Conference Faculty revealed
Judy Matheny, Vice President
When the 2018 Wyoming Writers Conference convenes June 1-3 at the Headwaters Arts and Conference Center in Dubois, attendees will be treated to three days of instruction, inspiration and camaraderie in a town voted by Expedia as the best place to escape in Wyoming. This will be the first time since conference began in Sheridan in 1974 that Wyoming Writers has visited Dubois. This intimate and authentic western town will be the perfect venue for presentations by:
Keynote Speaker and Instructor William Kent Krueger Kent writes the New York Times bestselling Cork O’Connor mystery series, which is set in the great north woods of Minnesota. Desolation Mountain, the 17th novel in his series, will be released this August. His 2013 novel Ordinary Grace was honored with almost every award possible in the mystery genre, including the Mystery Writers of America’s (MWA) Edgar Award, the MWA Best Novel Anthony Award, the Deadly Pleasures Mystery Magazine Barry Award, and the Mystery Readers International Macavity Award. During his instructional sessions, Kent will provide insight on finding the soul of the story, creating suspense and elevating setting and place.
Middle Grade and Young Adult Fiction writer Nanci Turner Steveson HarperCollins author, and nominee for the 2017/2018 Wyoming Indian Paintbrush Award, Nanci is well-known within Wyoming’s schools, as well as nationally for Swing Sideways (2016), andGeorgia Rules (2017). She has two more coming out in 2018-2019, and will help attendees Decode KidLit – the not so subtle lines between Picture Books, Chapter Books, Middle Grade and Young Adult; develop a pitch-perfect Middle Grade or Young Adult voice; and understand why Middle Grade and Young Adult books are changing the world.
Poet Laureate, Musician and Inspirational Writing Instructor David Romtvedt Wyoming’s Poet Laureate from 2003 through 2010 is a multi-talented musician, writer, and recently retired professor in the MFA program at the University of Wyoming. David’s recent books include the poetry collection Dilemmas of the Angels (2017) and the novel Zelestina Urza in Outer Space (2015). David’s sessions will discuss Sound and Sense in word use and rhythm; explore “Mountains, the Trees and Just Passing Through” nature; and Meter and Music in poetry and lyrics.
Self-Publishing Expert and World Traveler Polly Letofsky Polly’s knowledge grew from necessity when her first book, 3 MPH: The Adventures of One Woman’s Walk Around the World, failed to find a traditional publishing home. Now she’s an expert on content, editing, cover art and marketing. Bring your questions and a notebook to Self-Publishing 101 – How to finally get that manuscript published this year; Top 20 Ways to Market Your Book – a consolidation of lessons from her book BUZZ – Your Super Sticky Book Marketing Plan; and How to Market Your Book on Amazon – understanding the technology, tactics and tricks to be a success on that massive forum.
Becky LeJeune, associate agent with Denver’s Bond Literary Agency will be on hand to take pitches on Adult, Young Adult (YA) and Middle Grade (MG) fiction in the horror, mystery / suspense / fantasy, general fiction, historical fiction, sci fi and fantasy genres. She is actively building her client list and excited to participate in WW, Inc. for the first time.
Jackson-based Editor and Publisher Aaron Linsdau, Sastrugi Press, will return this year, hoping for as much success in acquiring new Wyoming authors as last year. His suggestions and guidelines for pitching new material have been added to the wyowriters.org website. Aaron is an internationally recognized explorer, writer, and speaker.
Carrie Howland, Empire Literary Agency, New York, NY is excited to participate in her first Wyoming Writers adventure. Attracted by the intimate Dubois locale, Carrie is actively acquiring new authors and content, and will be taking pitches for adult literary and upmarket fiction, narrative non-fiction, YA and MG. Carrie’s background is poetry, so beautiful language is one of the first things she looks for in a project.
With two outstanding adventurers in the line-up, the WW, Inc. Conference will also host a special session on “Adventure and Adventure Writing,” to explore how extraordinary passions can give birth to a writing career. Polly Letofsky and Aaron Linsdau have both completed world adventures, and thrived to write about them. Join their session to ignite and give form to your personal explorations.
Conference registration is slated to open April 15. The Writing Contest has been announced, Award nominations are open, and the Scholarship application will soon be online at wyowriters.org