Key Takeaways:

Our author series has been chosen to represent a variety of literary genres to meet every reader’s taste. Each individual highlighted has had a successful career and upon retirement pursued their dream to become a published author. Come learn and explore authors making a second career out of writing!

Passages & Prose helps authors cultivate, navigate, publish and promote their creative works. It has collaborated with more than 50 authors on literary endeavors. The company promotes new voices from indie authors. Indie authors self-publish their books instead of working with a traditional publishing house. Now Passages & Prose brings indie authors to the GetSetUp platform to share their stories.

Lillie Leonardi served in law enforcement for 26 years. She was the first female patrol officer employed by the City of  Arnold, Pennsylvania police department. She went on to join the FBI, Pittsburgh Division. In recent years, she retired to pursue her lifelong passion for writing and opened a literary service business in 2014.  She traditionally published two books, In The Shadow Of A Badge and The White Light Of Grace with Hay House. The books are based on her experiences as a 9/11 responder at the Flight 93 crash site. There she served as primary liaison to law enforcement agencies, United Airlines Humanitarian Response Team and surviving family members. She recently released her first debut fiction novel, The Blue Witch: Within

“I learned what you didn’t want to do as an author. Now I have a team who work to cultivate, navigate, publish, and promote indie authors.”

Lillie believes that authors should not give up their rights to their books. She works with authors to help them fulfill their dreams. Pittsburgh, where she lives, is the fifth city where the most artists and authors reside in the country. Thanks to that she’s had a chance to participate in book festivals, with non-profits, and really helping to grow the literary community.

“I’ve learned that most individuals don’t participate in virtual author events, but GetSetUp has a different energy. I love the idea of GetSetUp. For my age group, who are the largest group to sit in their home during the pandemic, it probably helped more people than the founders know.”

Join the literary community and win a basket of books

Do you love reading? Then the author's series is for you! Attend all six (6) of the author series Guest Speaking events and your name will be entered to win a basket of books!

One lucky winner will receive a basket of books with a book from each author in this series. Enjoy learning how different writers address the challenges of writing and tackle different genres. Plus, you may walk away with books to fill your shelves!

The lucky winner will have a wide selection of reading material for the next time he or she wants to curl up in their favorite reading nook.

All you have to do to enter this competition is attend all six (6) author series events. Then you will automatically be enrolled in the drawing!

Publishing after retirement

Our author series has been chosen to represent a variety of literary genres to meet every reader’s taste. Each individual highlighted has had a successful career and upon retirement pursued their dream to become a published author. Come learn and explore authors making a second career out of writing! 

Oct. 13 - First: Guest Speaker: Author Series with Romance Writer J.D. Wylde

J.D. Wylde is a romance author. After a long career working as a confidential administrative assistant for an international software engineering corporation, she now pursues her life-long passion for writing.

She believes magic happens when two souls connect and the heart finds love. She writes heartwarming stories with strong heroines, sexy heroes, and always, a happy ending. Some of her many books include: The Homecoming, The Journey, When Push Comes to Shove. Recently, she launched her latest novel When Trouble Comes Calling.  

On October 13th join in to meet Guest Speaker J.D. Wylde to learn how her imagination runs “Wylde” as she writes romance novels. 

Oct. 20 - Guest Speaker: Author Series with Children's Fiction Writer Lisa Donovan

In between driving kids to activities and lending a hand to various non-profit groups, Lisa Donovan would gaze into the backyard for peaceful breaks. The more she looked, the more she appreciated the personalities of the birds in her backyard. They inspired her first children's book.

October 20th join fellow learners and meet Children's Fiction Writer Lisa Donovan as she shares her journey to write her first children’s book.

Oct. 27 - Guest Speaker: Author Series with Paranormal Fiction Writer Donald Firesmith

Donald Firesmith is a multi-award-winning author of speculative fiction including science fiction, fantasy (magical wands), and modern urban paranormal novels. 

Prior to recently retiring to devote himself full-time to his novels, Donald Firesmith earned an international reputation as a distinguished engineer authoring seven system/software engineering books. He wrote Hell Holes (Books 1-3), The Secrets of Hawthorne House, and A Cauldron of Uncanny Dreams.

October 27th join Guest Speaker: Donald Firesmith


Nov. 3 : Guest Speaker: Author Series with Historical Fiction Writer Madhu Bazaz Wangu -

Madhu Bazaz Wangu is an award-winning author and the founder of Mindful Writers Groups and Retreats. Madhu has a doctorate in Phenomenology of Religion from the University of Pittsburgh and a post-doctoral Fellowship from Harvard University. She also taught Buddist and Hindu art history at the University of Pittsburgh, Rhode Island College and Wheaton College. 

More than three decades of meditation and journaling led Dr. Wangu to teach meditation and to write. Her work resulted in a practice she calls Writing Meditation Method. She’s written The Other Shore, The Last Suttee, The Immigrant Wife, and Chance Meetings.

November 3rd join Guest Speaker: Madhu Bazaz Wangu to learn more about writing and meditation.

Nov. 10 : Guest Speaker: Author Series with Fairy Tale Author Ellen Roth

Ellen A. Roth’s love of fairy tales inspired her to write one for grown-ups ― Ten Fingers Touching. This spellbinding, romantic escape transports adults to an imaginary world with the same pleasure they experienced in reading fairy tales as youths. 

Her creative impulses inspired her to major in art and art history at Goucher College where she received her Bachelor’s Degree. She devoted the early years of her professional career to the arts, studying museum curatorship, and obtaining an MFA from Syracuse University.

Ellen was named one of the Best 50 Women in Business in Pennsylvania, honored as a Woman of Distinction by Girl Scouts Western Pennsylvania, and is a recipient of the YWCA Tribute to Women Leadership Award.

November 10th join Guest Speaker Ellen Roth as she talks about Fantasy Fiction.

Nov. 17 : Guest Speaker: Author Series with memoir author Brian Jacob

Brian Jacob is the president of WESTARM Physical Therapy and WESTARM Home Health. Brian earned his Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology from the University of Pittsburgh in 1982 and his Master’s Degree in Healthcare Administration from the same university in 1987. 

Join Brian to learn about his memoir Is Life Fair. This is the ageless question that is contemplated when anyone is faced with an unexpected tragedy. As a 19-year-old young man, Brian Jacob encountered an accident that left him as a quadriplegic. His story of agony, acceptance, determination and ultimate fulfillment is an inspiring memoir. It will uplift any individual that questions tragedy.

This memoir is Brian’s attempt to answer the timeless question Is Life Fair and provides a sense of hope when there appears to be none. It is also a heartfelt love story that will leave the reader in awe. Join Guest Speaker Brian Jacob's as he shares his journey in writing his memoir on November 17th.

Learn about six great authors and their books and how you too can follow your publishing dreams if that’s a goal of yours!

Jun 22, 2022

Classes by:

Liz Miller

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