Jun 04

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Our Writers


Valentina Nesci

Editor in Chief

Valentina is a writer, journalist and editor who enjoys nursing creative works to life. She graduated from Stanford’s journalism Master of Arts in June 2011, after earning a B.A in Communication from the American University of Rome in 2010.

At Stanford, she contributed to  The Peninsula Press, the Bay Citizen and SFGate.com. If you are interested in learning more about Vale’s work in Italy, your best bet is to look for her articles on Italian Notebook. If, instead, you love Human Resources, you can check out her blog at Procter & Gamble.

In her free time, Vale likes to turn visions into reality, problems into opportunities and words into magic. Most recently, she worked at Uniiverse, a platform for collaborative living, where she is the City Manager of San Francisco. She is currently the Social Network Specialist of Janus Communcations & Movies.

Contact Info: vnesci@write-a-holic.com





Timothy Matias

Timothy is an active blogger who likes to tackle complex philosophical topics ranging from self awareness, the future, writing and the world we live in. An avid reader and curious soul, Timothy likes to challenge assumptions and question the status quo. You can find his work in The Epiphany Project Etherlust, Nspyraishn and Ego Engineering.

Contact Info: tmatias@write-a-holic.com

Pallav Agrawal

Pallav is a poet, writer and engineer hailing from India. He has moved to the Bay Area to pursue a master in structural engineering at Stanford, and spends many sleepless nights thinking about what to write next. Some of his best stories and poems are featured in his blog, The Voice In Your Head.

Contact Info: pagrawal@write-a-holic.com

Brent Cytron

Brent graduated with an associates in Radiological Science from Foothill College in 2008.  When he was a student, he used to write for Fremont Highschool’s newspaper “Phoenix.” Today, he relaxes by playing the piano and being the soul of the party – he is a DJ. Additionally, Brenton keeps fit by wrestling twice a week at the American Kickbox Academy. He has seen many interesting things working weekend graveyards for three years. The hospital taught him to love life and gave him a great sense of accomplishment.

Contact Info: brentcytron@yahoo.com

Piyush Kumar

Piyush is a master’s student in the school of computer science at Carnegie Mellon University. He obtained his undergraduate in Electrical Engineering from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. He has varied interests in areas like math, philosophy and spirituality. Eternally curios, he considers himself an autodidact in fields that are not related to his formal academic training. Piyush likes to write about the things that he observes in the world around him. During his lifetime, he would like to publish a collection of random thoughts, poetry and short stories in a book called “Observations of an ordinary mind.”

Contact Info: kuma0177@gmail.com

Kevin Van Zanten

Kevin van Zanten is a professional Web Developer based in Johannesburg, South Africa. He likes to read and enjoys writing as a hobby. His favorite author is China Mieville, whose work in the “weird fiction” genre serves as an inspiration for his own writing. Additionally, Kevin is an innomator – you can check his website to discover the definition of this mysterious word, and check out his work!

Contact Info: kevin@innomation.co.za

Austin Prey

Austin is a student at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire where he is a Government Major and Creative Writing Minor. When not hitting the books, he enjoys taking a break by skiing,  playing hockey, tennis or soccer and hanging out with friends. His favorite breakfast food is a tie between raisin bran crunch and cinnamon toast, though admittedly both can (and should) be enjoyed at all times.  His favorite authors are Thomas Pynchon, Robert Jordan, John Cheever, and Ken Kesey.

Contact Info: austin.prey@gmail.com

Nadeem Persico-Shammas

Nadeem is a student at the University of Michigan.

Mitchell Hamann

Mitchell is currently working on becoming a personal trainer after finishing his A.A.S in Network Development at Brown College in Mendota Heights, Minnesota. He loves to read, and enjoys writing as a hobby. His favorite authors are Jim Butcher, J.R.R Tolkien and George R.R Martin. When he is not reading or writing, he is in the gym.

Marc Evans

Marc Evans was the assistant editor for Write-A-Holic from June 2011 to June 2012. He is a composer and pianist based in the Bay Area who likes reading Winnie The Pooh and greatly enjoys when people read out loud to him.

Nik Martinak

Nik Martinak only refers to himself in the third person when writing annotated biographies about himself and when saying really obvious things. His life is so remarkably dull he turns to fiction to allegorically poke fun at it and the discontentment it creates. So, while reading any works by the notoriously ignored and profoundly silly Nik Martinak, know that, although you are looking at fiction, you very well may be reading a biography. If you want to read an excerpt of his new novel, as well as short stories, check out his website.

Jerome D. Oremland, M. D.

Dr. Oremland is a psychiatrist,  psychoanalyst and writer. He is the Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the University of California, San Francisco; Professor at The International Institute for Psychoanalytic Research, Rome, Italy; and Founder of the Center for Psychoanalytic Studies, San Francisco.


Michelangelo’s Sistine Ceiling: A Psychoanalytic Study of Creativity; The Origins and Psychodynamics of Creativity; A Psychoanalytic Perspective; Interpretation and

Interaction: Psychoanalysis or Psychotherapy?, and Death and the Fear of Finiteness in Hamlet. (In Press: The Man Who Killed Caravaggio).

Jenny Zhang

Jenny Zhang, also known by her pen name Phire Phoenix, is a Candian writer, artist and blogger. You can find her work in her website, which she calls her “online hide-out / project amalgamation / super-site.” Phire Phoenix is the pen-name she has been using ever since she started writing online. She likes to blog about everything that interests her, including social issues, technology, social media, literature, culture, and language. Phire also likes creative writing, and you can find her work both here and on her website.

Luke Geraghty

Luke Geraghty grew up in Worcester, England, with three brothers and one Mega Drive. After graduating from the University of York with a degree in Linguistics, Geraghty moved to Ballinamore, Ireland.

The epic fantasy Torrodil is his debut novel.

Connie M. Barrett

I was found beneath a cabbage leaf and raised as a human. By the time the error was discovered, I had acquired a large number of habits specific to that species. I am working to rid myself of many of them but have chosen to retain human language. This is either to humankind’s benefit or detriment. If you buy one of my books, you can decide for yourself. I love writing and am actually good for very little else except making lasagna and being a slave to cats. I excel at the latter. Big Dragons Don’t Cry is published. Book Two, Dance with Clouds, takes the reader to the world of air dragons and is in revision. The unnamed Book Three, about fire dragons and other desert creatures, is in an advanced state of gestation. Book Four, featuring earth dragons, is in progress. You can visit http://www.adragonsguide.com for updated information.

Dana Sitar

Dana Sitar is a freelance writer/editor/blogger in the San Francisco Bay Area, and author of the series This Artists’ Life and the upcoming The Mailee Stories. On her blog, Dana shares writing tips and anecdotes, as well as free weekly fiction.

Jason Benoit

Jason Benoit was born in Lewiston, ME and now lives in Wilmington, NC where he works as a house painter. Forced to quit school in ninth grade, he received his G.E.D in 2001. He is an avid reader and lists Stephen King and Tom Robbins among his favorite authors. His blog, Love Letters & Suicide Notes, contains short original fiction, an occasional rant, and personal memoirs about being a homeless teenager as well as stories about other hardships he has faced.

Barb E. Toscano

B.E. Toscano has been writing for as long as she can remember. Sometimes stories would just emerge out of her, other times it was just plain therapy. She studied Communications and English at the University of North Florida and is currently working on her Masters in Curriculum and Instruction at Pennsylvania University. After hr B.A., she took to the classroom to teach English and Reading and has been at it for 8 years, writing curriculm and fiction for adults and children along the way. She currently lives in Germany with her husband and son as she pursues writing full-time. If you want to read her writing, you can visit her website.

Serena Ledesma

I am just old enough to have lived through some of the most interesting decades of the 20th century, but young enough to still remember it all. I grew up in the deep south, where I attended Faulkner State College, then in my adult years I travelled across the US and Canada with my two daughters in tow. I gained a perspective on life that is only earned by the free-spirited and with a little bit of creativity and a lot of experience, I have plenty of material for my writing, which spans multiple genres.

My favorite authors are William Faulkner and Isabel Allende, among many others. I live in Florida with my husband and a menagerie of geriatric dogs. Even now, each day comes with another experience that leads to inspiration; the outlets for my creativity are numerous, and include sewing, painting, restoring vintage items, and of course, writing.


A lover of the written word, Saecha studied British Literature  at UC Santa Cruz with a focus on medieval poetry and narrative. She has always loved to write and has been encouraged by friends and family to pursue her talents whenever possible. She also has a great love of animals, which frequently comes through in her poetry, since she finds that the elegance and natural beauty of the Animal Kingdom far surpasses anything else she encounters. She spends a great deal of time playing with her cat, riding horses, exploring wild places, and indulging her creative side by crafting things with her hands.

Welcome our New Entry!

Brian Burton

Brian is a children’s book enthusiast. Having read literally thousands of children books, he has a tremendous understanding of this genre. Brian is also a full time blogger and source of excitement for childrensbookstore.com. You will find Brian’s musings both fun and informative.
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