Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Author Fest 2012 - A Partnership

This Friday is the seventh annual Author Fest of the Rockies, held in Manitou Springs.  This is the first year Author Fest has been a standalone production, no longer associated with the Manitou Springs Public Library District.

Pikes Peak Writers is proud to be a partner in this year's Author Fest.  From behind the scenes help to speakers and special events, it's been a delight to be a part of this wonderful annual event.  Intended for both readers and writers, this is a unique event that takes a full conference and makes it friendly to anyone interested in books, not just those who write them (or hope to).

Author Fest will be held Friday, September 28 and Saturday, September 29, from 9am to 4pm both days.  The cost is $75, covering both days' programming, as well as breakfast and lunch.  It's located at the Business of Art Center, 515 Manitou Avenue.  See the website for more location information, including free parking locations.

The keynote speakers are Stephen Coonts, Stephen Graham Jones, Barbara Wright, Barbara Samuel O'Neal and Jessy Randall.  A phenomenal lineup!

As part of our partnership with Author Fest, Pikes Peak Writers is presenting three classes, free to the public.  You do not have to be attending the rest of the conference to attend these presentations.  These classes are as follows:

Friday 11:00 to 11:45am 
What Can a Writer's Conference Do for You? presented by: Bonnie Hagan 
Long-time member of the Pikes Peak Writers Board of Directors, Bonnie Hagan, will share tips, tricks and tidbits for getting the most out of a writer's conference. BONUS MATERIAL: as Director of the 2013 Pikes Peak Writers Conference, Bonnie has agreed to share a "sneak peek" and reveal exciting information about her plans for the next PPWC.

Friday 2:30 to 4:15pm
Get Ready for NaNo! presented by: Chris Mandeville
National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) is coming up fast. Are you ready to write 50,000 words in thirty days this November? This intensive workshop will help set you up for a successful NaNo experience whether you're a first-time participant or seasoned veteran. Topics include goal-setting, scheduling, plotting/planning techniques, character exercises, and a host of tips and tricks to keep you from getting stuck during your thirty-day writing spree. Bring a pen and paper to take notes and do writing exercises. 

Saturday 11:00 to 11:45am
Critique Groups: Discussion and Demo presented by: Deb Courtney and Mary Karen Meredith
Should you be in a critique group? What are the options? What are the dangers? Learn how to choose a group or create one, as well as the types of rules and safeties that should be in place to ensure the group stays positive and professional. After the discussion, Deb and Mary Karen will demonstrate appropriate, constructive critiquing in an “open critique” forum. Attendees are encouraged to bring the first page of their work-in-progress for the opportunity to receive feedback.

Finally, there is a free book signing on Saturday from 2:30 to 4pm.  You do not have to be a conference attendee to attend this signing, and it's free.  You can purchase books directly from the conference to get signed, if you like.

For more information, you can visit the official Author Fest of the Rockies website at  

Will you be attending the Author Fest?

About the Writer:  Shannon Lawrence is a mom of two, a freelance writer and aspiring novelist.  She lives in Colorado Springs and is inspired by the beauty of Pikes Peak and the Rockies.  After years of letting her writing fall by the wayside, she has recently thrown herself back into it.  Her main focus is fantasy and horror and she has just finished a Young Adult Fantasy novel.  She has a flash fiction piece featured in the anthology Sunday Snaps: The Stories, due out in late October 2012.  She has also discovered a love of photography and enjoys photographing the breathtaking Colorado scenery and wildlife, as well as her children.  She blogs about reading, writing and photography at

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