We are hard at work on Pikes Peak Writers Conference 2020. Check back later for more conference faculty. You can see the 2019 faculty list here.
The dates: April 17-19, 2020 (with Prequel on April 16)
We are hard at work on Pikes Peak Writers Conference 2020. Check back later for more conference faculty. You can see the 2019 faculty list here.
The dates: April 17-19, 2020 (with Prequel on April 16)
Delilah S. Dawson is the New York Times-bestselling author of Star Wars: Phasma, The Perfect Weapon, and the upcoming Galaxy’s Edge: Black Spire, as well as the Hit series, the Blud series, Servants of the Storm, and the Shadow series, written as Lila Bowen and beginning with Wake of Vultures. She’s the co-creator of the Tales of Pell with Kevin Hearne, beginning with Kill the Farm Boy. Her creator-owned comics include Ladycastle, Sparrowhawk, and Star Pig, and she’s written in the worlds of Marvel Action: Spider-Man, Star Wars Adventures, Star Wars Forces of Destiny, The X-Files Case Files, Adventure Time, Rick and Morty, and Labyrinth. She’s won 3 RT awards and has received numerous starred reviews. Delilah lives in Tampa with her family. Find her online at whimsydark.com and on Twitter, @DelilahSDawson, where she is known for writing tips and her dog’s soulful #borkbook poetry.
A retired Air Force intelligence officer, Laura DiSilverio is the national bestselling and award-winning author of 21 mystery, suspense and young adult sci-fi novels. Her series include the Swift Investigations PI series (Minotaur), Ballroom Dance Mysteries (writing as Ella Barrick), Southern Beauty Shop Mysteries (writing as Lila Dare), Mall Cop Mysteries and Readaholics Book Club Mysteries (both Berkeley Prime Crime). Library Journal named her standalone suspense novel, Close Call, one of the Top Five mysteries of 2016, and The Reckoning Stones (2015) won the Colorado Book Award for Mystery in 2016. Incubation, the first book of her young adult dystopian trilogy is an Amazon bestseller. A Past President of Sisters in Crime, she speaks and teaches widely on writing craft, the publishing life, and intelligence analysis. Recently an empty nester, she plots murders in Colorado and resists (mostly) the urge to be a long-distance helicopter parent for her college kids.
A New York Times bestselling author, Mary Jo Putney was born in Upstate New York with a reading addiction, a condition with no known cure. Her entire writing career is an accidental byproduct of buying a computer for other purposes. She has won numerous awards, has had ten RWA RITA nominations, two RITA wins, and received RWA’s 2013 Nora Roberts Lifetime Achievement Award. Though best known for historical romances, she has also written contemporary women’s fiction, paranormal historical, and YA historical time travel. Her stories invariably contain history, romance, and cats. And, she’s so distractible that she’s amazed that she ever finishes a book.
Chuck Wendig is the New York Times bestselling author of Star Wars: Aftermath, as well as the Miriam Black thrillers, the Atlanta Burns books, and Zer0es/Invasive, alongside other works across comics, games, film, and more. He was a finalist for the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer and an alum of the Sundance Screenwriters Lab, and he served as the co-writer of the Emmy-nominated digital narrative Collapsus. He is also known for his popular blog, terribleminds, and books about writing such as Damn Fine Story. He lives in Pennsylvania with his family.
Spur Award winning author Reavis Z. Wortham pens two series, the critically acclaimed Red River historical mysteries, and the Sonny Hawke contemporary westerns. Kirkus Reviews listed his first novel, The Rock Hole, as one of their Top 12 Mysteries of 2011. True West Magazine included the 5th Red River novel, Dark Places, as one of 2015’s Top 12 Modern Westerns. Wortham’s new high octane contemporary western thriller series featuring Texas Ranger Sonny Hawke kicked off in 2017 with the publication of Hawke’s Prey. The second book in that series, Hawke’s War, won the 2019 Western Writers Association’s Spur Award in the Best Mass Market Paperback category.
Ty Drago is the critically-acclaimed author of eight published novels, including the Undertakers Series for Middle Graders, which has been optioned for a feature film and Torq, a new YA/ SF superhero adventure. He is also the founder, managing editor, and publisher of Allegory (www.allegoryezine.com), an award-winning online magazine of SF, Fantasy & Horror. Together with his wife, Helene, he is the producer off the Legacy family of podcasts, which include Legacy: The Novel Writing Experience and the new Legacy: The Immigrant Experience in America. He lives and works in South Jersey, just outside of Philadelphia. Check out www.tydrago.com and www.twooldfolksdoingstuff.com if you want to know more!
Claire Eddy is an executive editor at Tor/Forge Books and has been with the company for over 30 years. Working primarily in fantasy, science fiction, and horror, she has worked with such authors as Jacqueline Carey, Juliet Marillier, and Sherrilyn Kenyon and is always looking for that new best voice to bring to readers.
Seeking: fantasy, horror, and science fiction
Tom Hoeler is an editor at Del Rey Books, a science-fiction/fantasy imprint of Penguin Random House. Since 2014, Tom has worked across a wide spectrum of projects and authors within speculative fiction. Currently, he focuses on a variety of pop culture brands on licensed book programs from Star Wars, Blizzard, Stranger Things, Wizards of the Coast, and more. An avid reader of space opera, and all facets of fantasy publishing in particular; Tom’s always looking for that next great character to get attached to and follow on an epic journey through both familiar and unfamiliar worlds.
LOOKING FOR: Character focused space opera. Engaging magical fantasy. Vibrant new voices across SFF that are looking to challenge and reinvent well-worn tropes of the genre, or provide fresh perspectives on classic stories
Claire McKinney is the founder and CEO of Claire McKinneyPR, LLC and Plum Bay Publishing, LLC. She also authored the book Do You Know What A Book Publicist Does? A Guide for Creating Your Own Campaigns. For thirteen years, Claire worked in New York City’s traditional publishing houses, including Little, Brown and Company; Henry Holt & Company; Bloomsbury; Hyperion Books for Children; Miramax; and Putnam. When she left the corporate world to start her PR business in 2019, she was the VP/Director of Publicity at Henry Holt.
Angie Hodapp is the Director of Literary Development at Nelson Literary Agency. She holds a BA in English and secondary education and an MA in English and communication development. A graduate of the Publishing Institute at the University of Denver, she has worked in professional writing, editing, and education for more than twenty years. A frequent presenter at writing conferences and events, she loves helping writers improve their craft and learn about the ever-changing world of publishing.
Becky LeJeune is an associate agent at Bond Literary Agency, a Denver-based agency run by Sandra Bond. Prior to joining the agency, Becky spent time working as a bookseller, a freelance cookbook editor, and an acquisitions editor for a small, regional press. She is a graduate of the Denver Publishing Institute.
Becky is actively building her client list, and is interested in cookbooks and YA and adult submissions in the following genres: horror, mystery/suspense/thriller, historical fiction, sci fi, fantasy, and general fiction. She enjoys plot driven narratives with unique settings, strong world building, and well-developed characters.
Maureen Moretti began her publishing career as an intern with several prestigious New York City literary agencies before joining P.S. Literary as an associate agent. She holds a B.A. from Saint Mary’s College of California, and attended the Columbia Publishing Course. Maureen is looking for narrative driven non-fiction with a gripping voice and a unique hook, such as unusual or untold biographies, commentary on culture, both mainstream and subversive, and new interpretations of history. She is also actively searching for fiction, romance, upmarket and commercial women’s fiction, select science fiction, thrillers, mysteries, and literary fiction. She loves new perspectives on old stories, characters that resonate and stay with you, novels about the zeitgeist, non-fiction that teaches you by accident and loves a happily ever after.
Seeking genres: Mainstream commercial, Romance, Romance Suspense, Science Fiction, Women’s Fiction
Devin Ross is an agent with New Leaf Literary & Media, Inc. After graduating from Lawrence University, she went on to get her Certificate in Publishing from the Denver Publishing Institute. After starting her publishing career at Penguin Random House, she found her longterm home at New Leaf representing both children’s and adult titles. She is looking for anything that helps her see her own in a different light. Devin loves books that teach her things, whether purposeful or through the telling of a story, it doesn’t matter. She is a lifelong learner and is always looking to expand her horizons. At this time, she is specifically looking to grow her list Contemporary Romance, Women’s fiction, nonfiction, and anything with a social justice tilt to it.
Seeking: YA: Magical Realism, nonfiction, Contemporary with Social Justice. Adult: Contemporary Romance, RomComs, Women’s fiction, Literary fiction, Nonfiction
Lesley Sabga has worked as an editorial intern and freelancer for multiple publishing houses. She’s also been working for The Seymour Agency since 2014. Starting out as an eager intern, she worked her way up to a Literary Assistant, and in the fall of 2017, Lesley became an Associate Agent with The Seymour Agency.
Lesley loves intricate and vivid world-building and character driven plots. She is actively acquiring MG, YA, and Adult fantasy/science fiction and she is always down to read a dark and twisty suspense or thriller featuring strong, female protagonists. She also loves a classic happily-ever-after romance or curling up with a good mystery. She is also interested in acquiring narrative non-fiction.
When she is not rescuing animals or searching for her next debut author, Lesley is a constant occupant at local bookstores in Colorado Springs and is a self-proclaimed coffee aficionado.
Seeking: Fantasy, Middle Grade Fiction, Mystery, Romance, Science Fiction, YA Mainstream, YA Romance
Abby founded The Lark Group after a decade in publishing at John Wiley & Sons, Sourcebooks, and Browne & Miller Literary Associates. She’s worked with and edited bestselling and award-winning authors as well as major brands. She loves working with her clients and new authors, and her agenting style is agile and editorially focused, with an eye towards partnership and publishing innovation. A zealous reader who loves her iPad and the ebooks on it, she still can’t resist the lure of a print book. Abby’s personal library of beloved titles runs the gamut from literary newbies and classics, to cozy mysteries, to sappy women’s fiction, to dark and twisted thrillers. A magna cum laude graduate of Wellesley College, Abby spends her weekends—when she’s not reading—cooking and hiking with her husband and son. Find her @BookySaul on Twitter.
ADULT ONLY. Women’s fiction, historical fiction, domestic suspense/female-driven thrillers, mysteries, literary
Debbie Maxwell Allen writes young adult fiction in the Rockies. She teaches workshops for writers on the craft of writing, productivity, and how to use Scrivener and Vellum software. When not writing, she keeps tabs on her husband, five children, two cats, and the Most Adorable Grandson. You can catch her blog of resources for writers at http://writingwhilethericeboils.blogspot.com/. She also offers substantive editing and proofreading for writers. Contact Debbie at firstname.lastname@example.org for a free, no-obligation 1000-word sample edit.
Amy Armstrong has been doing a little bit of everything in the writing community since she came to Denver in 2017. She participates in live storytelling and readings throughout the Denver area. Locations include BookBar, The Mercury Cafe, and the Whittier Cafe. She volunteers for Pikes Peak Writers as Coordinator of Social Media and was recognized as the 2019 Volunteer of the Year. To hone her craft, she participates in the Denver Fiction Writers critique group, online workshops (most recently with Margaret Dilloway through Women’s Fiction Writers of America) and local writing workshops.
Caitlin Berve is an author, editor, and speaker with an MFA in Creative Writing and Poetics. As the owner of Ignited Ink Writing, she helps authors transform their writing so it lingers with readers because writing that lingers gets remembered and recommended to others. She runs the Boulder Writers Alliance critique group and quarterly programs, is on the Colorado Independent Publishers Association (CIPA) board, and actively participates in Writers Idea Factory and 30th Street Fiction writers groups. She has been published in multiple literary magazines and helped put together both of her critique group’s short story anthologies. When she isn’t writing or reading, Caitlin is running the Colorado trails, folding origami, or exploring local activities.
Frank Biro received his Bachelor of Science from Drexel University and his MD at Harvard Medical School. Completed dual residencies in internal medicine and pediatrics, he barded in Internal Medicine, Pediatrics, and Adolescent Medicine. Currently Professor of Pediatrics at University of Cincinnati, he’s also on faculty in the Division of Adolescent and Transition Medicine for the past 35+ years.
Trai Cartwright, MFA, is a 25-year entertainment industry veteran and writing and producing specialist. She is a screenwriter, producer, and teaches screen and TV writing, arts entrepreneurship, and production management at UC Center, University of Denver’s MA professional creative writing program, and at Western State University’s low residency MFA program.
Trai spent fifteen years in Los Angeles working in Business Development and as a Studio Development Executive who consulted on thousands of screenplays for HBO, 20th Century Fox, Paramount, Universal, and New Line.
Trai was on the producing team for three independent movies (Dinner Rush, Offshore, Trap). She was assistant director of Leonardo DiCaprio’s online ventures, the Hollywood liaison for a massively multi-player online role-playing game company, and was the Manager of Fox Mobile Studios for 20th Century Fox. As a screenwriter, four of Trai’s screenplays were optioned to Academy and Emmy award-winning producers.
Upon moving to Colorado in 2008, Trai began her career as an educator across the state. She has taught creative writing (fiction), screenwriting, and producing at nearly a dozen Colorado colleges, as well as for dozens of writers conferences, writers workshops, and film organizations.
She recently finished her tenure as the President of Women in Film and Media Colorado. (www.wifmco.org)
In 2016, Trai produced her first Colorado-based feature (Stadium Anthems). She is currently the screenwriter on Secret Ellington (2016 semifinalist in the Nicholl Fellowship, Big Break, and Special Honor in the Screencraft Public Domain contests), produced the short film Sundown Road and Hidden Tigers, a docu-series for Red Unicorn Films.
A highly functioning chocoholic, Becky Clark lives in Denver and 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. She writes the Dunne Diehl novels, the Mystery Writer’s Mysteries, the upcoming Crossword Puzzle Mysteries, and “Eight Weeks to a Complete Novel: How To Write Faster, Write Better, And Be More Organized.” Visit her online at www.BeckyClarkBooks.com.
Liz Colter has followed her heart through a wide variety of careers including draft-horse farmer, field paramedic, Outward Bound instructor, athletic trainer, and roller-skating waitress, among other curious choices. She is a two-time Colorado Book Award winner in Science Fiction/Fantasy and her short stories have been published in a wide variety of magazines and anthologies. She writes contemporary and dark fantasy as L. D. Colter and epic fantasy as L. Deni Colter.
Deb 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 more than 20 years in Technical Project Management.
Her consulting firm, Courtney Literary, is about to launch TaleWinds, featuring Regatta Project Management Software for Writers. She hosts the popular “Write Drunk, Edit Sober” improv writing series monthly in Colorado Springs.
Rachel Craft writes middle grade, young adult, and speculative fiction. Her work has appeared in publications such as Cricket, Cast of Wonders, and Young Explorer’s Adventure Guide, as well as the award-winning anthology Found. She is the co-editor of the upcoming Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers anthology, to be published in 2020. She lives and writes in Louisville, Colorado.
Dr. Crowder has 30+ years of experience in aerospace systems which includes 25 years in research and development of artificial intelligence applications; delivering his first Neural Network system in 1995 and his first fuzzy system in 1993. Dr. Crowder holds a PhD in Electrical Engineering in Chaos Theory, an MS in Applied Math in Probability Theory, an MS in Electrical Engineering in Signal Processing and a BS in Electrical Engineering. He published his first technical paper in 1988 and has over 120 journal and conference publications. In 1989 he published his first poem and has 8 poetry books available on Amazon. He has published 5 technical books in artificial intelligence and systems engineering with his daughter, Dr. Shelli Friess. His current employer is Colorado Engineering Inc. where he is a systems fellow and devotes his time to advanced artificial intelligence research. His work has been written up in Popular Science and he’s been interviewed as part of the Consciousness Podcast. A prolific writer, Dr. Crowder is currently starting his newest project, a series of three science fiction books about artificial intelligence and robots titled 1) When Robots Hug, 2) When Robots Cry, 3) When Robots Sing.
Katie Day is a hard of hearing writer who always has her nose in a book or is curled up in the corner of a room writing away on her laptop. She loves to travel and hike with her hubby, as well as get into mischief (hey, we all do!).
Kate Jonuska is an indie author, freelance writer, yoga teacher, proud nerd and native Coloradan. Her freelance work has appeared in top-notch regional publications like the Denver Post and Boulder Weekly. On the fiction side, her short stories have been Pushcart Prize-nominated and her first novel, Transference, was a finalist for the 2017 BookLife Prize. Kate has also edited anthologies, taught workshops and is the author of The Dictionary of Fiction Critique. Learn more about Kate on her website (www.katejonuska.com) or on Twitter (@kjonuska).
Darby Karchut is a multi-award winning author, dreamer, and compulsive dawn greeter. A proud 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 wrangling words. Her books include the Colorado Book Award winner Del Toro Moon and the best-selling “Finn Finnegan” series. Coolest thing ever: her YA debut novel, Griffin Rising, has been optioned for film. Her upcoming releases include The Red Casket (Early 2020 from Owl Hollow Press) and On a Good Horse (Summer 2020 from Owl Hollow Press). Visit the author at www.darbykarchut.com
Peter M. (Pete) Klismet, Jr. is a U.S. Navy Vietnam veteran and worked for the Ventura Police Department before entering the FBI in 1979. He was trained to be a Firearms Instructor, Hostage Negotiator, and was in the first cadre of Special Agents chosen to be trained in “Psychological Profiling.” Pete received extensive training in profiling over the years, and worked on numerous cases. He was named the 1999 International Law Enforcement Officer of the Year for solving a large multi-national fraud case. Following his retirement in 1999, Pete accepted a position as Department Chair and Associate Professor of the Criminal Justice Department at Pikes Peak Community College. Now retired from that, he continues to do training and consulting work for law enforcement and private companies and law firms. He has authored four award-winning books.
DeAnna Knippling is a professional freelance writer and editor, with around 40 books written for herself and her many ghostwriting clients and her multiple pen names, because life isn’t complicated enough already. Under her own name, she writes gothic horror and fantasy, but she also writes crime, sci-fi, mystery, suspense, adventure, and other genres for her clients. Her latest book is The Knight of Shattered Dreams, an “Alice’s Adventures in Underland” book.
You can find her at www.WonderlandPress.com.
Mary Robinette Kowal is the author of the “Lady Astronaut” duology and historical fantasy novels: “The Glamourist Histories” series and Ghost Talkers. She’s a member of the award-winning podcast Writing Excuses and has received the Astounding Award for Best New Writer, four Hugo awards, the Romantic Times Reviews award for Best Fantasy Novel, the Nebula, and Locus awards. Her novel Calculating Stars is one of only eighteen novels to win the Hugo, Nebula and Locus awards in a single year.
As a professional puppeteer and voice actor (SAG/AFTRA), Mary Robinette has performed for LazyTown (CBS), the Center for Puppetry Arts, Jim Henson Pictures, and founded Other Hand Productions. She records fiction for authors such as Seanan McGuire, Cory Doctorow and John Scalzi. Mary Robinette lives in Nashville with her husband Rob and over a dozen manual typewriters. Visit maryrobinettekowal.com.
Karen is a freelance editor for award-winning & bestselling authors who’ve hit 1-9 in their Amazon categories, a pitch coach, script doctor, cruise ship speaker, a produced screenwriter and award-winning author of many genres. She’s worked with a Hollywood agent and top New York agents. www.karenalbrightlin.com
Kelley J.P. Lindberg has been a freelance writer for longer than she cares to admit. Although she started her career writing best-selling how-to books about software, she eventually came to her senses, got out of the software industry, and began writing articles and essays for magazines like Continuum, Sail, Cruising World, Simple Scrapbooks, Paper Crafts, Salt Lake Magazine, and American Baby; publishers such as Fodor’s Travel Guides; the anthology Chicken Soup for the Wine Lover’s Soul, and literary magazines such as In Layman’s Terms. She is in demand as a contract medical and business writer, and she has ghost-written several how-to crafting books and managed several special issue magazines. In her so-called free time, she writes adult and YA fiction, with her most recent short stories published in 99 Pine Street, The Citron Review, and in the Tellables app for the Amazon Alexa platform.
Stant Litore is the author of Ansible, The Running of the Tyrannosaurs, The Zombie Bible, and Dante’s Heart. Besides science fiction and fantasy, he has written the writers’ classes Write Worlds Your Readers Won’t Forget and Write Characters Your Readers Won’t Forget, as well as Lives of Unstoppable Hope and Lives of Unforgetting, and has been featured in Jeff Vandermeer’s Wonderbook: An Illustrated Guide to Creating Imaginative Fiction. He has served as a developmental editor for Westmarch Publishing and holds a Ph.D. in English. He lives in Aurora, Colorado with his wife and three children and is currently at work on his next novel.
Jennifer Lovett Herbranson has been a communicator, marketer and public relations professional since 2001. She has party-planned for US ambassadors, written speech inputs for the President (of the United States), eaten Taco Bell with Jimmy Kimmel and danced with Willie Nelson. She has been quoted by the New York Times, CNN, FoxNews, and Time Magazine, and wrote her first novel in the second grade. With her husband, she co-founded Writer Nation, because she wanted to stop the madness that is AUTHORS MUST MARKET EVERYWHERE ALL THE TIME! She envisions a world where every writer is an author first, and a smart, savvy marketer second, and plans to teach you how to do it.
Because she loves school, Jenny holds like a million degrees from schools you may or may not have heard of, and blogs for Pikes Peak Writers. She judges contests for the Utah League of Writers, is the communications director for Washington Romance Writers, and currently freelances with Literary Agent Ethan Ellenberg on his new Royalty Reminder business. A born Alabama girl, Jenny Kate bleeds crimson and white. When she isn’t writing or teaching about marketing, she travels the world looking for the world’s best vegan sandwich. So far, tofu banh mi in Hoi An, Vietnam, is winning that race.
Chris Mandeville writes science fiction/fantasy and nonfiction for writers. She lives in Colorado with her family and her service dog, Finn. Chris can write anywhere, but her usual spot is a comfy chair at home in the Rocky Mountains where the only sound is the wind in the trees, her coffee cup is in reach, and Finn is snoozing by her feet. She loves to work with other writers, and has been teaching writing workshops for fifteen years. Her published works include the YA time travel trilogy, “In Real Time” (Quake, Shake, and Break), Seeds: a post-apocalyptic adventure and 52 Ways to Get Unstuck: Exercises to Break Through Writer’s Block. To learn more about Chris and her works-in-progress, and to join her Reader’s Group, visit chrismandeville.com.
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.” Her books include the contemporary western romances of the “Cowboys of Creedence” and the “Hearts of Montana” series, the cozy mysteries of “The Page Turners” series, the hunky hockey-playing men in the “Bannister Brothers Books”, and the small-town romantic comedies in the “Cotton Creek Romance” series. She is living her own happily ever after in the mountains of Colorado with her husband, two dogs, and a parakeet who loves to tweet to the oldies. To learn more, follow her on Facebook at Jennie Marts Books, or Twitter at @JennieMarts or visit herwebsite, www.jenniemarts.com and sign up for her newsletter.
Pam McCutcheon is the author of romantic comedy, paranormal romance, fantasy short stories, and how-to books for writers under her own name, and the “Demon Underground” YA urban fantasy series under the name Parker Blue. After many years of working for the military as enlisted, officer, and civil service successively, she left her industrial engineering job and is now working full-time as a writer, editor, speaker, and as the “Parker” half of Parker Hayden Media, an assisted self-publishing business.
Books have been Kendra’s escape for as long as she can remember. She used to hide fantasy novels behind her government textbook in high school, and she wrote most of her first novel during a semester of college algebra.
Older and wiser now (but just as nerdy) she is the author of the Mark of the Least series, a series of fairytales with main characters who have disabilities. Her experience with partial paraplegia has shown her that you don’t have to be able to swing a sword in order to save the world. If she’s not writing, she’s reading, and if she’s not reading, she’s playing video games.
She lives in Denver with her very tall husband, their book loving progeny, and a lazy black monster masquerading as a service dog.
Susan Mitchell embraces folklore, ghosts and monsters. She tunes into that wavelength to write dark fiction, horror and thrillers. Her work has appeared in literary magazines including George and Mertie’s Place, Poetry Motel, The Gathering Storm, and Wordwrights. Susan calls the Southwest home and has a degree in English from Northern Arizona University. She is currently based in New Mexico where she is the Senior Marketing and Social Media Specialist. She has written and produced projects for TLC, ABC, NBC, CBS and Telemundo affiliates. She is a frequent public speaker, and her voice can be heard on a variety of television and radio commercials. Susan is currently completing work on a darkly humorous horror series and supernatural thriller.
Kristin Owens earned a Ph.D. in Higher Education and held academic positions at Penn State, University of Maryland, and University of Alaska Anchorage. She also taught a variety of collegiate-level subjects (from ballroom dancing to graduate statistics) at numerous institutions and was awarded 2016-17 Teacher of the Year by Aims Community College students.
Now a full-time writer in Colorado, Kristin has over 75 published articles and essays. Her first fiction manuscript was selected as a Judges’ Favorite in the 2017 Ink & Insights contest. Her essay, WAR BRIDE, won Honorable Mention for the 2018 New Millennium Writing Awards and was a finalist for the 2019 New Letters’ Conger Beasley Jr. Award for Nonfiction. Her piece, AIR SUPPLY, is included in the award-winning Colorado Book of the Year, RISE! in 2020.
By combining her love of teaching and writing, Kristin’s a frequent workshop instructor, conference presenter, and lecturer. Her high-energy presentations are geared towards motivating new writers to stick with it. Her campy women’s fiction is represented by literary agent Madelyn Burt at Stonesong, New York City. Her cruise ship lectures are booked through Peel Talent Agency in the UK.
James Persichetti is a writer, freelance developmental editor, and teacher for writing craft workshops. He writes about queer characters going on adventures without focusing on queer issues. Prior to his current position, he worked for a top literary agency, vetting submissions and selling foreign rights. His debut, THE SAPLING’S CURSE, is a gay romance Arthurian legends graphic novel, illustrated by Lao, and will publish in 2023 with HMH. His short fiction will appear in the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers 2020 Anthology. When not writing, he enjoys dabbling in foreign languages, including Italian and Japanese. He can be found on Twitter @JPPersichetti.
Fascinated by magic since pine cones could be fireballs, C. R. Rowenson (Clark) is a blogger and writing coach that studies magic building like others study oil-painting. His prime directive is to help storytellers of all kinds of craft and repair the magic systems in their stories and you can visit crrowenson.com to witness, fuel, or join in his obsession.
Colorado native Rebecca Rowley, satirist and joker of all trades, captures life’s absurdities on the page and keeps them there until the proper authorities arrive. She is the author of the cozy comedy memoir How to Be Funny & Make People Fat and the humor anthology The 27 Hour Day. When not entertaining the masses or terrorizing the villagers, she edits for a local publisher and utilizes her MBA to develop programs to support fellow authors and humorists in building their careers.
Aimie K. Runyan writes to celebrate history’s unsung heroines. She has written five historical novels, including the internationally bestselling Daughters of the Night Sky and Promised to the Crown. Her most recent novel, Girls on the Line is a Historical Novel Society Editor’s Choice for February 2019. She is active as an educator and speaker in the writing community and beyond. In 2019 Aimie was nominated for the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writer of the Year award and a Colorado Book Award. Her upcoming novel (June 2020), Across the Winding River, is a return to WWII. In addition to Pikes Peak Writers, she is a member of the Tall Poppy Writers marketing collective, Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers, the Women’s Fiction Writers Association, and the Historical Novel Society. She lives in Colorado with her two (usually) adorable children. To learn more about Aimie, please visit www.aimiekrunyan.com.
David grew up in Guthrie, Oklahoma, where finding fantasy novels was pretty challenging and finding fantasy novels with diverse characters was downright impossible. Now he lives in Denver, Colorado and write the books he always wanted to read. His debut, White Trash Warlock, will be published in Fall 2020 from Blackstone Publishing.
Stephen has been writing for ten years and completed two novels and a number of short stories. He has an amazing set of personal rejections from major SF and Fantasy publications. He’s published (online) a short collection of six-word stories and a microfiction paragraph. He writes SF and Fantasy, and historical fiction, with a special interest in the British Royal Navy in the Age of Sail. In 2016, he graduated with an MFA in Creative Writing (Genre Fiction) from Western Colorado University. Since 2017, he has been the Alumni Relations Coordinator for Western’s Graduate Program in Creative Writing. By day, he dabbles in the arcane arts of enterprise architecture and digital engineering.
Fran Wilde’s novels and short stories have been finalists for four Nebula awards, two Hugo Awards, and a World Fantasy Award. They include her Nebula/Andre Norton- and Compton Crook-winning debut novel, Updraft (Tor, 2015); its sequels, Cloudbound and Horizon; the double-starred middle-grade novel Riverland (Abrams); and the Hugo-, Locus-, and Nebula-Finalist novelette “The Jewel and Her Lapidary.” Her short stories and essays appear in The Washington Post, The New York Times, Asimov’s, Tor.com, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Shimmer, Nature, and Uncanny Magazine. Fran is the Director of the Genre MFA Concentration at Western Colorado University. You can find her on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and at franwilde.net.
Jerilyn has been an avid reader and writer since she was little, all while growing up around the world, throwing herself into the Society for Creative Anachronism and larping, and publishing several articles while raising four kids. She was finally forced into becoming a full-time writer after her mermaid swim tail business closed. She’s currently ghost-writing a YA Urban Fantasy series and working on her own top-secret projects. J.F. Winstead is represented by Natalie Lakosil of Bradford Literary Agency, who’s about to start pitching her debut MG historical fantasy interactive novel. Whew!
Bowen Gillings is an award-winning author writing to appease the story demons in his head. A former president of Pikes Peak Writers, he currently hosts Open Critique and Writing with a View each month. He has been featured in Allegory e-zine, Voices and Views and Rocky Mountain Writers podcasts, Ghosts of Downtown, Writing is Art, and the Writing from the Peak blog. He holds a Master of Education in Adult Education and is a travel enthusiast, nature lover, and closeted RPG nerd. He enjoys cooking big meals for family and friends, hiking wooded mountain trails, and seeking Zen through mixed martial arts. Born in Wisconsin, he grew up in the Black Hills of South Dakota, matriculated in Minnesota, and then bounced around Europe with the Army. He’s lived on both coasts, danced on the Great Wall of China, and driven a Volvo from Alaska to Louisiana before settling in Colorado with his wife and daughter. Check out his website at storiesbybowen.com and look for his latest work in the Fresh Starts anthology from Pikes Peak Writers due out in 2021.