Steve Piacente has been a professional writer since graduating from American University in 1976. In 2010, he self-published Bella, the story of a widow’s quest to uncover the truth about her husband’s death on an Afghan battlefield. The forthcoming Bootlicker is a prequel centered on a racially charged election in South Carolina, and the horrific tie that binds a sitting white U.S. senator to the leading black congressional candidate. Steve began as a sportswriter at the Naples Daily News, switched to news at the Lakeland Ledger, and returned to DC in 1985 as Correspondent for the Tampa Tribune. In 1989, the native New Yorker became DC Correspondent for the Charleston (SC) Post & Courier. He is now deputy communications director at a large federal agency in Washington, and teaches journalism classes at his alma mater. Steve also holds a Masters in Fiction from Johns Hopkins University. Away from the office and classroom, he can usually be found on a tennis or baskebtall court.