Keynote Speakers


 

Anne Bishop

Anne lives with unicorns, dragons, and two shy parakeets. She is a New York Times bestselling author and the winner of multiple awards for the Novels of the Others, as well as the RT Book Reviews 2013 Career Achievement Award for her fantasy fiction, the RT Book Reviews 2017 Career Achievement Award for her urban fantasy fiction, and the William L. Crawford Memorial Fantasy Award for the Black Jewels Trilogy. Her first novel, Daughter of the Blood, was published in 1998 and is now celebrating its 20th year in print. Her most recent novel is Lake Silence, which she describes as a cozy thriller set in the world of the Others. Her next book is Wild Country (March 2019), another story set in the Others’ world. When she’s not writing, Anne enjoys gardening, reading, and music…and pondering how to get her imaginary friends into more trouble.

John Gilstrap

John Gilstrap

John is the New York Times bestselling author of Total Mayhem, Scorpion Strike, Final Target, Friendly Fire, Nick of Time, Against All Enemies, End Game, Soft Targets, High Treason, Damage Control, Threat Warning, Hostage Zero, No Mercy, Nathan’s Run, At All Costs, Even Steven, Scott Free and Six Minutes to Freedom.  Four of his books have been purchased or optioned for the Big Screen.  In addition, John has written four screenplays for Hollywood, adapting the works of Nelson DeMille, Norman McLean and Thomas Harris.  He will co-produce the film adaptation of his book, Six Minutes to Freedom, which should begin filming in 2018.  A frequent speaker at literary events, John also teaches seminars on suspense writing techniques at a wide variety of venues, from local libraries to The Smithsonian Institution.  Outside of his writing life, John is a renowned safety expert with extensive knowledge of explosives, weapons systems, hazardous materials, and fire behavior.  John lives in Fairfax, VA.

Rachel Howzell Hall

Rachel is a New York Times bestselling author of seven novels, including The Good Sister, co-written with James Patterson, and the critically acclaimed Detective Elouise Norton series. The New York Times called Lou Norton “a formidable fighter—someone you want on your side.” Lou was also included in The Guardian’s Top 10 Female Detectives in Fiction. Her newest novel, They All Fall Down (Forge), published in April 2019, pays homage to Agatha Christie’s And Then They Were None.  A featured writer on NPR’s acclaimed ‘Crime in the City’ series and the National Endowment for the Arts weekly podcast, Rachel has also served as a mentor in AWP’s Writer to Writer Program and is currently on the board of directors of the Mystery Writers of America. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and daughter.

Susan Wiggs

Susan Wiggs is an international #1 New York Times best-selling, award-winning author of more than fifty novels. Her work has been translated into two-dozen languages. She is a three-time winner of the RITA Award, the highest honor given for a work of romantic fiction. Wiggs has been featured in national and international media, including NPR’s Talk of the Nation. Her most recent novel is Between You and Me (William Morrow).

Acquiring Editors


 

Stacey Barney (G.P. Putnam’s Sons)

An Executive Editor at G.P. Putnam’s Sons BFYR, Stacey has edited the #1 New York Times bestselling The Wrath and the Dawn by Renée Ahdieh, Firebird by Misty Copeland, illustrated by Christopher Myers, as well as Ellen’s Broom by Kelly Starling Lyons, illustrated by Daniel Minter. She has also edited award-winning authors Kristin Levine, Tara Sullivan, as well as New York Times bestsellers The Reader by Traci Chee and Happy by Pharrell Williams.

LOOKING FOR:  literary-commercial Middle Grade and Young Adult and select picture books and nonfiction. Not currently acquiring science fiction.

Faith Black Ross (Crooked Lane Books)

Senior Editor Faith Black Ross has been with Crooked Lane Books for the past year and a half after more than a decade in publishing. Previously she handled mysteries and historical fiction for the Berkley Publishing Group (Penguin Random House). She’s looking for traditional mysteries and cozies of all shapes and sizes, historical and international mysteries, amateur and female sleuths, as well as thrillers, particularly those of a psychological, suspenseful, and/or historical variety. She is particularly interested in mystery projects with strong voices, precocious protagonists, and a touch of humor–dark humor included.

 

Rachel Diebel

Rachel Diebel (St. Martin’s Press)

Rachel Diebel (St. Martin’s Press) is an assistant editor at St. Martin’s Press, where she works on bestselling authors like Kristin Hannah and the Instagram poet Atticus, and acquires young adult and women’s fiction. She holds a Masters in Publishing from Pace University. Rachel is originally from the Pacific Northwest and now lives in Brooklyn.

I am interested in acquiring young adult novels across most genres, but I have a particular love for contemporary stories with a compelling hook and an emphasis on queer and own voices narratives, friendships, and found families. I also love historical fiction and fantasy (particularly contemporary fantasy/magical realism) that stands out from the crowd. I’m drawn to unique voices, character-driven narratives, and badass women in any genre.

In adult fiction, I am interested in upmarket women’s fiction, contemporary or historical, featuring compelling female leads and, again, diverse voices. I am also on the lookout for smart, funny trade paperback original romantic comedies in the vein of THE HATING GAME by Sally Thorne or ONE DAY IN DECEMBER by Josie Silver. Writing/voice and character are always key for me!

Thomas Hoeler

Tom Hoeler (Del Rey)

Tom is an associate 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 the genre. Currently, he focuses on a variety of pop culture brands on licensed book programs from Star Wars, Blizzard Entertainment, Stranger Things, Wizards of the Coast, and more. He’s an avid reader of science fiction, space opera, and all facets of fantasy publishing.

LOOKING FOR: Vibrant new voices to the SF/F.

Agents


 

Victoria Doherty Munro (Writers House)

Victoria Doherty Munro started at Writers House as an intern in 2010 and began building her own list in 2015 representing middle grade, young adult, and adult authors. She especially loves adult fiction that features younger protagonists, as well as magical realism, historical fiction, and mysteries/thrillers that tend towards the literary and psychological. For YA, she’s a huge fan of unreliable narrators and plot twists that take her so completely by surprise that she gasps out loud, or any book that gets at the uniquely tumultuous, confusing, and exciting experience of being a teenager, really – anything that makes her heart hurt at least once before the final page. And when it comes to middle grade, she gravitates to anything with heart at the center. To break it down a little further: quirky adventures, laugh-out-loud hilarity, and contemporary or historical stories that fully engage the reader in a world that is simultaneously familiar and new to them. She’s also a sucker for retold fairytales, or any stories that captures the kind of classic fantasy feeling of the books she adored at that age.

Becky LeJeune (Bond Literary)

Becky LeJeune is an associate agent at Sandra Bond’s Denver-based Bond Literary Agency. Prior to joining the Bond, 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.

LOOKING FOR: Cookbooks and YA/adult in: 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. 

Lesley Sabga (The Seymour Agency)

Since graduating from The University of Kentucky (Go Cats!) and obtaining her Editorial Certification from The University of Chicago, Lesley has worked as an editorial intern and freelancer for multiple publishing houses. She’s also been working for The Seymour Agency since 2014, becoming an Associate Agent in 2017.

LOOKING FOR:  MG, YA, and Adult fantasy/science fiction, dark suspense/thriller with strong, female protagonists, romance, mystery and narrative non-fiction. Lesley loves intricate and vivid world building and character driven plots.

Suzie Townsend (New Leaf Literary)

Prior to joining New Leaf, Suzie graduated film school, earned her Masters of Education, and taught high school English. She started as an intern at FinePrint Literary Management and worked as an assistant before becoming a literary agent. She’s been part of the team at New Leaf Literary & Media since its inception in 2012.

LOOKING FOR: All brands of children’s and adult fiction, women’s fiction, all subgenres of romance, fantasy, and crime fiction. On the children’s side, YA and MG. Suzie loves strong characters and voice-driven stories that break out of the typical tropes of their genres, and she’s always looking for unique new voices in stories.

Authors and Specialists


 

Debbie Maxwell Allen

Debbie Maxwell Allen

Debbie Maxwell Allen drank the Scrivener kool-aid, and never looked back. When not revolutionizing other writers’ lives with the wonders of Scrivener, she works as a project manager for Good Catch Publishing and writes young adult historical fantasy in the Rocky Mountains. The rest of the time, she keeps tabs on her husband, five children, two cats, and one new grandchild. She blogs about free resources for writers at http://www.writingwhilethericeboils.blogspot.com/ .

Carol Berg

Carol Berg

Carol Berg’s fifteen epic fantasy novels have won the Prism Award, the Geffen Award, multiple Colorado Book Awards, and the Mythopoeic Fantasy Award for Adult Literature. Carol is a regular panelist/presenter at writers conferences and science fiction conventions. All of this
amazing to one who majored in math at Rice University and computer science at the University of Colorado to avoid writing papers. A former software engineer, Carol calls writing “the hobby that ate my life.”  Under her pseudonym of Cate Glass, Carol has a new book, An Illusion of Thieves, the first novel of the Chimera, coming from Tor/Forge in May 2019.

Fleur Bradley

Fleur Bradley

Fleur (F.T.) Bradley is the author of the Double Vision trilogy (HarperCollins Children’s), a fun 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 and editing career along with various novel projects. She lives in Colorado Springs with her husband and two daughters, and entirely too many cats.

Eric Carlson

Eric Carlson

Eric Carlson has an MA in Phonology from University College London. He is a linguist, copy-editor, historian, philosopher, typographer, book designer, and sometimes software developer. He brings this wide combination of skills to matters of writing, and he tries to share his knowledge and insights with others in the hope that they will see their own writing in profoundly new ways. He currently lives in Santa Fe, where water boils at less than 200°F (93°C), with his wife and three cats.

Jami Carpenter

Jami Carpenter

Jami Carpenter has worked with traditional and boutique publishers, self-publishing writers, advertising agencies, and non-profit organizations. Jami is the commissioned co-author of two books, editor of over 100 books, and executive producer/host of a PBS television show featuring interviews with local, national, and international authors.

Trai Cartwright

Trai Cartwright

TRAI CARTWRIGHT, MFA, is a 25-year entertainment industry veteran and writing and producing specialist. She is a screenwriter, producer, and teaches at UC Center, University of Denver’s MA creative writing program, and is the new co-screenwriting professor at Western State
University’s MFA program.

Trai spent fifteen years in Los Angeles working as a Studio Development Executive who consulted on thousands of screenplays for HBO, 20th Century Fox, Paramount, Universal, and New Line. 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 and the Big Break Contest) for Main Man Films, and Hidden Tigers, a docu-series for Red Unicorn Films.
www.craftwrite.com

Margo Catts

Margo Catts

Margo Catts is a freelance writer, editor, blogger, and passionate traveler currently based in Houston because she can’t be everywhere else at once. Her 2017 debut novel, AMONG THE LESSER GODS, is soon to be released in paperback, and she’s at work on the next, CITY OF WALLS. She is recently repatriated after living in Saudi Arabia, and is a contributing author to the anthology ONCE UPON AN EXPAT. She’ll do a crossword now and then, but finds humanity to be the most interesting puzzle in the world.

Deb Courtney

Deb Courtney

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 yeas 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

Rachel Craft

Rachel Craft writes middle grade, young adult, and speculative fiction. Her work has appeared in publications such as Cricket, Ask, and Young Explorer’s Adventure Guide, as well as the award-winning anthology Found. She is the blog editor and upcoming anthology co-editor for Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers. She lives and writes in Louisville, Colorado.

Jason Dias

Jason Dias

Jason Dias is a doctor of clinical psychology with fifteen years of experience working with developmentally disabled adults, four with people in severe states at the psychiatric hospital, and nine doing international psychology. He is co-founder of the Zhi Mian Institute for International Existential Psychology, an organization helping Chinese psychotherapists to acquire counseling skills and develop professional infrastructure. Additionally, Jason writes. His credits include web journals and articles for The New Existentialists and A New Domain, two book chapters about existential psychology, a book of poetry and several novels and anthologies. He worries that academic writers spend too much time writing for journals only read by people who already agree with them and tries to get big ideas out in other formats. Jason lives in Colorado Springs with his wife and son and keeps mostly to himself.

Kameron Claire

Kameron loves building worlds where heroes and heroines push, pull, and fight their way to the love and happiness they deserve. As a third-generation veteran, she believes anywhere can be home, but has spent most of her life in Colorado and Arizona, which are just as much a part of her as her wanderlust spirit. She’s traveled to many corners of the world, but has so many places she still needs to see. When not writing, she’s tackling remodeling projects around her home, seeking out new travel adventures with her gypsy friends, or snuggling with her four-legged son.

Jason Henry Evans

Jason Evans

Jason always wanted to be a writer, he just didn’t know it. He grew up in and went to college in Southern California. After college he taught locally in Los Angeles until he got married and moved to Denver in 2004. For nine years Jason was a public school teacher. He had his first story published in 2014. Since then he has been a regular panelist at Denver ComicCon and other local conventions. He has had several short stories published, blogs regularly for Pikes Peak Writers & Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers, ran an online magazine and edited an anthology. He
earned an MA in History in 2012. Jason is married to the Fetching Mrs. Evans, his spouse, best friend and tax preparer. They live together in Denver with their two dogs and one cantankerous cat.

Todd Fahnestock

Todd Fahnestock

TODD FAHNESTOCK is a writer of fantasy for all ages and winner of the New York Public Library’s Books for the Teenage Award. His bestselling The Wishing World series began as bedtime stories for his children, and his epic fantasy series include: Threadweavers, The Heartstone Trilogy and The Whisper Prince Trilogy. Charlie Fiction is his first urban fantasy novel. Stories are his passion, but Todd’s greatest accomplishment is his quirky, fun-loving family. When he’s not writing, he goes on morning runs with his daughter, wrestles with his son, practices Taekwondo, and drives his wife crazy with the emotional rollercoaster that comes with being a writer.

Christine Goff

Christine Goff

Chris Goff is the award-winning author of six mystery novels and two international thrillers. Her most recent release, Red Sky was a 2018 Colorado Book Award Finalist. Goff’s series debut, Dark Waters, was dubbed “a sure bet for fans of international thrillers” by Booklist, and was a 2016 Colorado Book Award Finalist, Colorado Authors’ League Award Finalist, and an Anthony Award Finalist for Best Crime Fiction audiobooks.

Goff began her career as a columnist and writing non-fiction for local, regional and national publication.  Later she edited rock and ice-climbing guides for Chockstone Press and worked in graphic production for “Living the Good News,” a division of The Morehouse Publishing Group. She has taught writing at the Colorado Free University, the University of Colorado, and at conferences and workshops nationally and internationally. She currently serves on the executive committee of the International Association of Crime Writers and as Education Liaison for Sisters in Crime.

Marc Graham

Marc Graham

Marc Graham is an author, actor, and student of shamanic practices. His debut historical novel, Of Ashes and Dust was released in March 2017. His second novel, Song of Songs, is scheduled for release by Blank Slate Press in May 2019, with a third scheduled for late 2019.

Dan Grant

Dan Grant

Dan Grant loves the world of stories, especially suspense and thrillers that weave science, medicine, or technology into the fabric of the drama. He has degrees in electrical engineering and creative writing. As a professional engineer, his career has provided unique behind-the-scenes opportunities. Those experiences provide threads to conspiracies and form a broader storytelling tapestry. The San Francisco Book Review called Dan’s The Singularity Witness “a fast-paced thriller with a scientific edge.” His next thriller, Thirteen Across, is slated for release in May 2019.

Shannon Lawrence

Shannon Lawrence

A fan of all things fantastical and frightening, Shannon Lawrence writes primarily horror and fantasy. Her stories can be found in several anthologies and magazines, including Space and Time Magazine and The Literary Hatchet, and her short story collection Blue Sludge Blues & Other Abominations is now available. 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. Find her at  www.thewarriormuse.com .

Polly Letofsky

Polly Letofsky

After frustrating experiences with dodgy publishers, Polly launched herself into learning every aspect of the publishing industry. Her goal was to guide authors through the fast changing world of self-publishing. It is a brilliant era in which to be an author, in fact, it’s the most exciting time in history to be in this arena. An era in which there are great alternatives that offer a cost-effective, swift, flexible publishing options where the author can uphold creative control, they can maintain all distribution rights, and all the profits end up in their hands. Polly has established herself as an expert in the field of self-publishing and book promotion through the publication of her own award winning book, 3mph: The Adventures of One Woman’s Walk Around the World. Polly is also an active participant and member of several leading publishing and writing associations nationwide, including The Independent Book Publishers Association.

Stant Litore

Stant Litore

Stant Litore writes about zombies, aliens, and tyrannosaurs. He does not currently own a starship or a time machine but would rather like to. He lives in Aurora, Colorado with his wife and three children and hides from visitors in the basement library beneath a heap of toy dinosaurs, tattered novels, comic books, incomprehensibly scribbled drafts, and antique tomes. He is working on his next novel, or several. You can read some of his current fiction by looking up Ansible, The Running of the Tyrannosaurs, The Zombie Bible, or Dante’s Heart. However, doing so may have unpredictable effects, and Stant offers no assurances that you will emerge from any of these stories unscathed. Best leave all non-essentials behind, take with you only what you need to survive, and venture into the books cautiously and ready to call for backup. Enjoy, and good luck.

Jonathan Maberry

Jonathan Maberry

JONATHAN MABERRY is a New York Times best-selling and five-time Bram Stoker Award-winning author, anthology editor, comic book writer, magazine feature writer, playwright, content creator, and writing teacher/lecturer. He was named one of the Today’s Top Ten Horror Writers. His books have been sold to more than two-dozen countries.

Chris Mandeville

Chris Mandeville

CHRIS MANDEVILLE writes science fiction/fantasy and nonfiction for writers. She served as president of the nonprofit Pikes Peak Writers for five years, and is now the Conference Director for Superstars Writing Seminars. Her published works include 52 Ways to Get Unstuck: Exercises to Break Through Writer’s Block and Seeds: a post-apocalyptic adventure. Her young adult debut, Quake, is the first in the travel series In Real Time, followed by Shake and Break.

chrismandeville.com

Tiffany Yates Martin

Tiffany Yates Martin

Tiffany Yates Martin is privileged to help authors tell their stories as effectively, compellingly, and truthfully as possible. In more than 25 years in the publishing industry she’s worked both with major publishing houses and directly with authors (through her company FoxPrint Editorial), on titles by New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestsellers. She presents editing and writing workshops for writers’ groups, organizations, and conferences and writes for numerous writers’ sites and publications.

Bonnie McCune

Bonnie McCune

Bonnie McCune has been writing since age ten, when she submitted a poem about rain rushing down the gutter to the Saturday Evening Post (it was rejected). Her interest in the written word facilitated her career in nonprofits where she concentrated on public and community relations and marketing. She’s worked for libraries, directed a small arts organization, and managed Denver’s beautification program.

Her true passion is fiction, and her stories have won several awards. Among her credits: Penny, 2017; honorable mention, Best Short Stories Sat Eve Post Fiction Contest 2013; finalist Best New Writing 2013 anthology; Infectiveink, 2013; 2nd prize, 2012 Tom Howard Short Story Contest; 1 st  prize 2011 Art Affairs contest; second prize Women Who Write 2011; 7th  2009 Writer’s Digest short-shorts first prize On the Premises 2009.

With five women’s fiction books under her belt, she’s now seeking a new publisher as she re-directs her writing toward spec fiction. See her writing and blog at  www.BonnieMcCune.com .

Kendra Merritt

Kendra Merritt

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 writes retellings of fairytales with main characters who have disabilities. 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.

Saundra Mitchell

Saundra Mitchell

Saundra Mitchell is the author of fifteen books for tweens and teens.
Her work includes SHADOWED SUMMER, THE VESPERTINE
series, the non-fiction THEY DID WHAT!? series, and two anthologies for teens, DEFY THE DARK and ALL OUT.
SHADOWED SUMMER was the 2010 winner of The Society of Midland Authors Book Award for Children’s Fiction and a 2010 Edgar® AwardNominee. It was chosen as a Junior Library Guild selection and an ALAN Pick in 2009.

Her short story “Ready to Wear” was nominated for a 2007 Pushcart Prize after appearing in Vestal ReviewIssue 27. Her short fiction and
non-fiction has appeared in anthologies including A TYRANNY OF PETTICOATS, FORETOLD, GRIM, TRUTH & DARE and DEAR
BULLY.
For twenty years, she was the head screenwriter and an executive producer with Dreaming Tree Films on their various teen filmmaking programs, including the largest teen filmmaking program in the United States, Fresh Films. They produced more than four hundred films from her screenplays, and she earned Academy Award eligibility ten times during her tenure.
Ms. Mitchell has been a phone psychic, a car salesperson, a denture-deliverer and a layout waxer. She’s dodged trains, endured basic training, and hitchhiked from Montana to California. In her free time, she enjoys fandom, studying history, crochet, and spending time with her wife and her daughters. Her pronouns are Any/Any.

Sandra Murphy

Sandra Murphy

Sandra’s first stage experience was in her family room at the age of two, clowning around with a bucket on her head . . . that ended in stitches. She found the theatre stage to be less dangerous and enjoyed expressing her creativity there throughout high school and college. Professionally, Sandra’s career began in production. She is well versed in everything from managing companies of actors, overseeing budgets, organizing logistics, to being responsible for scores of people traversing the globe. Life has its way of coming full circle. Sandra has found her true home as the Voice Mama™, expressing her creativity through voice over and audiobook narration. She knows that there is so much more to a story than the words on the page and is adept at using her theatrical instincts to bring stories to life. Whether it’s a non-fiction title, challenging business
women to lead with power and confidence, or a murder mystery, leading the sleuth on the path to discover the killer, Sandra’s compelling narration fully envelopes the listener in the story. On her time off she loves to spend time with her husband and daughters which often includes cooking amazing food, laughing hysterically, and dancing in the kitchen. On those truly blessed occasions when all production deadlines are met and her family well fed, you will find her just relaxing in the backyard on her hammock.

James Persichetti

James Persichetti

James Persichetti is a freelance developmental editor for a wide variety of genres and the founder of Lost Hat Editorial Services. Prior to editing, James worked for over three years with Nelson Literary Agency, reading submissions and selling foreign rights. In his free time, he writes fiction, practices various languages, and is on a quest to find the perfect flour-to-egg ratio for fresh pasta.

Veronica Roland

Veronica Roland

Veronica R. Calisto spends her days massaging data, weekends massaging people, and the spaces between being beaten into submission by the superheroes and giant spiders in her head. She is the author of several books including Starfish & Coffee, the first in the SparkleTits Chronicles.

Jennifer Rose

Jennifer Rose

J. Rose writes with the Rocky Mountains outside her window and her ferrets at her feet. In her other life, she’s a trained opera singer. She holds a black belt in Tae Kwon Do, and studies other martial art styles for research, including Jujitsu. When she’s not having fun on the twins’ story, she can be found hiking, biking, or spending time with friends. Since finishing her first ‘novel’ at the age of 15, she continues to have a passion for telling stories that make a difference.

Rebecca Rowley

Rebecca Rowley

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. Past publications include short works of humorous fiction and random acts of poetry. When not entertaining the masses or terrorizing the villagers, she copyedits for a local publisher and utilizes her MBA in Entertainment Management to develop programs designed to support fellow authors and humorists in building their careers.

Cindy Skaggs

Cindy Skaggs

Cindy Skaggs grew up on stories of mob bosses, horse thieves, cold-blooded killers, and the last honest man. Those mostly true stories gave her a lifelong love of storytelling that enables her writing addiction. She is the author of seven published romantic suspense novels, including The Untouchables trilogy and a novella for Entangled Publishing: Untouchable, An Untouchable Christmas, Unforgettable, and Unstoppable, plus the Team Fear series: Live By the Team, Fight By The Team, and Survive By The Team. Her essays have appeared in Progenitor Art & Literary Review, Soundings, Wanderlust Journal, and the Fredericksburg Literary Art Review. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing, three jobs, two kids, and more pets than she can possibly handle. She also plays the flute, makes crazy-good sculptures out of tortilla dough, and can wrangle the neurotic dog without getting mauled. Find her as Cindy Skaggs, Writer on Facebook, @CLSkaggs on Twitter, or www.CSkaggs.com to sign up for her newsletter.

David Slayton

David R. Slayton

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 writes the books he always wanted to read.

His debut YA fantasy, GHOST DRAGON, will be published in January 2020 by Harmony Ink Press. He is represented by Lesley Sabga of the Seymour Agency.

Brenda Speer

Brenda Speer

Brenda Speer has been practicing law since the last millennium (1989) and has honed her primary area of emphasis, intellectual property law (patent, trademark, copyright and trade secret), through both private law firm practice and in-house legal department service. She is in private law practice in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and provides legal counsel to artists, entertainers, innovators, companies and individuals in the creative, technological, business and real estate arts. She is an avid champion in educating and enabling her clients to protect and nurture their valuable brainchildren and other important personal, business and real estate assets.

Sarah Storme

Sarah Storme

Sarah H. Baker, author of more than 20 published novels, writes fiction as S. H. Baker, Sarah Storme, and Lydia Parks. Her first novel was published by AOL Time Warner in 2001. She teaches classes for the University of New Mexico’s Continuing Education program, and is president of SouthWest Writers. She enjoys helping other writers.

Mary Young

Mary Young

Award-winning writer and naturalist Mary Taylor Young has been writing about the landscape and heritage of Colorado and the American West for 30 years as a full-time freelance writer. Her 17 books include Rocky Mountain National Park: The First 100 Years and Land of Grass and Sky: A Naturalist’s Prairie Journey. She has published hundreds of magazine, newspaper and web articles and her Words On Birds column appeared in the Rocky Mountain News for 16 years. Mary was a National Park Service Artist-in-Residence at Rocky Mountain National Park in 2012. She has worked with thousands of school children, K through 9th, as a creative writing artist in residence. In 2016, she was the spring commencement speaker for Colorado State University, College of Natural Sciences, her alma mater. Mary lives in Castle Rock with her family. The Friends of the Pikes Peak Library District named Mary the 2018 Frank Waters Award honoree for exemplary literary achievement and a canon of writing that communicates a deep understanding, celebration, and love of the West.