by Lori Capullo
Updated 8 yearss ago
Founder/president/CEO, Women of Tomorrow Mentor & Scholarship Program, Miami
In her spare time, Valoppi writes novels. Her first, "Certain Cure," which she describes as an "end-of-days thriller that bridges the gap between science and religion," was a National Best Books 2008 finalist. Now Valoppi is at work on the sequel.
Who knew? "I've always been somewhat of an amateur biblical scholar, and I've always loved advanced science. I was intrigued by how futuristic ancient biblical prophecies sounded so I decided to put them in a modern world."
Is full-time writing in her future? "Not sure. But I would love to sit in an isolated ski house on a mountain somewhere with my family and just write and ski and drink wine for the whole winter."
What she reads: "As a kid, I loved to read Alfred Hitchcock, and right now rereading all his books is on my list. I love all Dan Brown's books and Michael Crichton's. Paul Levine is a great read and a good friend, and he's from Miami."?
Next page: Meet Florida author John Manrique.
Vice president, sales and marketing, Starwood Vacation Ownership, Palm Beach Gardens
Centering around an exotic dancer looking to strike it rich by selling luxury condos just before the real estate bust, the book features a plot that twists and turns and a cast of colorful characters inspired by people Manrique has come across.
Manrique's latest book is "For the People: The Invisible Hand of Power's Unofficial Guide to the 2008 Presidential Election."
On his night table: "I enjoy a wide range of authors from F. Scott Fitzgerald to Mark Haddon, and recently my wife, Michelle, turned me on to the brilliant David Sedaris. For Florida fiction, I enjoy Carl Hiaasen, Tim Dorsey and the great John D. MacDonald."
Inspiration: "My satire focuses on the topical, so everything from the Publix checkout line to the church parking lot offers ideas."
Writing full time: "With the first book, I didn't have much research to do, but the second one required quite a bit since the subject wasn't something I knew intimately."
Up next: "I'm in the early conceptual stages of my next novel, which is shaping up to be a satire of organized religion. The working title is 'The Book of Judas.' "