2016 Conference Faculty

We are hard at work planning 2016 Pikes Peak Writers Conference! We will post updates as they become available. In the meantime:

Have you seen faculty or a workshop at another event that you would like to see at conference? Tell us at Request A Workshop.

Do you want to be faculty at the next conference? Submit a proposal at Proposing a Workshop.


Jump to Agents and Acquiring Editors or Authors and Specialists

Keynote Speakers 

 2016 PPWC Keynote Speakers

2016 PPWC Keynote Speakers

Kevin J. Anderson

Kevin J. Anderson


Kevin has published 125 books, more than fifty of which have been national or international bestsellers.  He has written numerous novels in the Star Wars, X-Files, and Dune universes, as well as a unique steampunk fantasy novel, Clockwork Angels, based on the concept album by the legendary rock group Rush. His original works include the Saga of Seven Suns series, the Terra Incognita fantasy trilogy, the Saga of Shadows trilogy, and his humorous horror series featuring Dan Shamble, Zombie PI. He has edited numerous anthologies, including the Five by Five and Blood Lite series. Anderson and his wife Rebecca Moesta are the publishers of WordFire Press.

Rachel Caine

Rachel Caine


Rachel Caine is the New York Times bestselling author of more than 45 novels to date, and many short stories, including fantasy, urban fantasy, science fiction, young adult fiction, mystery, thriller, and horror. Her notable series include The Morganville Vampires, Weather Warden, Revivalist, Red Letter Days, and Outcast Season novels. She graduated from Socorro High School in El Paso, Texas, and earned a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas. Her first short story was published in 1990, and her first novel in 1991.

After a long career in business (including working as an office manager, payroll manager, insurance investigator, web designer, graphic designer, and corporate communications executive) she began writing full time in 2009.

She and her husband, artist R. Cat Conrad, live and work in Fort Worth, Texas.

Joe R. Lansdale

Joe R. Lansdale


Champion Mojo Storyteller Joe R. Lansdale is the author of over forty novels and numerous short stories. His work has appeared in national anthologies, magazines, and collections, and numerous foreign publications. He has written for comics, television, film, newspapers, and Internet sites. His work has been collected in more than two dozen short-story collections, and he has edited or co-edited over a dozen anthologies. He has received the Edgar Award, eight Bram Stoker Awards, the Horror Writers Association Lifetime Achievement Award, the British Fantasy Award, the Grinzani Cavour Prize for Literature, the Herodotus Historical Fiction Award, the Inkpot Award for Contributions to Science Fiction and Fantasy, and many others. His novella Bubba Ho-Tep was adapted to film by Don Coscarelli, starring Bruce Campbell and Ossie Davis. His story “Incident On and Off a Mountain Road” was adapted to film for Showtime’s “Masters of Horror,” and he adapted his short story “Christmas with the Dead” to film his ownself. The film adaptation of his novel Cold in July was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival.

He is currently co-producing several films, is Writer In Residence at Stephen F. Austin State University, and is the founder of the martial arts system Shen Chuan: Martial Science and its affiliate, Shen Chuan Family System. He is a member of both the United States and International Martial Arts Halls of Fame. He lives in Nacogdoches, Texas with his wife, dog, and two cats.

Jeff Lindsay

Jeff Lindsay


Jeff Lindsay is the award-winning author of the NY Times Best-selling  ‘Dexter’ novels upon which the international hit TV show “Dexter” is based.  His books appear in 42 languages around the world.

Although a full-time writer now, he has worked as an actor, comic, director, MC, bouncer, teacher, DJ, singer, songwriter, composer, musician, sportscaster, dishwasher, teacher, arts reporter, soccer coach, talk show host, steel worker, cook, detective, gardener, handyman, greeting card salesman and sailing instructor.  He still does occasional work as a voice-over artist, including narrating his own audio books.

Jeff performed extensively as a solo singer/guitarist on the coffee house circuit and later with a series of bands in the L.A. club scene of the early 1980s. He also worked for comedian Steve Allen for four years. He worked for 6 years as a story analyst, script doctor and screenwriter, and even had breakfast with Steven Spielberg. He also wrote several TV sitcoms, and many feature films, with his co-writer and wife Hilary Hemingway, for Paramount Pictures, Warner Brothers, 20th Century Fox, Fries Entertainment, and Republic Pictures, and he has taught writing and screenwriting at the University level. Lindsay has written twenty-two plays – several of them musicals – which have been produced in New York, New Haven, Key West, Pittsburgh, London and California.

For 5 years Jeff wrote “Fatherhood,” a semi-syndicated weekly column on parenting from the male perspective.  He hosted several local PBS-TV shows, and a documentary, Hemingway In Cuba, which was seen nationally on PBS.

An enthusiastic cook, he also fishes, cruises on his 36 foot trawler, and acts as a trampoline for his three daughters.

Wendy Corsi Staub

Wendy Corsi Staub


Wendy is the award-winning author of more than eighty novels, best known for the single title psychological suspense novels she writes under her own name. Those novels and the women’s fiction she writes under the pseudonym Wendy Markham also frequently appear on the New York Times,  USA Today, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Bookscan bestseller lists.

A two-time finalist for the prestigious Simon and Schuster Mary Higgins Clark Award, she’s won the 2008 RT Award for Career Achievement in Suspense, the 2007 RWA-NYC Golden Apple Award for Lifetime Achievement, an RWA Rita award, and five WLA Washington Irving Prizes for Fiction.

Wendy grew up in a small town near Buffalo and graduated from SUNY Fredonia. She moved to Manhattan and became an editor before selling her first novel in 1992.

She now lives in the New York City suburbs with her husband and sons. A vocal and active supporter of Relay for Life, Support Connection, and the American Cancer Society, she was a 2012 Ovarian Cancer Awareness month national spokesperson for the Sandy Rollman Ovarian Cancer Foundation. As an animal rights advocate, she fosters for various rescue organizations.

Agents and Acquiring Editors

Annie Berger

Annie Berger


Harper Collins

Associate Editor

Annie Berger started out as an editorial assistant at Simon & Schuster’s Aladdin imprint. There she worked with authors Brandon Mull, Rachel Renée Russell and Lauren Barnholdt. She was the editor for both the middle-grade and chapter book Nancy Drew series and the middle-grade Hardy Boys series. Annie also signed up debut authors Jen Malone’s At Your Service and Gail Nall’s Breaking the Ice. Now an associate editor at HarperCollins, Annie is delighted to be editing both middle-grade and teen, and works with authors such as Jen Malone (YA debut Wanderlost), Kristen Kittscher (The Tiara on the Terrace), Gail Nall (Exit Stage Left), Jo Whittemore (Confidentially Yours series) and Diane Zahler. Annie also assists with best-selling authors Gail Carson Levine, Lauren Oliver and Rita Williams-Garcia. @EditorALB

Melissa Edwards

Melissa Edwards


The Aaron M. Priest Literary Agency

Literary Agent, Foreign Rights

Melissa L. Edwards is a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis and Vanderbilt Law School. She is a member in good standing of the New York State bar. While Melissa began her career as a commercial litigation attorney, she always maintained aspirations to work in publishing. At present, Melissa handles foreign rights for Aaron Priest and she is actively reading to develop her own list. Melissa’s taste ranges in genre from classic Victorian literature to hard-boiled crime dramas. She is interested in reading international thrillers with likeable and arresting protagonists, light-hearted women’s fiction and YA, female-driven (possibly small-town) suspense, and completely immersive fantasy. Ultimately, Melissa is looking for a book that will keep her glued to the couch all day and night, and continue to occupy her thoughts for weeks later.

Linda Epstein

Linda Epstein


The Jennifer DeChiarra Literary Agency

Associate Agent

Linda Epstein has been an Associate Agent at the Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency in New York City since 2011. Prior to that she interned at Folio Literary Management, The McVeigh Agency, Jean V. Naggar Literary Agency, and Meryl Zegarek Public Relations. She has a BA in English and Environmental Studies from Buffalo University and a BSN from New York University. Linda blogs at theblabbermouthblog.com and you can find her on Twitter @LindaEpstein.

Linda represents picture books, middle grade and young adult novels, as well as children’s non-fiction. She likes stories for kids that deal with issues of identity, history, sexual politics, feminism, and culture. Some of her other interests also include art, food, and the environment. She looks for the offbeat, quirky, left of center, and bonus points are given if you keep your sense of humor about it all. Linda is looking for literary and commercial fiction, mysteries, speculative fiction, and projects that use magical realism. She is actively seeking to represent projects that give voice to work by and about all kinds of marginalized people.

Angie Hodapp

Angie Hodapp


Nelson Literary Agency

Talent Scout, Contracts and Royalties Manager

Angie Hodapp graduated from the University of Denver Publishing Institute in 2002 and earned an M.A. in English from Colorado State University in 2010. She has worked as an editorial assistant at Colorado Review, as a project manager for a publisher of resources for educators, and as an editor in the magazine industry. She loves teaching classes of interest to writers—everything from writing craft and information design to query-letter boot camps and royalties-auditing workshops. She and her husband live in Denver with their two former shelter cats.

Angie is currently reviewing queries and accepting manuscripts on behalf of Kristin Nelson


Jennifer Letwack


Thomas Dunne Books

Assistant Editor

Jennifer Letwack is an assistant editor at Thomas Dunne/St. Martin’s press. She is interested in creative and detailed world building, complex, diverse characters, and strong female heroines. On the non-fiction side, she is interested in histories focused on dynamic personalities in American history, as well as her two non-literary loves, feminism and video games.

Jennifer is looking to acquire: Fantasy (dark, high/epic, historical fantasy); Historical; Science Fiction (all types); YA and New Adult (fantasy, science fiction); Adult Nonfiction (biography–focus on women, cooking–baking specifically, historical narrative).

Renee Nyen

Renee Nyen


KT Literary Agency

Literary Agent

Several years in the editorial department at Random House’s Colorado division provided Renee with the opportunity to work with bestselling and debut authors alike. She moved to KT Literary in early 2013 to cultivate her passion for YA literature. Drawing on her editorial experience, she loves digging into client manuscripts and helping authors shape the best story possible. She makes her home in Phoenix, AZ with her husband and two small children. You can follow her on twitter @Renee_Nyen.

Steve Saffel

Steve Saffel


Titan Books

Senior Editor

Steve Saffel is a Senior Acquisitions Editor at Titan Books, the world’s premiere popular culture publisher, acquiring original science fiction, fantasy (epic, heroic, and dark), horror, crime fiction, art books, and media tie-ins such as Alien, Planet of the Apes (new and classic), Batman: Arkham Knight, Mass Effect, and more. Some of his recent and upcoming projects include the military science fiction series Virtues of War by Bennett Coles, the dark urban fantasy Conspiracy of Angels by Michelle Belanger, the heroic fantasy Robin Hood: Mark of the Black Arrow by Debbie Vigue and James Tuck, a Cthulhu vs. Sherlock Holmes trilogy by Lois Gresh, the Alien: Rage War SF epic that crosses between Predator, Alien, and Alien vs. Predator, the mystery novel Mycroft Holmes by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Anna Waterhouse, new fiction for Dishonored by Adam Christopher and Batman: Arkham Knight by Alex Irvine and Marv Wolfman, and The Art of Robert E. McGinnis by Robert E. McGinnis and Art Scott.

Alec Shane

Alec Shane


Writers House

Literary Agent

Alec majored in English at Brown University, a degree he put to immediate use by moving to Los Angeles after graduation to become a professional stunt man. Realizing that he prefers books to breakaway glass, he moved to New York City in 2008 to pursue a career in publishing. Alec quickly found a home at Writers House Literary Agency, where he worked under Jodi Reamer and Amy Berkower on a large number of YA and Adult titles. Twitter handle: @alecdshane.

On the nonfiction side, Alec would love to see humor, biography, history (particularly military history), true crime, “guy” reads, and all things sports. “What I’m looking for in fiction: mystery, thriller, suspense, horror, historical fiction, literary fiction, and books geared toward young male readers (both YA and MG). What I’m not looking for: Romance (paranormal or otherwise), straight sci-fi, high fantasy, picture books, self-help, women’s fiction, food, travel memoir.”

Elaine Spencer

Elaine Spencer


The Knight Agency

Vice President of Operations/Literary Agent

Elaine Spencer entered the publishing industry after realizing she didn’t want to spend the rest of her life as an Economist. After studying Economics and Comparative Literature at The University of Georgia, she joined the TKA team in 2005 and assumed a variety of roles including submissions coordinator and sub rights manager before settling in her current position as VP of Operations and Associate Agent.

Elaine keeps a focused client list as it is most important to her to be able to work closely with her clients through each step of the publishing process, from a manuscript’s inception all the way through publication, promotion and beyond. She enjoys seeing her clients grow as authors, and one of her favorite parts of the job is working side by side with her clients to educate them about not only about the process but also the business at large. Elaine is a member of RWA and AAR and is interested in a wide-variety of subgenres including but not limited to romance, women’s fiction, young adult and middle grade material. She loves stories that include dogs, cooking, fashion, secret societies or clubs, southern flair, wit and humor, heart-tugging conclusions that will bring her to tears and smart sassy characters that stay with you long after the final pages. In addition to channeling her inner Martha Stewart and flexing her Pinterest-inspired muscles, Elaine spends her spare time traveling, cheering on the Georgia Bulldogs, and enjoying the great outdoors with her husband and four-legged child, Claude.

Suzie Townshend

Suzie Townshend


New Leaf Literary

Director of Literary Services & Literary Agent

Suzie represents all brands of children’s and adult fiction. She is actively looking to build her list. In adult, she’s specifically looking for new adult, romance (all subgenres), fantasy (urban fantasy, science fiction, steampunk, epic fantasy) and crime fiction (mysteries, thrillers). In Childrens’ she loves YA (all subgenres) and is dying to find great Middle Grade projects. Suzie loves strong characters and voice driven stories that break out of the typical tropes of their genres.

For more info on her clients and projects, please go here.

Read Suzie’s blog here and follow her on twitter.

Authors & Specialists


PPWC At a Glance

When: April 15-17, 2016

Where: Colorado Springs Marriott
5580 Tech Center Drive
Colorado Springs, Colorado 80919
(719) 260-1800

Back By Popular Demand! Due to the positive feedback, we are continuing the payment plan option for the 2016 PPWC.

Thursday Programming: Pikes Peak Writers is pleased to bring back our overwhelmingly popular Thursday Prequel on Thursday, April 14, 2016.

Faculty (Editors, Agents, Authors, Etc.): Stay tuned for more information about our faculty as it develops.

Payment/Registration Methods: All registrations for Pikes Peak Writers Conference must be done through our partner, RegOnline. You can use any form of payment RegOnline’s secured web site will accept. Registration via postal mail, email, fax, or non-RegOnline methods will not be accepted. Payment methods that are not accepted via RegOnline may not be used.

Ride and Room Sharing: If you're in need of a shared ride or room, or if you have something to share, please check out our Ride and Room Sharing page.

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