Board of Experts
Laura Pennington Briggs
The Business of Writing Expert
Laura Pennington Briggs is the founder and CEO of the Freelance Coach. A two-time TEDx speaker on how freelancing is changing the economy and the host of the weekly Advanced Freelancing podcast, Laura has helped over 15,000 freelancers start and scale their business. She’s an expert on systems, project and client management, marketing a solopreneur business, delegating to team members, retainers, and developing multiple income streams for writers of all stripes. Laura is the author of five books, including the Six Figure Freelancer and How to Start Your Own Freelance Writing Business. She’s also the founder of Operation Freelance, a national nonprofit providing free entrepreneurship training to military spouses worldwide.
Suzanne Lynn Cheesman
The Media Interviews Expert
Suzanne Lynn Cheesman has been in radio for the last 25 years, in New Jersey, South Dakota, Minnesota, Missouri, and Florida as well as having hosted her own nationally syndicated show. She now runs a digital media company that helps authors sell more books and build their brand with video and radio interviews. She currently hosts the Triangle Spotlight radio show on WQBQ 1410-AM, a Central Florida radio station that has a coverage area of half a million people. On this show, you can hear authors from around the country and around the world share their heart behind the writing of their books.
The Branding and Marketing Expert
Stephen ("Steve") Colwell is the founder of Clarify Media and Completing, one specializing in marketing & brand strategy for B2B & B2C firms; the other focused on growth operations training and consulting for teams seeking more scalable ways of operating. Stephen brings 15+ years experience leading high-performing creative, technical, and operations teams across the globe. A certified Agile practitioner & Fractional CMO, Steve helps teams of all types and sizes save time and accelerate growth by implementing the same proven methods and routines practiced by today’s top-performing companies. Steve has helped national and global brands in technology, healthcare, education, finance, consumer goods, travel, entertainment, blockchain and a number of other industries.
The Copyright & Permissions Expert
Mary Jo (“MJ”) Courchesne is the owner and principal consultant of Gryphon Publishing Consulting. A publishing veteran with more than 20 years of experience in trade, academic, and direct-response publishing, she has spent nearly two decades specializing in licensing, subsidiary rights, and permissions. MJ is a frequent and polished presenter on licensing and copyright. When it comes to intellectual property, she firmly believes that everyone from authors to publishers to corporations should know their rights. To that end, MJ has instructed on copyright and permissions in the George Washington University’s Masters in Publishing program for the last 15 years. She currently serves on the Board of Experts for the National Association of Independent Writers and Editors and is a member of the Independent Book Publishers Association and the Society of Children’s Books Writers and Illustrators. MJ has also held memberships with other publishing organizations such as the American Society of Picture Professionals and Washington Publishers.
The Novel Writing Expert
Nicole Evelina is a USA Today bestselling author and biographer who writes historical fiction, non-fiction, and women’s fiction. Her six books have won more than 40 awards, including four Book of the Year designations. Nicole was named Missouri’s Top Independent Author by Library Journal and Biblioboard as the winner of the Missouri Indie Author Project in 2018 and has been awarded the North Street Book Prize and the Sarton Women’s Book Award. One of her novels, Madame Presidentess, was previously optioned for film. She also has four non-fiction books due to be published from 2022–2024.
The Journalism Expert
Kristen Fischer is a copywriter and journalist living at the Jersey Shore. She worked as a reporter and copyeditor for Gannett before launching her full-time freelance business in 2005. Her work has been published in Parents, New Jersey Monthly, Prevention, Woman’s Day, SheKnows, and Healthline.
The Social Media Marketing Expert
Ashley Henyan is a digital marketing consultant, a freelance writer, and the communications director for the American Red Cross of the National Capital & Greater Chesapeake region. Previously, she held leadership roles in digital communications and media relations with the Red Cross in Los Angeles and Atlanta. Ashley has developed curriculum and trained hundreds of staff and volunteers across the United States in courses like Leveraging Your Story on LinkedIn and Social Media Story Telling. She has been invited to discuss social media marketing and brand visibility on various podcasts and with local and national associations. Ashley has played an integral part in award-winning social media campaigns including honorable mention recognition with the PR Daily Content Marketing Awards and numerous Silver Telly Awards for Branded Content. She holds a B.A. in government and politics from the University of Maryland and an M.A. in English and creative writing with a concentration in screenwriting from Southern New Hampshire University, and an MFA in creative writing from Southern New Hampshire University. Ashley’s work as a ghostwriter has appeared in national and international publications including Yahoo News, China Global Television Network, and The CEO Magazine.
The Research Paper Expert
Yateendra Joshi, has been copyediting scientific and technical documents for more than 30 years and helps researchers and academics get published in high-impact-factor journals. Certified as a master editor by the Board of Editors in the Life Sciences — only 30 editors worldwide have been thus recognized so far — and a former researcher himself, Yateen has taught full-semester courses on technical writing, has conducted more than 30 shorter training programs, and as many webinars from March 2020 to December 2021 on successful submissions to high-impact-factor journals. Yateen is a member of the editorial board of Information Design Journal, was elected for the second term (2021–2023) as a member of the council of the European Association of Science Editors, and is a professional member of the Chartered Institute of Editing and Proofreading. His book, Communicating in Style, was favorably reviewed by a dozen international journals and newsletters, and the late John le Carré called it “A gem. Courteous, unfrightening and essential. A perfect companion to Fowler’s A Dictionary of Modern English Usage for today’s communicators.”
The Freelance Expert
Jake Poinier made the leap into freelance writing and editing in 1999 after a decade of positions in the publishing industry, giving him key insights from both sides of the desk. As the founder and owner of Boomvang Creative Group, he has worked with a diverse array of Fortune 500 and small businesses, consumer and trade magazines, and independent authors. Jake is committed to helping freelancers improve their businesses and shares his knowledge and experiences frequently as a speaker at industry conferences, through webinars, and on his blog.
The Tax Expert
Kajli Prince ("Prince") has over 20 years of experience in small business tax preparation; he is a senior tax analyst and small business certified tax professional in the Centreville, Virginia, Block Advisors office. As a self-published author, Prince holds a special appreciation for NAIWE and its members. One of his passions is sharing relevant information with people and showing them how best to use it for their benefit. Prince is a small business owner of 25 years, and his specialties include emerging currencies (e.g., virtual/crypto currencies), information technology, intellectual property, and investment real estate.
The Public Relations and Book Marketing Expert
Marcia Rosen (aka M. Glenda Rosen) is the author of 10 books including the Dying To Be Beautiful Mystery Series, The Gourmet Gangster: Mysteries and Menus (which she wrote with her son Jory Rosen and was a 2021 New Mexico-Arizona Book Awards winner) and The Senior Sleuths. She is also the author of The Woman’s Business Therapist and award winning My Memoir Workbook. For 25 years, Marcia was owner of a successful national marketing and public relations agency and also facilitated numerous writing programs. She continues to work with aspiring author clients, providing manuscript reviews and advising them on book development and marketing, as well as writing articles, appearing on author blogs, and presenting writing programs on Zoom and in person. Marcia was co-presenter of “About Being an Author” for The National Steinbeck Center. She is a member of Sisters in Crime Albuquerque (2022 vice president), Southwest Writers, Women Writing the West, Central Coast Writers, New Mexico Book Association, Public Safety Writer’s Association, and National Association of Independent Writers and Editors—for which Marcia is also a current board member.
The Networking Expert
Ruth Thaler-Carter has been a full-time freelance writer, editor, proofreader, and desktop publisher for more than 30 years. She has been published locally, regionally, nationally, and internationally in, and does writing, editing and proofreading for, publications, associations, nonprofits, websites, service firms, and businesses. She sold her first freelance articles when she was still in high school. Often called the Queen of Networking, Ruth is active in about a dozen professional associations, serving as a newsletter editor, webmaster, publication author, speaker/presenter, blogger, program host or planner, and chapter leader. In 2006, Ruth launched the Communication Central “Be a Better Freelancer”® annual conference to help aspiring and established freelancers find greater success and connections with colleagues. Ruth is also owner and editor-in-chief of the An American Editor blog and owner of the A Flair for Writing publishing business. She received the Philip M. Stern Award of Washington (DC) Independent Writers for service to freelancers; the Writers and Books Big Pencil Award for teaching adults and contributions to the literary community; EFfie awards for writing, editing, and newsletters; and the APEX award for feature writing. She was also an IABC/DC Communicator of the Year.