2017 Conference Faculty

We have keynote speakers, agents, editors and a few surprise guests for the 2017 Silver Jubilee Conference! Workshop planning, special events and–what? a costume night?–are all coming along at a furious but fun pace.

Please keep in mind that some things are out of our control. We do our best to provide you with the most up-to-date information as possible but ALL faculty is subject to change at any time without notice.

2017-banner-final-copy

Keynote Speakers


 

Kevin Hearne

faculty-hearneKevin Hearne is the famous author of the popular series The Iron Druid Chronicles which is a series of urban fantasy novels that is set in present day Tempe, Arizona. The popular series follows a character Atticus O’Sullivan who is the last of the Druids. Atticus has to deal with different obstacles throughout the series such as angry gods from multiple pantheons, vengeful witches, werewolves, and vampires.

Kevin hugs the hell out of trees and loves doggies and living in Colorado with his family. He is also fond of comic books, whiskey, beer, tacos, fresh air, clean energy, and friendly people. He’s prone to singing in parking lots if you get him drunk enough and has been told that his handwriting is really quite lovely.

Tess Gerritsen

faculty-gerritsen-copyInternationally bestselling author Tess Gerritsen took an unusual route to a writing career. A graduate of Stanford University, Tess went on to medical school at the University of California, San Francisco, where she was awarded her M.D.

While on maternity leave from her work as a physician, she began to write fiction. In 1987, her first novel was published. Call After Midnight, a romantic thriller, was followed by eight more romantic suspense novels. She also wrote a screenplay, “Adrift”, which aired as a 1993 CBS Movie of the Week starring Kate Jackson.

Tess’s first medical thriller, Harvest, was released in hardcover in 1996, and it marked her debut on the New York Times bestseller list. Her suspense novels since then have been: Life Support (1997), Bloodstream (1998), Gravity (1999), The Surgeon (2001), The Apprentice (2002), The Sinner (2003), Body Double (2004), Vanish (2005), The Mephisto Club (2006), The Bone Garden (2007), The Keepsake (2008; UK title: Keeping the Dead), Ice Cold (2010; UK title: The Killing Place), The Silent Girl (2011), Last To Die (August 2012), Die Again (January 2015) and Playing With Fire (coming October 27, 2015). Her books have been published in forty countries, and more than 30 million copies have been sold around the world.

Her books have been top-3 bestsellers in the United States and number one bestsellers abroad. She has won both the Nero Wolfe Award (for Vanish) and the Rita Award (for The Surgeon). Critics around the world have praised her novels as “Pulse-pounding fun” (Philadelphia Inquirer), “Scary and brilliant” (Toronto Globe and Mail), and “Polished, riveting prose” (Chicago Tribune). Publisher Weekly has dubbed her the “medical suspense queen”.

Her series of novels featuring homicide detective Jane Rizzoli and medical examiner Maura Isles inspired the TNT television series “Rizzoli & Isles” starring Angie Harmon and Sasha Alexander.

Now retired from medicine, she writes full time. She lives in Maine.

Darynda Jones

faculty-jonesFor reasons known only to the Big Guy upstairs, NYTimes and USA Today Best Selling author Darynda Jones won both a Golden Heart and a RITA for her manuscript FIRST GRAVE ON THE RIGHT. But even before that, she couldn’t remember a time she wasn’t putting pen to paper. When she was five, she would pick up a pencil and notepad, scribble utter chaos onto the page and ask her mom to read her masterpiece aloud. Thankfully, her mother would play along. Later she wrote plays for the neighborhood kids, made up stories for her brother as he played cars, and fell in love with Captain Kirk. Those raging, seven-year-old hormones only fueled her imagination, prompting her to create fantastical stories for Barbie and Ken to enact. Ken was such a bad boy back then.

After years of being repeatedly sent to the principal’s office for daydreaming in class, she managed to make it to high school where she almost finished her first manuscript. Life was good. Writing was good. Then she graduated and the real world came crashing through. She forced the dream aside in favor of sustenance and shelter, got married to a local rock star, and had at least two kids that she can think of, the oldest of whom was born Deaf, probably to spite her. When he was five, she packed up her boys and moved to Albuquerque to put him in a Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing program. The rock star stayed behind with the business, and they took turns going back and forth on the weekends to see each other for seven really long years.

While in Albuquerque, Darynda decided to see the cup half full and go back to college while she still had enough brain cells to make it worth her while. After graduating Summa cum Laude from the University of New Mexico with a degree in Sign Language Interpreting, she moved back to her hometown and got a real job. Several in fact, mostly teaching at a local college and interpreting pretty much everywhere. Based on personal experience, she does not recommend having more than three jobs at any given time.

But bit by bit, the desire to write needled its way back to the surface. Unable to squelch it any longer, she started writing seriously again in 2002 with one goal in mind: A publishing contract. Unfortunately, she sucked. Thank goodness practice makes almost-perfect and three complete manuscripts later, she won that Golden Heart, landed an amazing agent and sold to St. Martin’s Press in a three-book deal.

She currently has two series with St. Martin’s Press, the Charley Davidson series and the Darklight Trilogy. She hopes you enjoy reading them as much as she enjoys writing them.

Darynda lives in the Land of Enchantment, also known as New Mexico, with her husband of almost 30 years and two beautiful sons, the Mighty, Mighty Jones Boys.

Donald Maass

faculty-maassDonald Maass founded the Donald Maass Literary Agency in New York in 1980. His agency sells more than 150 novels every year to major publishers in the U.S. and overseas. He is the author of The Career Novelist (1996),Writing the Breakout Novel (2001), Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook (2004), The Fire in Fiction (2009), The Breakout Novelist (2011) and Writing 21st Century Fiction (2012). He is a past president of the Association of Authors’ Representatives, Inc.

Acquiring Editors


 

Mike Braff

braff-michaelMike Braff is an editor at Del Rey Books, a science fiction and fantasy imprint of the world’s largest English-language trade book publisher, Penguin Random House. Perhaps best known for his work on Pierce Brown’s #1 New York Times Bestselling Red Rising Trilogy, Mike has edited and published critically acclaimed works by Jason M. Hough, Indra Das, Sylvain Neuvel, Alan Smale, Ted Kosmatka, and Matthew Stover. Raised on a steady diet of Tolkien, Crichton, King, Miéville, and Star Wars, he is searching for commercial science fiction and fantasy that appeals both to casual and core genre readers. Born and raised in the New York metro area and educated in Montréal (McGill University, B.A. 2007), Mike now spends his days in Brooklyn, NY with his rescued pit bull Ruby–photos of whom will be provided in abundance upon request.

Kate Brauning

Kate is a senior acquiring editor at Entangled Publishing and an author of young adult fiction (How We Fall, Merit Press). Kate acquires YA, NA, and adult fiction across Entangled’s imprints. She’s especially interested in funny/charming or dark YA, and high-concept stories with literary writing, regardless of genre. In adult fiction, she’s looking for small-town or community-driven romances with clever or hilarious meet-cutes, and romance-driven women’s fiction. Authors Kate has worked with include Lydia Kang, Ingrid Paulson, Julie Hammerle, Tristina Wright, Erica Cameron, MK Meredith, and Golden Heart finalist Kimberly Bell.

In her spare time, she makes three-tier cakes, hunts down new music, and reads just about everything. Kate can be found on Twitter (@KateBrauning) and runs the group publishing blog Publishing Hub.

Image courtesy of www.jenniophotography.com

Cheryl Klein

klein-cheryl-foragedCheryl Klein is the editorial director at Lee & Low Books. She spent the first sixteen years of her career at Scholastic, where she edited and published books for children, teenagers, and discerning adults. She is also the author of The Magic Words: Writing Great Books for Children and Young Adults (W. W. Norton) and Second Sight: An Editor’s Talks on Writing, Revising, and Publishing Books for Children and Young Adults (self-published). She lives in Brooklyn, New York, with her husband and cat, and can be found online here and as @chavelaque.

Save

Esi Sogah

sogah-esiEsi Sogah joined Kensington Publishing in January 2013 as a Senior Editor, working with such authors as Sally MacKenzie, Jennifer Dawson, Christine d’Abo, and Dana Bate. She is looking to acquire mainly romance, mystery, and commercial fiction. Prior to Kensington, Esi worked at William Morrow & Avon, helping to launch the Avon Impulse digital-first imprint. When not reading or editing, you can find her on Twitter at @esisogah, usually dissecting a Broadway show, or at @Kensingtonbooks. You can also find her on facebook.com/kensingtonpublishing, Instagram.com/esogah or Instagram.com/kensingtonbooks

Agents


 

Lisa Abellera

abellera-lisaLisa Abellera joined Kimberley Cameron and Associates in 2013 with a background in management, marketing, and finance. She has studied creative writing, design and business, earning her B.A. in Strategic Management from Dominican University of CA and her M.F.A. in Creative Writing from University of San Francisco.

Lisa had a successful career in the corporate world before joining the world of publishing. After editorial internships with an independent press and Kimberley Cameron & Associates, she now follows her true passion for books and writing. She leverages her business and marketing expertise to help authors navigate the complexities of publishing.

Lisa is seeking to represent upmarket fiction, women’s fiction, historical fiction, mystery/suspense/thrillers (especially if it has a dose of science or the supernatural), science fiction, fantasy, most speculative fiction except for paranormal fantasy (no demons, angels, vampires, zombies, werewolves, etc.), romance if it’s an element or part of another genre, NA, YA and middle grade.

Lisa does not represent nonfiction (this includes memoir), short story or poetry collections, picture books, early readers, chapter books, screenplays or other works of drama, nor does she represent self-published books.

Heather Flaherty

flaherty-heatherHeather Flaherty grew up in Massachusetts, between Boston and the Cape, and started working in New York City as a playwright during college. After much country hopping and some work in editorial, Heather became a YA and Children’s Literary Scout, consulting with foreign publishers and Hollywood regarding what the next big book will be. Now as an Agent with The Bent Agency, she’s thrilled to grow authors for that same success.

Currently, she’s looking for authors of Middle-Grade and Young-Adult fiction, as well as select Adult Fiction and Non-Fiction projects. For YA, she’s looking across all genres, and loves an excellent and authentic teen voice. For MG, she’s looking for more realistic stories (either contemporary or period), about coping, coming-of-age, or situations seen through the eyes of a young person. In Adult, she’s specifically wanting female-centric thrillers and commercial woman’s fiction with solid storytelling and strong voices. She’s also always on the lookout for fantastic upmarket projects that bridge the gap between commercial and literary lists. On the Non-fiction side, she leans towards pop-culture, humor, and social-media based projects, as well as teen memoir. @HeddaFlaherty

Natalie Lakosil

lakosil-natalieNatalie is an agent at Bradford Literary Agency. Natalie is drawn to talented, hard-working new authors with a fresh, unique voice and hook. Her specialties are children’s literature (from picture book through teen and New Adult), romance (contemporary and historical), cozy mystery/crime, upmarket women’s/general fiction and select children’s nonfiction. Her interests include historical, multi-cultural, magical realism, sci-fi/fantasy, gritty, thrilling and darker contemporary novels, middle grade with heart, and short, quirky or character-driven picture books. She is always drawn to an open and positive attitude in an author, professionalism, good grammar, and fantastical, beautifully written, engaging and sexy plots.

Natalie is not looking for: Inspirational novels, memoir, romantic suspense, adult thrillers, poetry, screenplays

Blog: www.adventuresinagentland.com
Twitter @Natalie_Lakosil

Sam Morgan

morgan-samSam is the Right Hand of Darkness at JABberwocky. He is a native of Shelby, North Carolina and graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a B.A. in Communications – Media Studies and Production. Before joining Jabberwocky in late 2012, Sam worked throughout New York City as a television critic, pizza guy, and several other glamorous positions. He’s an active nerd across all media from British television (Doctor Who and Black Mirror), to videogames (Injustice and Nintendo), to SF and fantasy novels (Pratchett, Adams, Gaiman), to college basketball (Go Heels, Go America). Sam is also active in the New York comedy scene at the Upright Citizens Brigade theater and making his own little rinky-dink videos in his spare time. He is ridiculously handsome, gut-busting witty, and prone to hyperbole.

You can also follow him on the ole twitter @samroebuck.

Sam is looking for Fantasy, Science Fiction, Literary Fiction, Humor and more. He does NOT accept YA, MG or NA. For more details on what he likes: http://awfulagent.com/agents/sam-morgan

Kristin Nelson

nelson-kristinKristin established Nelson Literary Agency, LLC, in 2002 and over the last decade+ of her career has represented over thirty-five New York Times bestselling titles and many USA Today bestsellers. Clients include Jamie Ford, Hugh Howey, Gail Carriger, Josh Malerman, J.D. Barker, Marie Lu, Ally Carter, Stacey Lee, Simone Elkeles, Jasinda Wilder, Jana DeLeon, Courtney Milan, and RITA-award winners Kristen Callihan, Sherry Thomas, and Linnea Sinclair.

She is currently looking for literary commercial novels, big crossover novels with one foot squarely in genre, upmarket women’s fiction, lead title or hardcover science fiction and fantasy, single-title romance (with a special passion for historicals), and young adult and upper-level middle grade novels in all genres.

When she is not busy selling books, Kristin attempts to play golf & tennis. She also enjoys playing Bridge (where she is the youngest person in her club), and can be found hiking in the mountains with her husband and their dog Chutney.

Member: AAR, RWA, SFWA, SCBWI.
Please visit www.nelsonagency.com for submission guidelines and her popular blog Pub Rants for her latest post: http://nelsonagency.com/pub-rants/. Kristin can also be found on Twitter @agentkristinNLA and on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/agentkristin

Sharon Pelletier

pelletier-sharonSharon Pelletier grew up in the suburbs of Detroit, Michigan and moved to New York in 2009 to pursue a career in publishing. She joined Dystel & Goderich Literary Management in 2013 after working for Europa Editions, Vantage Press, and Barnes & Noble. At DGLM, in addition to growing her own client list, Sharon oversees digital projects and social media. While her interests are broad, Sharon’s list focuses on upmarket fiction, including suspense categories and book club fiction. She is also interested in narrative nonfiction and YA suspense.

Authors and Specialists


 

Jodi Anderson

Jodi Anderson is a published author with Harlequin and Bell Bridge Books. With a background that includes magazine/newspaper writing, novels, and novellas, Jodi is currently a teacher, writes fiction, presents workshops for writers and uses any opportunity to gain control of a microphone in front of a captive audience.

Carol Berg

Former software engineer, Carol Berg majored in mathematics at Rice University and computer science at the University of Colorado, so she wouldn’t have to write papers. But a friend duped her into writing fiction, and the habit ate her life. Carol’s fourteen epic fantasy novels have won national and international awards, including the Geffen Award, multiple Colorado Book Awards, and the Mythopoeic Fantasy Award for Adult Literature. They’ve been read, so readers tell her, on five continents, on a submarine under the Mediterranean, in the war zone of Iraq, and on the slopes of Denali. Her most recent series is a fantasy-mystery duology that begins with Dust and Light, the story of a sorcerer who draws portraits of the dead. In a starred review, Publishers Weekly calls it “a captivating and satisfying fantasy epic” and RT Book Reviews names it “outstanding” and a Top Pick. The second in the duology, Ash and Silver, was released in 2015. Carol camps, hikes, and bikes in Colorado and lives on the internet at http://www.carolberg.com.

Fleur Bradley

bradley-fleur Fleur (F.T.) Bradley is the author of the Double Vision trilogy (HarperCollins Children’s), a funny middle-grade spy adventure series School Library Journal calls, “a must-read for mystery fans, including reluctant readers.” She is the author of numerous short crime stories, and manages a freelance writing career along with a crime novel and middle-grade novel project. She lives in Colorado Springs with her husband and two daughters, and entirely too many cats. Find out more about Fleur at www.ftbradley.com, and follow her on Twitter @FTBradleyAuthor.

M. H. Boroson

M. H. Boroson’s historical fantasy novel THE GIRL WITH GHOST EYES was published at the end of 2015. In a Starred Review, Publishers Weekly called it “a brilliant tale of magic, monsters, and kung fu in the San Francisco Chinatown of 1898.”

It was Library Journal’s Debut of the Month, Goodreads newsletter’s Best Book of the Month, and Fantasy Book Critic’s #1 Debut of the Year. Barnes & Noble’s official blog said the novel is “a joy to read.” The AV Club compared it to the work of Hayao Miyazaki and called Boroson “a bright new voice in fantasy.” Bustle.com named it one the the 15 best Diverse Fantasy Novels. Libraryreads listed it in their Top Ten Books of the Month. Two sequels are under contract, and it is being developed as a television series.

Boroson has been documenting the oral histories of Chinese Americans since he was nine years old, paying special attention to ghost lore. He lives in Colorado Springs.

Becky Clark

Becky Clark

Becky Clark is the seventh of eight kids, which explains both her insatiable need for attention and her atrocious table manners. She likes to read funny books so it felt natural to write them, too. Her newest titles are Banana Bamboozle and Marshmallow Mayhem. She surrounds herself with quirky people and pets who end up as characters in her books. Her stout-hearted dog keeps her safe from menacing squirrels and autumn leaves, but not plastic bags. Those things are terrifying. Find out Becky’s least favorite words at http://beckyclarkbooks.com/bio and subscribe to her newsletter to win cool stuff, http://beckyclarkbooks.com/mailing.

Colleen Collins and Shaun Kaufman

Shaun Kaufman and Colleen CollinsShaun Kaufman (shaunkaufmanlaw.com) is a Denver, Colorado lawyer. Over three decades he has tried cases ranging from jaywalking to first-degree murder. Colleen Collins (colleencollinsbooks.com) is a private investigator and an award-winning author in romance and mystery.

Shaun and Colleen co-owned a private investigations agency for over a decade. They have also written several nonfiction books about private investigations and the law profession. Their blog, Guns, Gams, and Gumshoes (https://writingpis.wordpress.com) has been recognized by Ellery Queen magazine as one of the top 3 true-crime blogs, and the American Library Association’s online Booklist site twice named their blog its “Web Crush of the Week” during Mystery Month.

KL Cooper

klcooperKL Cooper spends most of her free hours writing PNR, but when she’s not doing that, she’s rocking social media for Pikes Peak Writers or creating new graphics and book covers for other writers through UnderCover Press. You can connect with her anywhere on social media using these handles: @KLCequalsME @UnderCoverKLC @FleshandFeather

Deb Courtney

deb_courtney_writers_nightDeb holds a degree in Fiction from the University of South Florida, where she was a Saunders Scholar in Fiction. She has had numerous short stories published and has worked as a freelance journalist. Her background includes marketing and public relations in several business sectors. Her most recent venture is Courtney Literary.

Laura DiSilverio

disilverio-laura Laura DiSilverio is a retired Air Force intelligence officer and author of 15 books. The first in her Book Club Mysteries, THE READAHOLICS AND THE FALCON FIASCO, hit stores in 2015. Her standalone suspense novel, THE RECKONING STONES, debuted in September 2016. She is President of Sisters in Crime, pens articles for Writer’s Digest, and teaches writing in various fora. She plots murders and parents teens in Colorado, trying to keep the two tasks separate.

Todd Fahnestock

fahnestock-todd TODD FAHNESTOCK won the New York Public Library’s Books for the Teen Age Award for one of his short stories and is the author of the YA bestseller Fairmist as well as The Wishing World. In 2006, Todd and Giles Carwyn wrote Heir of Autumn, Mistress of Winter and Queen of Oblivion, which hit the Denver Post bestseller list. Stories are his passion, but Todd’s greatest accomplishment is his quirky, fun-loving family. His latest novel, The Wishing World, began as a series of bedtime stories for his children.

JL Fields

fields-j-l JL Fields is a vegan lifestyle coach & educator, Food for Life instructor, personal chef, career coach, and a corporate consultant offering wellness training, brand representation, and strategic planning services. She is the author of VEGAN PRESSURE COOKING (Fair Winds Press, January 2015), co-author of VEGAN FOR HER: The Woman’s Guide to Being Healthy and Fit on a Plant-Based Diet (Da Capo Lifelong Books, July 2013), contributor to Running, Eating, Thinking: A Vegan Anthology (Lantern Books, May 2014), writes the monthly vegan dining review for the Colorado Springs Gazette and is a food, health and wellness freelance writer. She is the founder and organizer of Colorado Springs Nonfiction Writers.

A devoted culinary student, JL has studied at the Natural Gourmet Institute and Organic Avenue, and completed the Intensive Study Program at The Christina Pirello School of Natural Cooking and Integrative Health Studies. She is certified by – and on the faculty of – the Main Street Vegan Academy, is certified as a Food for Life Instructor by Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine and holds a Master of Science degree.

JL provides in-person vegan cooking services, lifestyle coaching and classes in Colorado Springs and the surrounding area as well as Skype and/or phone coaching throughout the U.S. and internationally. She provides career consulting for health and wellness coaches, chefs, and other professionals who want to develop their coaching practice. She is on the fitness faculty at the Center for Creative Leadership.

Therese Francis


Therese Francis, RTRP/AFSP, has been doing taxes for creative people for over 25 years. She has two books coming out in late 2016; one on bookkeeping and taxes for traditional authors and one for self-published authors.

Save

Save

LS Hawker

hawker-lisaLS Hawker is the author of the thrillers THE DROWNING GAME and BODY AND BONE, published by HarperCollins Witness Impulse, with one more title to be released in 2017. She has won many awards, and THE DROWNING GAME is a USA Today bestseller and finalist in the International Thriller Writer Thriller Awards in the Best First Novel category.

Hawker grew up in suburban Denver, indulging her worrisome obsession with true-crime books, and writing stories about anthropomorphic fruit and juvenile delinquents. She wrote her first novel at 14.

Armed with a B.S. in journalism from the University of Kansas, she had a radio show called “People Are So Stupid,” edited a trade magazine, and worked as a traveling Kmart portrait photographer, but never lost her passion for fiction writing.

Her extensive media background includes everything from public affairs director at a Denver radio station to video producer to website designer.

She’s got a hilarious, supportive husband, two brilliant daughters, and a massive music collection. She lives in Colorado but considers Kansas her spiritual homeland.

Visit LSHawker.com to view book trailers for THE DROWNING GAME and BODY AND BONE, listen to her podcast with daughter Chloe, The Lively Grind Cafe, and read about her adventures as a cocktail waitress, traveling Kmart portrait photographer, and witness to basement exorcisms.

Save

Travis Heermann

heermann-travis Freelance writer, novelist, award-winning screenwriter, editor, poker player, poet, biker, roustabout, Travis Heermann is a graduate of the Odyssey Writing Workshop and the author of Death Wind, The Ronin Trilogy, The Wild Boys, and Rogues of the Black Fury, plus short fiction pieces in anthologies and magazines such as Apex Magazine, Alembical, the Fiction River anthology series, Historical Lovecraft, and Cemetery Dance’s Shivers VII. As a freelance writer, he has produced a metric ton of role-playing game work both in print and online, including the Firefly Roleplaying Game, Battletech, Legend of Five Rings, d20 System, and the MMORPG, EVE Online.

He enjoys cycling, martial arts, torturing young minds with otherworldly ideas, and zombies. He has three long-cherished dreams: a produced screenplay, a NYT best-seller, and a seat in the World Series of Poker.

In 2016, he returned to the U.S. after living in New Zealand for a year with his family, toting more Middle Earth souvenirs and photos than is reasonable.

Patrick Hester

Patrick Hester

Patrick Hester is an author, blogger, podcaster and two-time Hugo Award winner. He lives in Colorado, writes science fiction and fantasy, and can usually be found hanging out on his Twitter or Facebook feeds. He first attended a PPW event in 2012 and has been going back ever since. His Functional Nerds and SF Signal weekly podcasts have both been nominated for multiple Parsec awards. His short fiction appears in several anthologies, and his longer works are available via Amazon.com. He writes a twice monthly column for the Kirkus Reviews blog, is a regular contributor to SF Signal and Functional Nerds and maintains his own website and blog at atfmb.com.

Kevin Ikenberry

Kevin IkenberryKevin Ikenberry’s head has been in the clouds since he was old enough to read. Ask him and he’ll tell you that he still wants to be an astronaut. Kevin has a diverse background in space and space science education. A former manager of the world-renowned U.S. Space Camp program in Huntsville, Alabama and a former executive of two Challenger Learning Centers, Kevin continues to work with space every day. Kevin lives in Colorado with his wife and two daughters. His home is seldom a boring place.

Kevin’s science fiction and horror short fiction has appeared internationally through Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine, Mindflights, Twisted Dreams Magazine and several anthologies. His debut novel, SLEEPER PROTOCOL, was released in January 2016, followed by a military science fiction novel RUNS IN THE FAMILY.

Kevin is a member of Fiction Foundry, Pikes Peak Writers, and is an alumna of the Superstars Writing Seminar.

He can be found online at www.kevinkenberry.com.

Darby Karchut

Darby KarchutDarby Karchut is an award-winning author, dreamer, and compulsive dawn greeter. A native of New Mexico, she now lives in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, where she runs in blizzards and bikes in lightning storms. When not dodging death by Colorado, Darby is busy writing for children, teens, and adults. Best thing ever: her YA series, GRIFFIN RISING, has been optioned for film.

She is represented by Amanda Rutter at Red Sofa Literary.

Her recent releases include: FINN’S CHOICE (book 4 in her middle grade series, The Adventures of Finn McCullen), UNHOLY BLUE (the sequel to THE STAG LORD, an urban fantasy series), and STONE’S HEART(contemporary romance).

Visit her at: www.darbykarchut.com

Sam Knight

Sam KnightAs well as being part of the WordFire Press Production Team, Sam Knight is Senior Editor for Villainous Press and author of four children’s books, three short story collections, two novels, and more than a dozen short stories, including a novella co-authored with Kevin J. Anderson.

A stay-at-home father, Sam attempts to be a full-time writer, but there are only so many hours left in a day after kids. Once upon a time, he was known to quote books the way some people quote movies, but now he claims having a family has made him forgetful, as a survival adaptation.

Shannon Lawrence

A fan of all things fantastical and frightening, Shannon Lawrence writes primarily horror and fantasy. Her stories can be found in anthologies and magazines, including Under the Bed, Devolution Z, and The Deep Dark Woods. When she’s not writing, she’s hiking through the wilds of Colorado and photographing her magnificent surroundings, where, coincidentally, there’s always a place to hide a body or birth a monster.

Stant Litore

An emerging voice in weird fiction, Stant Litore is the author of the series The Zombie Bible, which retells history (and the Bible) as a series of encounters with the restless dead, as well as The Ansible Stories, in which twenty-fifth century Islamic explorers become trapped in alien bodies on alien worlds. Litore has been featured in “The Year’s Best New Sci-Fi” at NPR (March 2014), as an Author Success Story on the Amazon.com homepage (November 2013), and in Weird Fiction Review and SF Signal. Litore recently released Write Characters Your Readers Won’t Forget, a handbook for young writers, and has been featured on the same topic in Jeff Vandermeer’s Wonderbook: The Illustrated Guide to Creating Imaginative Fiction. Asked what he does for a living, Litore says, “I chronicle zombie apocalypses from 3,000 years ago and I build colosseums for tyrannosaurs.”

Stant Litore lives in Aurora, Colorado with his wife and two daughters, where he is working on his next novel.

Chris Mandeville

Chris MandevilleChris writes science fiction/fantasy and nonfiction for writers. She served as Pikes Peak Writers’ president for 5 years, and has taught writing workshops for more than 10 years. Her books include Seeds: a post-apocalyptic adventure and 52 Ways to Get Unstuck: Exercises to Break Through Writer’s Block. chrismandeville.com

Jennie Marts

marts-jennie Jennie Marts is the USA TODAY Best-selling author of award-winning books filled with love, laughter, and always a happily ever after. Readers call her books “laugh out loud” funny and the “perfect mix of romance, humor, and steam.” Fic Central claimed one of her books was “the most fun I’ve had reading in years.”

She is living her own happily ever after in the mountains of Colorado with her husband, two dogs, and a parakeet that loves to tweet to the oldies. She’s addicted to Diet Coke, adores Cheetos, and believes you can’t have too many books, shoes, or friends.

Her books include the contemporary western romance Hearts of Montana series, the romantic comedy/ cozy mysteries of The Page Turners series, the hunky hockey-playing men in the Bannister family in the Bannister Brothers Books, and the small-town romantic comedies in the Lovestruck series of Cotton Creek Romances.

Jennie loves to hear from readers. Follow her on Facebook at Jennie Marts Books, or Twitter at @JennieMarts. Visit her at www.jenniemarts.com and sign up for her newsletter to keep up with the latest news and releases.

Pam McCutcheon

Pam McCutcheon is the author of romance novels and how-to books for writers under her own name, and the Demon Underground YA urban fantasy series under the name Parker Blue. Pam’s latest releases are updated e-book versions of her popular Writing the Fiction Synopsis and The Writer’s Brainstorming Kit (with Michael Waite) as well as self-published e-book versions of her romance backlist and fantasy short stories. Pam/Parker now works full-time as a writer, editor, speaker, and as the “Parker” half of Parker Hayden Media, an assisted self-publishing business. She can be found on the ’net at pammc.com or parkerblue.net.

Barbara Nickless

nickless-barbaraBestselling author Barbara Nickless lives in Colorado where she loves to snowshoe, cave, hike and drink single malt Scotch—usually not at the same time. Her first novel, Blood on the Tracks, is the start of a new thriller series. Hank Phillippi Ryan calls the book ‘Beautifully written and heartbreakingly intense,’ while Jeffery Deaver promises ‘… you’ll fall in love with one of the best characters to come along in modern thriller fiction, Sydney Rose Parnell.’

Megan Rutter

rutter-megan
Mummies, skeletons and corpses oh my. Megan Rutter started her professional life working as a forensic anthropologist and ancient historian. After years of teaching other professors’ classes and putting murdered children back together rather than working on her focus, ancient remains, Megan left the field to pursue a career as a writer. She now lives on a sustainable agriculture research farm with her husband, daughter and a menagerie of animals where she is a full time farmer, research assistant, mother and writer. Happily for Megan she can still fill her novels with mummies, skeletons and corpses.

David R. Slayton

slayton-davidDavid R. Slayton grew up in Guthrie, Oklahoma, where finding fantasy novels was pretty challenging and finding fantasy novels with diverse characters was downright impossible. He now lives in Denver, Colorado, and writes the books he always wanted to read: fantasy, epic, ya, but always diverse. He is represented by Lane Heymont of the Tobias Agency.

Robert Spiller

Besides being a master of space and time, Robert Spiller is the author of the Bonnie Pinkwater mystery series: The Witch of Agnesi, A Calculated Demise, Irrational Numbers, Radical Equations. and Napier’s Bones. His math teacher/sleuth uses mathematics and her knowledge of historic mathematicians to solve murders in the small Colorado town of East Plains. A retired mathematician, Robert lives in Colorado Springs, Colorado with his wife Barbara.

Gregg Taylor

Gregg TaylorGregg Taylor is a writer, performer and podcaster. He has published novels, interactive children’s books, graphic novels and an absurd number of full-cast audio drama programs in the style of the golden age of radio. He is the Chief Bottle Washer of the Decoder Ring Theatre podcast and creator of The Red Panda, the masked protector of 1930s Toronto, and the detective series Black Jack Justice, and has won both the Podcast Award for Cultural/Arts Programming, and the Parsec Award, for excellence in Speculative Fiction podcasting. He is a great believer in the power of the spoken word.

Michael R. Underwood

underwood-michael-rMichael R. Underwood is the author of the Ree Reyes series (Geekomancy, Celebromancy, Attack the Geek, Hexomancy), as well as Shield and Crocus, The Younger Gods, and Genrenauts, a genre-bending series of novellas. By day, he’s the North American Sales & Marketing Manager for Angry Robot Books.

Mike grew up devouring stories in all forms, from comics to video games, tabletop RPGs, movies, and books. Always books. He holds a B.A. in Creative Mythology and in East Asian Studies from Indiana University and a M.A. in Folklore Studies from the University of Oregon.

In years past, when his life was not scheduled around writing deadlines, he danced Argentine Tango and was an active member of the Society for Creative Anachronism, studying historical martial arts. Mike has worked at a hobby game store, a university Folklore archive, and has been a web design teacher, a bear-builder, a bookseller, an independent publishers’ representative, and more.

Mike lives in Baltimore with his wife and their ever-growing library. In his rapidly-vanishing free time, he makes pizzas from scratch and geeks out on comics & games. He is also a co-host on the Hugo Award-Finalist The Skiffy and Fanty Show and Speculate! The Podcast for Writers, Readers, and Fans. You can learn more at michaelrunderwood.com and talk to him on Twitter @MikeRUnderwood.

Lana Williams

Lana Williams is an Amazon bestselling author who writes historical romance filled with mystery, adventure, and a pinch of paranormal to stir things up. Filled with a love of books from an early age, Lana put pen to paper and decided happy endings were a must in any story she created.

Her latest series is The Seven Curses of London, set in Victorian times, and shares stories of men who attempt to battle the ills of London, and the ladies they fall in love with, who truly give them something worth fighting for.

Her first medieval trilogy is set in England and follows heroes seeking vengeance only to find love when they least expect it. The second trilogy begins on the Scottish border and follows the second generation of the de Bremont family.

The Secret Trilogy, which shares stories set in Victorian London, follows three lords injured in an electromagnetic experiment that went terribly wrong and the women who help heal them through the power of love.

She writes in the Rocky Mountains with her husband, two growing sons, and two labs, and loves hearing from readers.

Lana loves hearing from readers! Stop by her website at www.lanawilliams.net and say hello!