Loretta Nyhan

Loretta Nyhan is an author and professor of literature. She is the author of “The Witch Collector” and the co-author of “I’ll Be Seeing You.” She lives in the Chicago area with her husband and sons.

Achy Obejas

Achy Obejas is the author of “Ruins,” “Days of Awe” and three other books of fiction. Her translation of Junot Diaz’s “The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao” was a finalist for Spain’s Esther Benitez Translation Prize. Born in Havana, she lives in Chicago.

Clare O’Donohue

Clare O’Donohue is the author of the “Kate Conway Mysteries” and the “Someday Quilts Mysteries.” She is the vice president of the Mystery Writers of America, Midwest Chapter, and a TV writer-producer. Her seventh novel, “The Double Wedding Ring,” is scheduled to be released in September. clareodonohue.com.

Ignacio Olmos

Ignacio Olmos is the executive director at the Instituto Cervantes of Chicago. He has published several papers on philosophy and cultural policy.

S. Jay Olshansky

S. Jay Olshansky is a professor in the School of Public Health at the University of Illinois at Chicago, a research associate at the University of Chicago’s Center on Aging, and a recipient of a MacArthur grant to study longevity. He is the co-author of “The Quest for Immortality.”

Amye Day Ong

Amye Day Ong is master’s candidate in nonfiction at Columbia College Chicago. She holds a master’s degree in religion from Yale University and a bachelor’s degree in Spanish from Transylvania University. She has read her nonfiction work at the 2nd Story reading series and Essay Fiesta. She is from Villa Hills, Ky.

Peter Orner

Peter Orner is the author of “Esther Stories,” newly re-issued by Little, Brown with a new foreword by Marilynne Robinson, and the forthcoming story collection, Last Car Over the Sagamore Bridge, out this August. He is also the author of the novels, “The Second Coming of Mavala Shikongo,” and “Love and Shame and Love.” He is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and two Pushcart Prizes. Born in Chicago, he lives in San Francisco. peterorner.net.

Erica O’Rourke

Erica O'Rourke is the young adult author of “The Torn Trilogy.” Her latest novel, “Dissonance,” is set to be published in March 2014. ericaorourke.com; @erica_orourke.

Kevin Pang

Kevin Pang is a features reporter at the Chicago Tribune, writing about food and pop culture. He won the James Beard Award in 2010 for “The Cheeseburger Show.” His writing is featured in the 2010-12 editions of the “Best Food Writing” anthology.

George Papajohn

George Papajohn is an associate managing editor at the Chicago Tribune and has worked on investigative projects since 1999. Many of these stories have made a significant impact on public policy while earning recognition from journalism peers. “Hidden Hazards,” a project he directed, won a Pulitzer Prize in 2008.