J. A. Konrath
A prolific and very talented author, J. A. Konrath was born in Skokie, Illinois and grew up in that region. According to his bio, he graduated from Columbia in 1992. His first novel was published in 2004. How he earned his living in between is not mentioned but since his first book came out, he has kept very busy with his writing.
Even as many of his books were finding the main stream publishers, he was finding the benefits and merits of the epublishing world and has made a name for himself, not only as a highly entertaining author but also as an innovator and pioneer.