and sinister tale of money, drugs, sex-trafficking and betrayal. All four books will keep you guessing what’s next in these four murder mystery thrillers.

In Brent’s latest book he steps away from the sinister and into the role of humorist in his novella of literary fiction called Relative Stranger: A Survival Guide in Housing In-laws. It’s a tale most of us can relate to. Brent has written several newspaper articles and is busy working on a collection of short stories as well.

Music teacher Sandra Howard enjoys using books in her music classes. When she needed to explain to her students why they would not be singing due to COVID, she decided a story would be the best way. This was the beginning of Taraji Sings. Her students have enjoyed meeting Taraji, Queenie, and the rest of the family as they look forward to the day they can sing together again. When Mrs. Howard is not teaching music to her students, she is directing her children’s choir and writing music for others to sing.



Becky Muth is a coffee addict who gives her readers fun escapes into sweet romance and romantic suspense books. She married her real-life firefighter hero, and they live in South Carolina with their adult sons and many pets. She loves interacting with readers on social media and in email. When she isn’t writing, Becky enjoys hanging out at the beach with her family and binge-watching Netflix with her golden retriever. She writes quirky cozy mysteries as R. A. Muth.



Patrick Riccards is the chief executive officer of the Driving Force Institute for Public Engagement, a national effort transforming the teaching and learning of American history and civics through provocative, relevant video content.

An award-winning author, he writes and tweets under the handle Eduflack. He is the author of the nationally recognized book, Dadprovement, that chronicles his experiences building a family through adoption. He is also the editor and contributing author of Why Kids Can’t Read: Continuing to Challenge the Status Quo in Education. Patrick regularly speaks on the intersections of education policy, research, and engagement and is the author or ghost author of work that has appeared in hundreds of publications, including USA Today, Washington Post, New York Times, and Education Week.

Patrick lives in Florence, SC with his wife, Jennifer, and children, Michael and Anna. For the past four years, he has volunteered his time as a coach for his daughter’s competitive cheer team, helping lead a squad of 19 tween girls to Nationals (and a top 10 finish) in December 2019. That experience is the foundation for his latest book, Dad in a Cheer Bow.

Jerry Jayden Rivers III is an energetic enthusiast who loves his family. He has written his premiere book on the SuperRivers which has inspired his family to live their best lives helping and supporting others. He has an affinity for defending what is right and therefore he stands against the villains who attack those he loves. He is a superhero in his own right always defending his little sister and telling others what is right and wrong. Jayden loves spending time watching the universe which developed his curiosity for the sciences. He has been inspired to start his own youtube channel in which you discover his love for our natural world.



Teresa Smith is a retired early childhood school teacher. She was in the classroom for over 34 years.

Today, she spends her time creating works of art in various mediums including pen & ink, pencil, oils, watercolors and also writes children’s’ books.

As a child she was always fascinated with drawing, painting and creating art that was unique. As a teacher, she used her artwork to capture the students’ attention and help them focus on the task at hand.

Teresa is a native of Mullins, South Carolina and currently resides in Florence with her Husband, Carl.

M B Spears was born in Florence in the old McLeod’s and grew up on a farm in Darlington County. Before becoming a fulltime writer, Beverly Spears taught full-time at Carolina, the University of Georgia, and Francis Marion. Her specialty was American literature, and she helped found the Journalism major at FMU, where she retired as Professor Emeritas. In the ’90s she had also been Editor of Pee Dee Magazine.



Dr. Louis Venters began teaching at Francis Marion in 2007. He is a co-author of the award-winning public history study “African Americans in Camden, South Carolina” (2006), No Jim Crow Church: The Origins of South Carolina’s Bahá’i Community (University Press of Florida, 2015) and A History of the Bahá’i Faith in South Carolina (The History Press, 2019). He is particularly interested in the history of race, religion, and social change in the United States, as well as issues of rural and urban planning and the intersection of cultural and environmental stewardship. A Pee Dee native, he has lived and traveled extensively in Africa, Central America, and Europe.



Synithia Williams has loved romance novels since reading her first one at the age of 13. It was only natural she would begin penning her own soon after. It wasn’t until 2010 that she began to actively pursue her dream of becoming a published author. She completed her first novel, You Can’t Plan Love, in the fall of 2010 and sold it to Crimson Romance in 2012.

Her novel Making it Real was a USA Today Happily Ever After blog 2015 Must Read Romance and A Malibu Kind of Romance a 2017 RITA finalist. Synithia has also written two books under the pseudonym Nita Brooks.

When she isn’t writing, she works on water quality issues for local government while balancing the needs of her husband and two sons.

Caleb Wygal
is the author of the award-winning and critically acclaimed Death on the Boardwalk: Book 1 of the Myrtle Beach Mystery Series. He is a member of the International Thriller Writers and Southeastern Writers Association, the author of seven novels, including the breakout hit, Death on the Boardwalk: Book 1 of the Myrtle Beach Mysteries.

Death on the Boardwalk won the 2021 Pinnacle Achievement Award for Best Mystery and was named by Women’s World Magazine as THE book to read when you come to Myrtle Beach (6/22).

His two Lucas Caine Adventure novels, Blackbeard’s Lost Treasure and The Search for the Fountain of Youth, were both Semi-Finalists for the Clive Cussler Adventure Awards Competition.

He is also a woodworker, occasional golfer, reacher of things on tall shelves, beach walker, shark tooth finder, and munchkin wrangler.

He is currently at work on the next book in the Myrtle Beach Mystery Series. He lives in Myrtle Beach with his wife and son (the munchkin).