Samuel Abel

Samuel Abel is a California native who served overseas during Operation Iraqi Freedom as a United States Navy Hospital Corpsman. Until recently, he was living in San Diego at the ASPIRE Center, a long term residential treatment program for post-911 veterans who suffer from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and traumatic brain injury (TBI) run by the Veterans Administration. He is very new to writing, enjoys it very much and hopes to continue to use literature as a creative outlet to help in his treatment and recovery.

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Rolf Yngve

 Rolf Yngve rose from seaman to captain during a thirty-five year active-duty career in the US Navy. A surface warfare officer, he commanded a destroyer, served as the US Defense Attaché to Rome, and deployed for naval operations at sea with eleven different ships and staffs. Rolf holds an MFA from Warren Wilson, was a 2012 MacDowell Colony Fellow, and a 2014 Bread Loaf Camargo Residency Fellow. He is the fiction editor for Shadowgraph Magazine and teaches resume writing to veterans in recovery at Veterans Village of San Diego. He lives in Coronado, California, with his spouse, Sharon Shelton, Captain, USN (retired).

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Gill Sotu

Gill Sotu isn’t strictly a poet, a musician, a writer, a DJ or host, but strives to combine the artistic elements of himself as he strives to be an ever present forceful undercurrent of soulful, comedic, thought-provoking passion that engages and inspires his audiences throughout California. Gill is currently the host of Neo Soul Tuesday at the Onyx Room, Raw Artist Showcase at the House Of Blues, Train Of Thought Podcast & Radio Show on KNSJ 89.1, as well as being selected to be the first Artist in Residence for the Jacob’s Center For Neighborhood Innovation.

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LCDR Liam Corley

 LCDR Liam Corley teaches American literature at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, and his work on literature and war can be found in Chautauqua, College English, and War, Literature, and the Arts. LCDR Corley is currently on military leave to teach at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD. He is a veteran of Operation Enduring Freedom. Find him online at

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Adam Stone

Adam Stone is a retired Marine Corps Gunnery Sergeant with 20 years of service including multiple combat tours in the middle east. He is married with four kids, and at the time of writing his piece, a freshman at San Diego City College.

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Brent Wingfield

Brent Wingfield is a former U.S. Army Sergeant with combat experience in Iraq and Afghanistan. He has always enjoyed writing, primarily as a means of coping, and he now spends his time pontificating about the eight years he spent in the Infantry. His favorite writers are Hemingway and Kafka. Brent enjoys long walks on the beach, craft beer, and belt-fed machine-guns.

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Alex Flynn

Alex Flynn is a photojournalist currently splitting his time between New York City and Missouri. He enlisted in the United States Army in 2008 and spent four years as a infantryman, then three more as a combat correspondent. Other than a brief stint in Japan, the Army didn’t show him much other than Afghanistan. He is currently working on projects as a full time freelance photojournalist. He hopes to continue to use his written and photographic work to contribute to the narrative of the veteran experience.

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Kurt Kalbfleisch

Kurt Kalbfleisch is a writer who still works for the US Navy to pay the bills. He joined the US Navy after graduating from high school in 1979. Following his training as a Fire Controlman, Kurt’s first two assignments were as a Close-In Weapon System technician aboard USS JOHN F KENNEDY (CV 67) and USS SAVANNAH (AOR 4). After serving as part of the commissioning crew of USS GARY (FFG 51), Kurt served as a Close-In Weapon System instructor at Service School Command, Great Lakes, Illinois. After his initiation as a Chief Petty Officer, Kurt joined the commissioning crew of USS COWPENS (CG 63), where he served as Leading Chief Petty Officer of the combined Gunnery and Cruise Missile divisions. On 17 January 1993, the 212th anniversary of the Revolutionary War battle for which his ship was named, Kurt led the crew in a Tomahawk missile strike against targets in Iraq. Following a tour as an instructor at Fleet Combat Training Center, Pacific in San Diego, Kurt returned to sea in USS ELLIOT (DD 967) as Leading Chief of Strike Warfare division. He retired from the Navy in 2002, and now lives with his family in La Mesa, California.

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Jim Ruland

Jim Ruland is a veteran of the U.S. Navy and the author of Forest of Fortune, the short story collection Big Lonesome, and co-author with Scott Campbell Jr. of Discovery Channel’s Deadliest Catch of Giving the Finger, and with Keith Morris on his punk rock memoir My Damage (forthcoming 2016). His work has received awards from Bread Loaf, Canteen, Reader’s Digest, San Diego Book Awards and the National Endowment for the Arts. He is the books columnist for San Diego CityBeat and a contributor to the Los Angeles Times. His fiction and nonfiction have appeared in The Believer, Electric Literature, Esquire, Granta, Hobart, Oxford American Magazine and more. Ruland has taught writing at Northern Arizona University, Santa Monica College and at San Diego Writers, Ink and has served as a visiting writer/guest lecturer at Cal State Channel Islands, Oklahoma University, University of California Riverside Palm Desert Low Residency, PEN in the Community, Radford University, and Santa Fe University of Art and Design.

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Brian Turner

Brian Turner’s latest book, My Life as a Foreign Country: A Memoir has been called “Achingly, disturbingly, shockingly beautiful” by Nick Flynn and “a humane, heartbreaking, and expertly crafted work of literature” by Tim O’Brien. My Life as a Foreign Country is published by W.W. Norton & Company in the US and Canada, and by Jonathan Cape/Random House in the UK and Ireland. His two collections of poetry: Here, Bullet (Alice James Books, 2005; Bloodaxe Books, 2007) and Phantom Noise (Alice James Books, 2010; Bloodaxe Books in October of 2010) have also been published in Swedish by Oppenheim forlag. His poems have been published and translated in Arabic, Chinese, Dutch, French, German, Hebrew, Italian, Polish, Serbo-Croatian, Spanish, and Swedish.

His poetry and essays have been published in The New York Times, National Geographic, Poetry Daily, The Georgia Review, Virginia Quarterly Review and other journals. Turner was featured in the documentary film Operation Homecoming: Writing the Wartime Experience, which was nominated for an Academy Award. He received a USA Hillcrest Fellowship in Literature, an NEA Literature Fellowship in Poetry, the Amy Lowell Traveling Fellowship, a US-Japan Friendship Commission Fellowship, the Poets’ Prize, and a Fellowship from the Lannan Foundation. His most recent book of poetry, Phantom Noise, was short-listed for the T.S. Eliot Prize in England. His work has appeared on National Public Radio, the BBC, Newshour with Jim Lehrer, Here and Now, and on Weekend America, among others.

Turner earned an MFA from the University of Oregon before serving for seven years in the US Army. He was an infantry team leader for a year in Iraq with the 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division. Prior to that, he deployed to Bosnia-Herzegovina with the 10th Mountain Division (1999-2000).

As well as an infantryman, Brian has worked as a machinist, a locksmith’s assistant, a convenience store clerk, a pickler, a maker of circuit boards, a dishwasher, an EFL teacher in South Korea, a low voltage electrician, a radio DJ, a bass guitar instructor, and more. He’s lived and traveled to Japan, South Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Russia, Kuwait, Iraq, Bahrain, UAE, South Africa, Kenya, Uganda, Morocco, Turkey, Greece, Albania, Macedonia, Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Italy, Switzerland, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Poland, Germany, France, The Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Ireland, and the U.K., among others.

He directs the MFA program at Sierra Nevada College and serves as a contributing editor at The Normal School.

Brian is married to Ilyse Kusnetz (poet and author of Small Hours from Truman State University Press). They live in Orlando, Florida.

Follow his doings at

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