About BWG

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The Bethlehem Writers Group, LLC (BWG), founded in 2006, is a community of mutually supportive authors based in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. The members are as different from each other as their stories, spanning a range of genres including: children’s, fantasy, humor, inspiration, literary, memoir, mystery, paranormal, romance, science fiction, women's fiction, and young adult.

BWG is also a publisher of quality fiction and poetry through the online literary journal, Bethlehem Writers Roundtable and award-winning "Sweet, Funny, and Strange" anthologies, among other publications. See our Bookstore for more information on our many titles.

Our members:

Courtney Annicchiarico grew up in New Jersey where she was a high school teacher and a conflict resolution curriulum writer and facilitator. She moved to Pennsylvania with her husband and two children to be a stay-at-home mom--the best career move yet. Her story "Mis-conceptions" appears in A Christmas Sampler, and is her first published piece. Her stories also appear in Once Around the Sun, A Readable Feast, Untethered, and Fur, Feathers, and Scales.
Growing up in Wisconsin and Connecticut, DT deserted aspirations of being a biologist to live the corporate dream and raise a family. After seven homes, a ten-year stint working in Asia, and an imagination that never slept, his muse refused to be hobbled as a mere dream. A member of the Bethlehem Writers Group and Greater Lehigh Valley Writers Group, DT writes apocalyptic science fiction, paranormal, and parallel universe science fantasy. DT has published several short stories. “Hell of a Deal”, in the paranormal collection, Untethered, and most recently, “Man’s Best Friend”, in the 2021 Best Indie Book for Fiction, Fur, Feathers, and Scales. He also appeared in the Write Here – Write Now short story collection with his middle-grade paranormal, “Locker 33C”. An active member of the Bethlehem Writers Group, he’s been a featured author in the BWG Writers Roundtable Magazine, and will appear in the July 2021 Summer Issue with “Hot as Sin”. His latest project is an apocalyptic tale of humans on the edge extinction, and a young man born years after surviving humans had been rendered sterile. You can find D.T. on his website, Searching for Light in the Darkness, and his social media links on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.
Jeff Baird is a career educator at the secondary and post graduate level, and a self-proclaimed computer junkie. He has presented at numerous state and national technology conferences, and has published in the field of educational technology. In addition, his memoir, Redhead Ruminations, tells about growing up and living life as a redhead. He resides in the Lehigh Valley of Pennsylvania where he loves hiking nearby mountains with his dog, Bailey.
Jerry McFadden has been writing fiction for the past several years. His stories have appeared in various fiction magazines and e-zines, such as Flash Fiction Offensive, Over My Dead Body, Eclectic Flash Fiction, and BWG Writers Roundtable. Many of his favorites are included in his book OFF THE RAILS: A Collection of Weird, Wicked, & Wacky Stories published in 2019. It placed as a finalist for both the 2020 Next Generation Indie Book Awards and the National Indie Excellence Awards. He received a Second Place Bullet Award for the best crime fiction to appear on the web in June, 2011, and has had his short stories performed aloud on the stage by the Liar’s League in London and the Liar’s League in Hong Kong. His stories have also appeared in various anthologies, including Hardboiled: Crime Scene, Once Around the Sun, A Christmas Sampler, A Readable Feast, and Let It Snow. He has also won honorable mentions in Writer’s Digest Magazine annual national fiction awards, as well as in several regional writing contests.
Pete Barbour has been writing stories for over 30 years. He published a memoir, Loose Ends, in 1987, and a number of short stories. Since retirement in 2015, his stories have appeared in Short-Story.me, StoryStar.com, Rue Scribe, Piker Press, ARTPOST magazine, the Starlit Path, and the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable. He wrote and illustrated three children’s books, Gus at Work (2016), Oscar and Gus (2019), and Tanya and the Baby Elephant (2021). His short story “Why Bats Live in Caves” appears in Fur, Feathers, & Scales, an anthology of sweet, funny, and strange animal tales (Bethlehem Writers Group, 2020). Links to his stories and illustrations can be found at his website.He loves the outdoors, and especially the Pacific Northwest, which serves as the setting for many of his stories. He is married, and likes to travel, which affords him the opportunity to absorb new experiences from which to write. Barbour attended the University of Pennsylvania as an undergraduate and Temple University School of Medicine where he earned his M.D. He completed his residency training in Neurology, at Stanford University School of Medicine and practiced medicine in the Lehigh Valley, retiring in 2015.He believes that what comes from the heart goes to the heart.
Emily P. W. Murphy is a writer, freelance editor, and professional photographer. Her short stories appear in A Christmas Sampler: Sweet, Funny, and Strange Holiday Tales, Once Around the Sun: Sweet, Funny, and Strange Tales for All Seasons, A Readable Feast: Sweet, Funny, and Strange Tales for Every Taste, Once Upon a Time: Sweet, Funny, and Strange Tales for All Ages, Untethered: Sweet, Funny, and Strange Tales of the Paranormal, and Fur, Feathers, and Scales: Sweet, Funny, and Strange Animal Tales, among other publications. After growing up in Pennsylvania, she has relocated to the Baltimore, MD area with her husband Adam, their two children, and their three cats. Visit Emily's website here.
Paula Gail Benson is a legislative attorney and former law librarian. Her short stories have been published in the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable, Kings River Life, Mystery Times Ten 2013 (Buddhapuss Ink), and A Tall Ship, a Star, and Plunder (Dark Oak Press and Media, released January 20, 2014). She regularly blogs with others about writing mysteries at Writers Who Kill. Learn more about her at her personal blog, Little Sources of Joy, and her website.


Christopher D. Ochs' foray into writing began with his epic fantasy Pindlebryth of Lenland. Along with several short stories published in the Greater Lehigh Valley Writers Group and Bethlehem Writers Group anthologies and websites, his collection of mirthful macabre short stories appears in If I Can't Sleep, You Can't Sleep. His urban fantasy, My Friend Jackson, is a Finalist in Indies Today's Best Books of 2020. And there's always at least one novel and four short stories bubbling in the cauldron.With previous careers in electrical engineering and software, and his incessant dabblings in CGI animation, music, voice talent on radio, DVD and Voice of OTAKON, it's a wonder he can remember to pay the dog and feed his bills. Wait, what?
A. E. Decker has been a member of the Bethlehem Writers Group since 2011. A former ESL tutor and doll-maker turned writer of fantasy, her short stories have appeared in such magazines as Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Fireside Magazine, and The Sockdolager as well as in the BWG's own anthology, Once Around the Sun, which she helped edit. Her YA novels in the Moonfall Mayhem series include The Falling of the Moon and The Meddlers of Moonshine, both from World Weaver Press. Like all writers, she is owned by three cats.
Dianna Sinovic writes fiction in her off-hours. She has been an editor for most of her career, and currently manages a team of writers and editors for a marketing company that focuses on healthcare information. She’s originally from Kansas City, Mo., but now lives in Upper Bucks County with her husband. When she’s not writing, you can find her hiking or paddling her kayak. In the realm of fiction, Dianna writes short stories and is working on a novel.
Debra Goldstein is a judge, author, litigator, wife, step-mom, mother of twins, and civic volunteer. Her writings are equally diverse. She is the author of Kensington Press’ Sarah Blair mystery series. Sarah, like Debra, is a cook of convenience who might be scorched if she gets too close to a kitchen. One Taste Too Many, the first book in the series was published in January 2019. The second book, Two Bites Too Many, was released in October 2019. The third book, Three Treats Too Many, came out in August 2020. She recently inked the deal for books four and five, which will appear in 2021 and 2022. Visit her website at: http://debragoldstein.com.
Diane Sismour lives with her husband at the foothills of the Blue Mountain range in Eastern Pennsylvania. When she's not checking guests into her Leaser Lake B and B, or supervising a cleaning crew at construction sites for Sismour's Janitorial Co., she's writing poetry, suspense, psychological horror and ​romantic comedy ​ short stories and novels. She is a member of Romance Writers of America, Liberty States Fiction Writers, the Horror Writers Association, and Bethlehem Writers Group LLC. Diane advocates helping others as those who have aided her along her journey by giving writing workshops, and as a motivational speaker for Women Owned Small Businesses.
Marianne H. Donley writes fiction from short stories to funny romances and quirky murder mysteries fueled by her life as a mom and a teacher. She makes her home in Tennessee with her husband, son, and a new puppy. Marianne blogs at A Slice of Orange. She’s also a member Romance Writers of America and Music City Romance Writers. You can follow her on Twitter @A_SliceofOrange and Facebook @AnOrangeSlice.
Kidd Wadsworth began her professional life as a PhD in Electrical Engineering, designing computer chips which passed electrical signals to living human cells. Craving a different type of creative expression, she chose to leave engineering and re-educate herself as a writer. Her first novel, Trident, Sam and Malloy, brings to life a concept she observed daily as an engineer: that the most brilliant scientists--those whose work sparkles--are those with fantastic imaginations. The greats of the scientific world draw pictures, they use crayons, they routinely get excited, they imagine and what they imagine becomes real. Kidd writes to bring to life our magical, fire-breathing world, the one we so often miss, where real people have super powers and fight evil villains. Visit Kidd's website.
Ralph Hieb enjoys reading and writing paranormal fiction. He resides in Bethlehem, PA, with his wife Nancy The couple enjoys travel and makes a point each year to take a trip to someplace they have never seen before. In addition to BWG, Ralph is a member of the Greater Lehigh Valley Writers Group where he has served as president and a member representative on the board of directors.
Paul Weidknecht is the author of Native to This Stream: Brief Writings About Fly-Fishing & the Great Outdoors, His work has also appeared in Oregon Literary Review, Clapboard House, Potomac Review (online), The Copperfield Review, Yale Anglers’ Journal, Stone’s Throw Magazine, The Oklahoma Review, Outdoor Life, and elsewhere. He has written a feature-length screenplay, A Storm In Season, about a former slave who became the first African-American war hero. He is currently at work on a novel. When not writing, he throws flies to wild trout and gets thrown to judo mats. He lives in Northwest New Jersey. Visit Paul's website.
Cindy Kelly is originally from upstate New York. She is a former teacher and the author of "Wishing Well Christmas" which appears in A Christmas Sampler.
Carol L. Wright is a former book editor, domestic relations attorney, and adjunct law professor. Her debut mystery, Death in Glenville Falls, came out in September of 2017 and was named a finalist for both the 2018 Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Award and for the 2018 Next Generation Indie Book Awards. It is the first of her Gracie McIntyre Mysteries. In addition to the new series, Carol is the author of several short stories in various literary journals and award-winning anthologies. Many of her favorites appear in A Christmas on Nantucket and other stories. She is a founding member of the Bethlehem Writers Group, a life member of Sisters in Crime and the Jane Austen Society of North America, and a member of Pennwriters and SinC Guppies. She is married to her college sweetheart, and lives in the Lehigh Valley of Pennsylvania with their rescue dog, Mr. Darcy, and a clowder of cats. You can learn more on Carol's website, or by following her Facebook page.
Russ Uhler is a Rutgers graduate with three children. His story, "Bird Boy," appears in the BWG anthology Once Upon a Time: Sweet, Funny, and Strange Tales for All Ages.

In Memoriam

Sally W. Paradysz (1940-2017) was a founding member in 2006 of what was to become the Bethlehem Writers Group. Born and raised in western Massachusetts, she was the daughter of a sawyer, and spent her childhood learning to appreciate nature--which became a life-long love. She was a strong and independent woman who opened her heart to all she met. She wrote from a cabin she built in the woods by the Bucks County, Pennsylvania home she built with her partner, Mel Powell. Her memoir, From Scratch: Why I Walked Away From My Life and Built This Home, tells the story of building that house while rebuilding her life after the dual pains of rape and divorce. She was ordained as a minister of the Assembly of the Word religious community, and worked as a spiritual counselor. She won Honorable Mention for an inspirational story in the Writer’s Digest 78th Annual Writing Competition in 2009. She was a finalist in the Salem (MA) Literary Festival in 2010, and published non-fiction in 11:11 magazine. Her essay, "Tool-belt Spirituality" appears among those of such other authors as Gloria Steinem and Jimmy Carter in the collection 65 Things to Do When You Retire, and her essay "Just With Your Heart," appears in the anthology, 70 Things to Do When You Turn 70. She contributed to three BWG anthologies: A Christmas Sampler, Once Around the Sun, and A Readable Feast, and was published in Bethlehem Writers Roundtable. We will always remember her extraordinary, gentle but indominable spirit, generosity, and caring.

Members Emeriti

Carol A. Hanzl Birkas has stories in two BWG anthologies: A Christmas Sampler and Once Around the Sun.Jodi Bogert has stories in two BWG anthologies: Untethered and Fur, Feathers, and ScalesTerrie Daugherty has a story in A Readable Feast.Bernadette DeCourcey has stories in two BWG anthologies: Once Around the Sun and A Readable FeastAnne Hamilton has a story in Once Upon a Time.Ruth Heil is a nonfiction writer who did layout for Once Upon a Time.Geoffrey Mehl is a fiction and nonfiction writer who did layout for Bethlehem Writers Roundtable.Judith Mehl has short stories to two BWG anthologies: A Readable Feast and Once Upon a Time. Josie Myers has two stories in Once Upon a Time.E. L. Ryan has a story in A Readable Feast.Jo Ann Schaffer is a founding member of BWG. Her stories appear in two BWG anthologies: A Christmas Sampler and Once Around the Sun.Will Wright has stories in all BWG anthologies to date, as well as being a frequent contributor to Bethlehem Writers Roundtable under his own name and under three pen names: Stanley W. McFarland , Headley Hauser, and Walter Bego.