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Peter Heller - Colorado Book Festival Keynote Speaker
11:00 - Training Room, 7th Floor


Peter Heller is a Colorado treasure. His books interweave love and grief, mystery and violence. In this interactive keynote program, broadcast journalist Carol McKinley will interview Peter, exploring how he finds ideas, how much of his fiction stems from true events, and what jumpstarts his twists and turns. Don’t miss this real-time peek into the creative process of a best-selling author! 

Peter Heller is the best-selling author of The PainterThe Dog Stars, and Celine. He holds an MFA from the Iowa Writers' Workshop in both fiction and poetry. An award-winning adventure writer and a longtime contributor to NPR, Heller is a contributing editor at Outside magazine, Men's Journal, and National Geographic Adventure, and a regular contributor to Bloomberg Businessweek. He is also the author of several nonfiction books, including Kook, The Whale Warriors, and Hell or High Water​: Surviving Tibet's Tsangpo River. 

Carol McKinley has been covering news from the Rocky Mountains for over 30  years. During that time, she's been privileged to be an observer. She's been on the sidelines covering everything from wars, to collegiate football championships, historic trials, hurricanes, shootings, parades and dancing mules.  She currently works for CBS News as a field producer, teaches journalism  at Metro State University and writes for The Daily Beast. She lives in Littleton where she takes care of her husband, her dogs and her mom.

Carol McKinley - Colorado Book Festival Keynote Interviewer
Eliza Cross - Colorado Book Festival Secrets of Cookbook Chefs Moderator
Barbara Stafford - Colorado Book Festival Secrets of Cookbook Chefs Panelist
Adrian Miller - Colorado Book Festival Secrets of Cookbook Chefs Panelist
JL Fields - Colorado Book Festival Secrets of Cookbook Chefs Panelist
2:00 - Gates Conference Room, 5th Floor
Secrets of Cookbook Chefs: How to Live Well, Love Right, Save Money, Master Flavorings and Cook Better, Too

Do you read cookbooks the way other people read novels? Are you a foodie? Or are you just somebody who eats food?! Join this panel of top Colorado food writers to celebrate the joy of food and the many ways it enriches our lives beyond just physical sustenance!


Eliza Cross is the author of more than a dozen books about food, including the bestselling cookbook 101 Things To Do With Bacon. She blogs about saving money, good food and organic gardening at, and is the founder of the bacon enthusiasts' society BENSA.


Barbara Stafford is a wife, mother and cooking instructor currently living in beautiful Colorado. Eclectic Entertaining - Small Plates and Dainty Desserts is her second award-winning cookbook, complementing her first award-winning book, Eclectic Entertaining - 15 Complete Dinner Party Menus for Busy People Who Like to Cook. Barbara’s goal is to make entertaining fun, stress-free and enjoyable. She stuffs her cookbooks with helpful hints to help remove any fear on the part of a novice cook. Let’s bring back the art of easy and elegant entertaining in our homes!

Adrian Miller is a food writer, attorney and certified barbecue judge who lives in Denver, CO. Miller has been a board member of the Southern Foodways Alliance. Miller’s first book, Soul Food: The Surprising Story of an American Cuisine, One Plate at a Time won the James Beard Foundation Award for Scholarship and Reference in 2014. His second book, The President’s Kitchen Cabinet: The Story of the African Americans Who Have Fed Our First Families, From the Washingtons to the Obamas was published on President's Day, 2017.


JL Fields is the founder and culinary director of the Colorado Springs Vegan Cooking Academy. She is a Master Vegan Lifestyle Coach & Educator, Food for Life instructor, and chef instructor in the culinary program at the University of New Mexico-Taos. 

Jodi Torpey - Colorado Book Festival Cultivting Community Panelist
1:00 - Training Room 2, 7th Floor
Cultivating Community, One Seed At A Time: How Growing Food Strengthens Community, Fosters Learning And
Helps Connect Us To The Earth

Join a gardening writer and community gardening advocate as they explore how growing food strengthens community, fosters learning and helps connect us to the earth. Discover backyard, urban, community and school gardens, as well as growing-and-giving programs like Plant a Row for the Hungry and Produce for Pantries. 

Jodi Torpey is an award-winning vegetable gardener, author of Blue Ribbon Vegetable Gardening and The Colorado Gardener’s Companion, and the founder and editor-in-chief of Her writing appears in digital and print media, and she’s a popular speaker at gardening conferences and special events around the country.


Krista Roberts is a professionally trained cook, mother of 8- and 6-year old sons, and a non-profit director who is passionate about celebrating farmers, food producers, food traditions, and the future of food. As the Director of Slow Food Denver, a local non-profit chapter of the international Slow Food movement, she oversees programs and events that build community through food. Through school garden programs and community gatherings, she is reminded often how growing food can strengthen community, inspire curiosity and learning, and allow us to slow down.

Krista Roberts - Colorado Book Festival Cultivting Community Panelist
Dian Curtis Regan - Colorado Book Fesival Writing & Readng Graphically Moderator
Todd Mitchell - Colorado Book Fesival Writing & Readng Graphically Panelist
Stan Yan - Colorado Book Fesival Writing & Readng Graphically Panelist
12:00 - Training Room 1, 7th floor
Reading & Writing Graphically: Words, Pictures and the 21st Century Reader 

 Graphic novels appeal to all ages and effectively interweave words, dynamic illustration and story. More than just comic books, graphic novels and books have particular appeal in the 21st century, when visual information increasingly dominates our world. This panel of graphic novelists creates for all ages, from early readers to adults.

Dian Curtis Regan, moderator, is the author of 60 books for young readers. Space Boy and the Space Pirate was a finalist for the Colorado Book award and winner of a Crystal Kite Award, presented by the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.  Other popular titles include Princess Nevermore, Monster of the Month Club, and Ghost Twins


Todd Mitchell writes books for teens, people who were teens, and people who will be teens. His middle grade novels include The Last Panther (which is a "Best New Book for Kids" pick), and The Traitor King. For slightly older audiences, he's written The Secret to Lying (a Colorado Book Award Winner), and Backwards (a Colorado Authors League Award Winner). He also created the graphic series Broken Saviors (available now on ComiXology), and co-wrote the graphic novel A Flight of Angels (a YALSA "Top 10 Great Graphic Novels for Teens" pick). Currently, Todd serves as Director of the Beginning Creative Writing Teaching Program at Colorado State University. He lives in Fort Collins with his wife, dog, and two wise daughters.


Many of you might know Stan Yan as the guy who draws zombie caricatures of people at the Denver Comic con, but Stan is also a writer/illustrator, cartoonist and instructor. His credits include work for The Westword, Vincent Price Presents, Show Devils, and most recently his bedtime storybook inspired by his son’s fear of his zombie artwork, There’s a Zombie in the Basement. He’s a former board member of the Colorado Alliance of Illustrators, and current member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.

Mark Stevens - Colorado Book Festival Writing for Chicks/Dudes Moderator
Erik Storey - Colorado Book Festival Writing for Chicks/Dudes Panelist
Linda Hull - Colorado Book Festival Writing for Chicks/Dudes Panelist
Carrie Vaughn - Colorado Book Festival Writing for Chicks/Dudes Panelist
1:00 - Training room 1, 7th Floor
Writing for Chicks, Writing for Dudes — What’s the Difference and Why Should Readers Care?


From thrillers to romance, cozy mysteries to espionage, certain kinds of fiction tend to appeal more to either female or male readers. Four top Colorado novelists talk about why that matters, how it’s done and what’s in it for readers.

Mark Stevens, moderator, writes the Allison Coil Mystery Series—Antler Dust, Buried by the Roan, Trapline, and Lake of Fire. Trapline won the 2015 Colorado Book Award for best mystery and the 2015 Colorado Authors League award for best genre fiction.. Stevens was the 2016 Writer of The Year for Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers. He hosts a regular podcast for RMFW and he currently president of Rocky Mountain Mystery Writers of America.


Erik Storey is the author of Nothing Short of Dying and A Promise to Kill, two in a series featuring the rugged adventurer Clyde Barr. Lee Child has said about his writing, “Very, very good… Reacher is keeping an eye on this guy,” Jeffery Deaver dubbed him, “a born storyteller,” and Washington Times called him, “a true master of the thriller novel.” Erik is a former ranch hand, wilderness guide, dogsled musher, and hunter.  He spent his childhood summers on his great-grandfather’s homestead or in a remote cabin in Colorado’s Flat Tops wilderness. He and his family live in Grand Junction, Colorado.

Linda Joffe Hull is a longtime resident of Denver where she lives with her husband, daughter, and the pets her sons left behind when they went off to college. Linda is the author of The Big Bang, as well as three titles in the Mrs. Frugalicious Mystery series, and two books in the Sunny St. Clair series. The Swing of Things, her upcoming release as part of the writing team Linda Keir, will be released by Lake Union Publishing in August. A former board member of Mystery Writers of America, and longtime member and former president of Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers, Linda was named the 2013 RMFW Writer of the Year. 

Carrie Vaughn is best known for her New York Times bestselling series of novels about a werewolf named Kitty, who hosts a talk radio show for the supernaturally disadvantaged.  She's written a half dozen other novels, as well as upwards of 80 short stories.  An Air Force brat, she survived her nomadic childhood and managed to put down roots in Boulder, Colorado. 

Chris Goff - Colorado Book Festival Why Mysteries are Popular Moderator
Carter - Colorado Book Festival Why Mysteries are Popular Panelist
Manuel Ramos - Colorado Book Festival Why Mysteries are Popular Panelist
2:00 - Rick Ashton Room, 7th Floor
Why Mysteries are Popular During Fraught Times

We’re living in interesting times…and mysteries are more popular than ever. Join the discussion with best-selling Colorado mystery writers as they discuss the enduring appeal of  who-dunnits.

Chris Goff, Moderator, is the award-winning author of six mystery novels and two international thrillers. The bestselling Birdwatcher's Mystery series was nominated for two WILLA Literary Awards and a Colorado Author's League Award. Her debut thriller, Dark Waters is set in Tel Aviv amid the Israel-Palestine conflict and was a finalist for a Colorado Book Award, a Colorado Authors’ League Award and the Anthony Award for Best Crime Audiobook. Her most recent release, Red Sky, is set in Ukraine and Asia where DSS Agent Raisa Jordan tests the boundaries of diplomacy as she races to prevent the start of a new Cold War. She claims writing helps her believe there is justice in this world, whether by outcome or by murder.

Manuel Ramos, a retired lawyer and native of Colorado, is the author of nine novels and a short story collection. His fiction, often categorized as Chicano Noir, has received the Colorado Book Award (twice), the Chicano/Latino Literary Award, the Top Hand Award from the Colorado Authors League, and Honorable Mentions from the Latino International Book Awards. His first novel, The Ballad of Rocky Ruiz, was a finalist for the Edgar® award, and his latest, My Bad, was a finalist for the Shamus Award. He is a co-founder of and regular contributor to the award-winning Internet magazine La Bloga, which deals with Latino literature, culture, news and opinion.  His next novel will be published in September, 2018.

USA Today and #1 Denver Post bestselling author Carter Wilson explores the depths of psychological tension and paranoia in his dark, domestic thrillers. Carter is a two-time winner of the Colorado Book Award and his novels have received starred reviews from Publishers Weekly, Booklist, and Library Journal. Carter’s writing career began on a spring day in 2003, when an exercise to ward off boredom during a continuing-education class evolved into a 400-page manuscript. Since that day, Carter has been constantly writing, and his highly anticipated fifth novel, Mister Tender’s Girl, was released in February 2018 by Sourcebooks Landmark. He has also contributed short fiction to various publications, and will be featured in the R.L. Stine young-adult anthology Scream and Scream Again, releasing in 2018 from HarperCollins. 

Mario Acevedo - Colorado Book Festival Danger, Doom, & Destruction Moderator
Betsy Dornbusch - Colorado Book Festival Danger, Doom, & Destruction Panelist
Jon Bassoff - Colorado Book Festival Danger, Doom, & Destruction Panelist
Chris Mandeville - Colorado Book Festival Danger, Doom, & Destruction Panelist
Warren Hammond - Colorado Book Festival Danger, Doom, & Destruction Panelist
12:00 - 10th Mtn Division Room, 5th Floor
Danger, Doom and Destruction: Why Do We Love To Read About It ?!


This panel of master writers of horror and other scary stuff will talk about why vampires, zombies, murder and being scared to death is a perennial winner among readers.

Mario Acevedo, moderator, is the author of national bestselling speculative fiction and has won a Colorado Book Award. He serves on the faculty of the Regis University Mile-High MFA program and Lighthouse Writers.


Betsy Dornbusch is the author of several dark fantasy short stories, novellas, and novels. In addition to speaking at numerous conventions a year, she spent a decade editing the online magazine Electric Spec. She and her family live in Colorado.

Jon Bassoff was born in 1974 in New York City and currently lives with his family in a ghost town somewhere in Colorado. His mountain gothic novel, Corrosion, has been translated in French and German and was nominated for the Grand Prix de Litterature Policiere, France’s biggest crime fiction award. 


Chris Mandeville writes science fiction/fantasy and nonfiction for writers. She’s the Conference Director for Superstars Writing Seminars, served as Pikes Peak Writers’ president, and has taught writing workshops for 10+ years. Her books include Seeds: a post-apocalyptic adventure and 52 Ways to Get Unstuck: Exercises to Break Through Writer’s Block.


Warren Hammond has authored several science fiction novels, quite a few short stories, and a graphic novel. His 2012 novel, KOP Killer, won the Colorado Book Award for best mystery. His latest release from HarperCollins, Tides of Maritinia, is a spy novel set in a science fictional world.

Carol Grever  - Colorado Book Festival Is God In My Story? Moderator
Philip Yancey - Colorado Book Festival Is God In My Story? Panelist
Lindsey O'Connor - Colorado Book Festival Is God In My Story? Panelist
Rachel Kodanaz - Colorado Book Festival Is God In My Story? Panelist
1:00 - Gates Conference Room, 5th Floor
Is God In My  Story? Exploring Spiritual and Faith Elements of the Transformative Memoir.

 From traditional religious viewpoints to individual spirituality, faith is a powerful component in many memoirs of personal growth, healing and change. A panel of top authors that includes Christian, Buddhist, Jewish and other perspectives, will explore the power of faith in both the writing and reading of memoir. 

Carol Grever’s latest memoir, Turnings: Reflections on a Conscious Life, is a mosaic of courage.  Pivotal personal upheavals open extraordinary adventures, discoveries, and a spiritual awakening.  Known for her earlier books and documentary on mixed-orientation relationships, Carol reveals with unwavering honesty her own transformative "turnings" and ultimate understanding.


Philip Yancey was raised in Atlanta; earned graduate degrees from Wheaton College and University of Chicago; and resides in Colorado. He is a best-selling evangelical Christian author, who has written over 30 books. His works have been published in 35 languages, and have sold over 15 million copies.


Lindsey O’Connor is a multi-published author, journalist, producer, and co-owns a podcast production company. She’s contributed to Weekend America, podcasts, The Texas Standard public radio,, The Rocky Mountain News, Christianity Today, Writer’s Digest and is a former broadcaster. Her latest book is The Long Awakening, a memoir.


Rachel Kodanaz has been speaking passionately to national audiences for over 20 years, addressing all aspects of loss, change and growth. Her books, Living with Loss One Day at a Time, and Grief in the Workplace: A Comprehensive Guide for Being Prepared have received international acclaim.  She has been featured in a number of publications and has appeared on Good Morning America.

Denise Vega - Colorado BookFestival I Wanna Read That! Moderator
Cheryl Carpinello - Colorado BookFestival I Wanna Read That! Panelist
Jolene Gutierrez - Colorado BookFestival I Wanna Read That! Panelist
Amy Seto Forrester - Colorado BookFestival I Wanna Read That! Panelist
Judy Bulow - Colorado BookFestival I Wanna Read That! Panelist
2:00 - 10th Mtn Division Room, 5th Floor
I Wanna Read That! How to help children choose a book and/or matching a child’s reading level to a book

Getting kids to read can be a challenge, so guiding them to books that engage their interest, and are matched to their reading level, is critical. This panel of authors, school librarians and a children’s bookseller will explore ways to help individual kids find the best books for them.


Denise Vega, moderator, is an award-winning children’s book author and writing coach who believes in the power of story to entertain, inform, and change lives. Denise received her Ed.M. from Harvard University and is on the Board for Reach Out and Read Colorado, an organization supporting early literacy. 


Cheryl Carpinello is a retired high school English teacher and Author. Her education and profession introduced her to writings and authors from the Ancient and Medieval Worlds. Now, she hopes to inspire young readers and those Young-at-Heart to read more through her Tales and Legends for Reluctant Readers set in these worlds. 


Jolene Gutiérrez is a school librarian and author. She’s worked at Denver Academy, a private school for diverse learners, for the past 23 years, and she’s been writing for about 10 years. She knows that reading can change lives, and she loves helping kids find their perfect book.


Amy Seto Forrester (Children's Librarian, Denver Public Library) has a background in the performing arts and an MLS from Texas Woman’s University. Amy has served on Association for Library Services to Children committees, including Library Services for Special Populations Children and Their Caregivers, School-Age Programs and Services, and the 2016 Geisel Award. 


Judy Bulow has had over 30 years' experience as the frontlist and backlist buyer for the Tattered Cover Book Stores in Denver Colorado. Before that she taught preschool and worked at a day care center with kids two years to 6 years. She also worked for New Mexico Magazine in Santa Fe, NM.

Mary Taylor Young - Colorado Book Festival Comunicating Climate Change Moderator
Nolan Doesken - Colorado Book Festival Comunicating Climate Change Panelist
Lisa Hildago - Colorado Book Festival Comunicating Climate Change Panelist
1:00 - Rick Ashton Room, 7th Floor
Communicating Climate Change: Keeping Cool about A Hot Topic

 The impacts of climate change are increasingly evident, from furious storms and out-of-control wildfires to shrinking glaciers and extreme temperatures. With many readers still skeptical, how do writers and broadcast meteorologists effectively communicate about climate change? A nature writer and tv meteorologist discuss how to communicate this controversial topic.

Award-winning writer and naturalist Mary Taylor Young, Moderator, has been writing about the landscape and heritage of Colorado and the American West for 30 years. Her 17 books include Rocky Mountain National Park: The First 100 Years and Land of Grass and Sky: A Naturalist’s Prairie Journey.

Lisa Hidalgo is a Colorado native and absolutely loves her hometown. She graduated from Green Mountain High School and then the University of Colorado with a BS in Broadcast Journalism. Lisa's career has taken her all over Colorado. She started at KREX in Grand Junction and then worked at KRDO in Colorado Springs. She then took a 2-year hiatus from the state to work in Las Vegas at KVBC.

Nolan Doesken was born and raised in rural central Illinois and grew up fascinated by the weather.  After getting degrees from the University of Michigan and the University of Illinois in the mid 1970s, he headed west to become Colorado's Assistant State Climatologist in the Department of Atmospheric Science at Colorado State University.  In 2006 he was appointed State Climatologist and was responsible for monitoring current and historic weather conditions across the state and compiling data to support a variety of decision makers, planners and educators.  He retired in 2017 but remains active in climate communication.  After an extreme localized flash flood struck Fort Collins in 1997, Nolan helped establish a volunteer rain gauge network that is now nationwide -- the Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network (CoCoRaHS).

Kathryn Winograd - Colorado Book Festival Finding Real Poetry in a Fake News World Moderator
Dan Guenther - Colorado Book Festival Finding Real Poetry in a Fake News World Panelist
Art Elser - Colorado Book Festival Finding Real Poetry in a Fake News World Panelist
Laural Jean Becker - Colorado Book Festival Finding Real Poetry in a Fake News World Panelist
12:00 - Training Room 2, 7th Floor
Finding Real Poetry in a Fake News World: Why Truth and Beauty Matter 

Maya Angelou said that if you want to understand a people, a time or a culture, go to the poetry. This panel of Colorado poets will talk about why and how poetry is relevant more than ever in our tumultuous times.

Kathryn Winograd, Moderator, is the author of Phantom Canyon: Essays of Reclamation, a finalist in the ForeWord Reviews 2014, INDIEFAB Book of the Year Awards, Air Into Breath, winner of the Colorado Book Award in Poetry. Her essays have been noted in Best American Essays, and published in journals including Fourth Genre, Hotel Amerika, River Teeth, The Florida Review and The Fourth Genre: Contemporary Writers of/on Creative Nonfiction, 6th editon. She’s recently been chosen by AWP as its October Member in the Spotlight.


Dan Guenther, born in Waukegan, Illinois, in 1944, is an American writer. A graduate of Coe College, he has a Master of Fine Arts from the Iowa Writers' Workshop. He was a captain in the U.S. Marine Corps. His poems and letters from Vietnam, during the Vietnam War, were included in the acclaimed novel, The Stones of Summer by Dow Mossman, published by Bobbs-Merrill in 1972 and republished by Barnes & Noble in 2003. The Crooked Truth, his second book of collected poems, was the 2011 award selection for best poetry book.


Art Elser is a poet and writer whose poetry has been published in many journals and anthologies. His books include a memoir, What's It All About, Alfie?, and three poetry books, We Leave the Safety of the Sea, A Death at Tollgate Creek, and As The Crow Flies. He believes that in troubled times like this, people should have the beauty and calm of poetry in their lives. Especially to start the day. 


Laurel Jean Becker has won many national and regional awards for her work, including the Draft to Dream Competition award for her newest book, Tales from Weaver Pond, the Storyteller People’s Choice Award, Society of Southwestern Authors Award in both poetry and short stories, Poetry Society of Colorado 2006 and 2012 Sweepstakes Award and the National Writers Association Award for poetry—4th place nationally. In 2013, CBS News recognized Laurel as one of Denver’s top poets.

Patricia Raybon - Colorado Book Fetival Every Reader's Big Fat Secret Moderator
Dom Testa - Colorado Book Fetival Every Reader's Big Fat Secret Panelist
Patti Thorn - Colorado Book Fetival Every Reader's Big Fat Secret Panelist
2:00 - Training Room 1, 7th floor
Every Reader’s Big Fat Secret: I want to write a book too!

 Do you have a story inside you that you secretly want to tell? A character that is dying to find an audience? A skill you’d be crazy not to share? You’re not alone! This panel will help you get started down that writing journey.

Patricia Raybon, Moderator, writes top-rated books that dig deep into the intersection of Christian belief and everyday life. She is the award-winning author of My First White Friend, which won the Christopher Award; I Told the Mountain to Move, a 2006 Book of the Year Finalist in Christianity Today’s annual book contest; a One Year® devotional on Bible virtues entitled God’s Great Blessings; and Undivided: A Muslim Daughter, Her Christian Mother, Their Path to Peace. She speaks and teaches at writing conferences nationwide. 

Dom Testa is a writer, speaker, and the host of Denver’s top-rated morning radio show, The Dom and Jeremy Show, on Mix 100. His work won an international grand prize from Writer’s Digest Magazine, and has been highlighted as a Top Pick by the American Library Association. Dom helps unpublished writers become published authors with his online community called Big Fat Words. Find it at


Patti Thorn served 12 years as chief book critic and editor of the book review pages for the Rocky Mountain News, before its closing in 2009. Her book section earned acclaim for its incisive and timely reviews, as well as for Thorn’s weekly column about books and the publishing industry. In addition, she is the co-author of Fun Places to Go with Children in Colorado, published by Chronicle Books, which has enjoyed two printings and sold over 20,000 copies. She is also the co-founder and managing partner of BlueInk Review, a service devoted to reviewing independently published work. Since its inception in 2010, BlueInk has reviewed more than 6,000 titles and is trusted by readers, librarians and booksellers to provide honest assessments of self-published books. 

Chuck Greaves - Colorado Book Fesival Can They Really Say That? Moderator
Sheldon Friedman - Colorado Book Fesival Can They Really Say That? Panelist
Darin Gibby - Colorado Book Fesival Can They Really Say That? Panelist
2:00 - Training Room 2, 7th Floor
Can They Really Say That?:  Defamation, Plagiarism, and Writing Beyond the Legal Limit

We hear the term “Fake News” all the time. But what can writers legally put into print?  This interactive workshop of lawyer-writers will cover defamation, the right to privacy, the right of publicity, plagiarism, and fair use, and provide defensive strategies for writers.

Chuck Greaves, Moderator, spent 25 years as an L.A. trial lawyer before becoming a full-time writer.  He has been a finalist for most of the major awards in crime fiction including the Shamus, Macavity, Lefty, and Audie, as well as the New Mexico-Arizona, Oklahoma, and Colorado Book Awards.  He is the author of five novels, most recently Tom & Lucky (Bloomsbury), a Wall Street Journal "Best Books of 2015" selection and finalist for the 2016 Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction.  A voting member of the National Book Critics Circle, Chuck is also the book critic for the Four Corners Free Press newspaper in southwestern Colorado, where he currently lives.


Sheldon Friedman is a Denver lawyer/playwright/writer with an insatiable interest in movies, television history, and the performing arts. He is the author of two books, The Velvet Prison and The Satin Sash, and is presently working on the third book in his trilogy, The Silk Swan to be published in the first part of 2018. The Velvet Prison was a 2017 Colorado Author’s League Best Fiction finalist.


Darin Gibby is a patent attorney who is consistently ranked as one of the top intellectual property lawyers in the country. He is also a #1 Amazon Best Seller and the author of four books, including Gil, winner of the 2017 Colorado Author’s League award for Mainstream Fiction, and Chasing Hindy, a thriller about a patent attorney who thinks she has landed her dream job when she joins a startup that purports to have invented a car that can run on water.  He has been featured  in a number of publications, including The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, and the Huffington Post.

Page Lambert - Colorado Book Festival Colorado Stories Moderator
Margi Evans - Colorado Book Festival Colorado Stories Panelist
Bill Sonn - Colorado Book Festival Colorado Stories Moderator
Bill Sonn - Colorado Book Festival Colorado Stories Moderator
1:00 - 10th Mtn Division Room, 5th Floor
Colorado Stories, Peaks to Plains

Discover how four Colorado writers with diverse viewpoints use words to bridge landscape and story: standing atop a 12,000-foot peak, riding horseback on mountain trails, telling stories of the 10th Mountain Division and German POWs, and linking Colorado’s epic past to its rapidly changing present. 

An advisor for the Rocky Mountain Land Library and member of the International League of Conservation Writers, Page Lambert, Moderator, has been writing about the western landscape and leading nature retreats in the West for twenty years. Founding member of Women Writing the West, member of Wyoming Writers and Colorado Authors’ League, Lambert’s writing can be found inside monumental sculptures at the Denver Art Museum, online at Huffington Post, and inside the pages ofdozens of anthologies. She designs and teaches graduate writing courses for the University of Denver’s University College. Recent published works include “Not for Sale” (Langscape Magazine and “The Rural West,” included in Fulcrum’s new book, The Light Shines from the West. Lambert writes All Things Literary/All Things Natural from her mountain home west of Denver


Award-winning author, M.J. Evans is an avid equestrian and loves to write both fiction and non-fiction books about horses. Her first books were equestrian trail guide books for Colorado. Her fiction titles, written for middle grade and young adult are also centered around horses, whether real or fantasy.

Bill Sonn is author of Paradigms Lost: the life and deaths of the printed word and the forthcoming A Treason, Forgotten. The latter is the history of a misfit U.S. Army unit based at Camp Hale near Leadville during World War II. There they met German POWs, plotted insurrection and were stopped and sentenced to hang for trying to pull it off. And then (spoiler alert) they prospered. Bill has long been a writer (Columbia Journalism Review, Chicago magazine, The Progressive, more), editor (College Press Service, Straight Creek Journal, Healthcare Advertising Review) and businessman (UCHealth) in Colorado as he watched the state transform itself and begin to generate a literature of its own.

Jerry Fabyanic is an Author, KYGT talk-show host, columnist, blogger, retired teacher of high and middle school English and social studies, intellectual provocateur with an impudent sense of humor who will kill for a day through the powder and bumps at Mary Jane, voracious reader that salivates while discovering new worlds in literature, hiker and distance runner that sucks the marrow out of life while gasping for oxygen at 8500 feet, and condescending beer snob who considers imbibing beer not micro-brewed in Colorado a sacrilege deserving a fate worse than Dante’s seven levels of hell. 

Cassi Clark - Colorado Book Festival Writing as Activism Moderator
Marcia Goldstein - Colorado Book Festival Writing as Activism Panelist
Tamara Banks - Colorado Book Festival Writing as Activism Panelist
Ausma Zehanat Khan - Colorado Book Festival Writing as Activism Panelist
Callie Renninson - Colorado Book Festival Writing as Activism Panelist
1:00 - Training Room 3, 7th Floor
Writing as Activism: Women Write Truth to Power 

Protesting is an American institution. But it is often the written word that inspires us to make or demand change. In this panel, five inspiring women will discuss their experiences as writers and advocates, and the effect writing has on our world. 

Cassi Clark, Moderator, is an author and an essay contributor to We Rise to Resist: Voices from a New Era in Women's Political Action Edited by Paula vW. Dáil and Betty L. Wells (forthcoming). A Colorado native, she has a Bachelor’s in Journalism from the University of Oregon, and a Master’s of Public Administration from University of Colorado, Denver. As a novelist and essayist, her work centers around the power of women, both individually and collectively.


Dr. Marcia Tremmel Goldstein holds an M.A. in American history from University of Colorado at Denver, and a Ph.D. in American West and Women’s History at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Her dissertation, “’Meet Me at the Ballot Box:’ Women’s Innovations in Party and Electoral Politics in Post-Suffrage Colorado, 1893-1898,” traces the bold footsteps of Colorado’s suffrage leaders, including leading female journalists, into the all-male arena of political parties and elections after winning full voting rights in 1893.  She is the author of Denver Women in Their Places: A Guide to Women’s History Sites (Historic Denver, Inc., 2002). Stemming from her focus on suffrage and the political history of women in the American West, she has served as a consultant for One Woman, One Vote (part of the PBS series American Experience). She curated and authored This Shall Be the Land for Women: The Struggle for Suffrage in the West (2000), an online exhibit for the Women of the West Museum. 

For Emmy Award winning journalist, Tamara Banks, the statement, “One Person Can Make a Difference,” is more than just words. Her life experiences, connectibility and sense of humor have made her a sought after keynote speaker and emcee. Tamara is a freelance journalist, talk show host and documentary filmmaker. Her areas of expertise include: social justice and political issues, nationally and internationally, particularly in South Sudan and Darfur, and other parts of the globe where there is little or no news coverage about crimes against humanity and genocide. Her documentary short film, “The Long Journey Home,” was accepted into the 2009 Hollywood Film Festival, “HollyShorts.” Her work has been featured on numerous news networks including CNN, ABC News, HDNet's World Report, BBC, Al Jazeera America, WB 2 News, FOX News, as well on as a number of radio stations and newspapers over the past 20 years.

Dr. Ausma Zehanat Khan is the author of the award-winning debut novel The Unquiet Dead, the first in the Khattak/Getty mystery series. Her subsequent novels include the critically acclaimed The Language of Secrets and Among the Ruins. Her latest mystery in the series is A Dangerous Crossing. The Khattak/Getty mystery series has been optioned for television by Lionsgate, and Ausma is also the author of a fantasy series for Harper Voyager. The Bloodprint, Book One of the Khorasan Archives was published in October 2017. Ausma holds a Ph.D. in international human rights law with a specialization in military intervention and war crimes in the Balkans. A British-born Canadian and former adjunct law professor, she now lives in Colorado with her husband. 


Dr. Callie Marie Rennison is a Professor in the School of Public Affairs (SPA) at the University of Colorado Denver. Callie’s research focuses on violence against women and other marginalized groups. In particular, she examine the nature, extent, and consequences of violent victimization with an emphasis on research methodology, quantitative analysis, measurement, and crime data. Her research has appeared in academic journals such as the Journal of Quantitative Criminology, Justice Quarterly, Violence and Victims, and Violence Against Women. While she has authored several books, her Introduction to Criminal Justice: Systems, Diversity and Change (with Dr. Mary Dodge) recently captured the attention of the public where it has been described as the textbook that made Brock Turner the definition of sexual violence.

Barb Lundy - Colorado Book Festival More Than Wine and Gossip
Stacey Bloomfield - Colorado Book Festival More Than Wine and Gossip
Lance Morgan - Colorado Book Festival More Than Wine and Gossip Panelist
Darlene Sanders - Colorado Book Festival More Than Wine and Gossip Panelist
12:00 - Rick Ashton Room, 7th Floor
More Than Wine and Gossip: Keeping a Book Club Focused On Books 

It happens too often: a thriving book club slowly becomes more about socializing and chat until reading books drops off the map. Join this discussion from book club leaders and members, writers and booksellers on how to keep book clubs on track

Two things learned in childhood influence Barb Lundy’s writing: Most questions have several right answers, and metaphors tell long stories at a glance.  A widely published poet, Barb also writes non-fiction. Her new book, Connections Count provides critical thinking and problem-solving strategies. 

Stacey Bloomfield is Book Club Outreach Coordinator and a retail manager at the Tattered Cover. When she isn't busy putting books in people's hands she's out in her garden or in the mountains with her family or sneaking off to coffee shops with her latest read. She credits her love of reading to her father, who read out loud to her almost every day as a child. He taught her that Sherlock Holmes was for rainy nights by the window and early mornings were an excellent time to explore the 1920s textbooks that he collected at tag sales.

Lance Morgan is a 23-year-old bookseller at BookBar in Denver. He’s from a town outside Hartford, Connecticut where he would spend his weekends at the library reading instead of doing homework. He was never allowed to get a library card because he would never return books on time. He had to reread them at least four times.  After getting a degree in Film and Media Arts at the University of Tampa, he moved to Denver for a fresh start. He love his job at BookBar and is so grateful for the opportunity to bring the joy of reading to others. One thing he loves to do is connect people of all ages together to talk about books they’ve read. He believes that books clubs are an essential part of understanding and appreciating literature.


Darleen Sanders's first memory was of her grandfather reading to her. She could hardly wait to learn to read.  She has never stopped reading since then.  As an adult, she was delighted when a friend introduced her to Thursday afternoon book club. She is looking forward to dissucing her love of reading and book club community in this panel.

Book Club for Kids - Colorado Book Festival
Anna Jo Haynes- Colorado Book Festival Celebrity Reader
Kitty Felde- Colorado Book Festival Book Club for Kids Podcast
Denise Vega - Colorado Book Festival Book Club for Kids Author
12:00 - Gates Conference Room, 5th Floor
Book Club for Kids Podcast

Listen to the recorded podcast here or on your favorite podcast app.

It’s a book club. It’s a podcast. It’s for middle grade readers, grades 5 to 9. Join in the fun as author Denise Vega discusses her book, Click Here: How I Survived Seventh Grade, with three kid readers, recorded as a podcast. Bring your comments and questions for the microphone! Anna Jo Haynes will be the Celebrity Reader.

Anna Jo Haynes is a storied education leader in Denver (founder of Headstart in Denver, founder of Mile High Montessori, cofounder of the Colorado Children’s Campaign and the Women’s Foundation of Colorado, a leader of the Denver Preschool Campaign, a giant in minority affairs and a long-time education advisor to mayors, governors and presidents.

 Denise Vega is an award-winning children’s book author and writing coach who believes in the power of story to entertain, inform, and change lives. Denise received her Ed.M. from Harvard University and is on the Board for Reach Out and Read Colorado, an organization supporting early literacy. 

Kitty Felde is the host and executive producer of the Book Club for Kids podcast, awarded the DC Mayor's award for "Excellence in the Humanities." She’s a veteran public radio journalist who writes plays and kids books. Her great-grandfather and great-great uncle were unsuccessful silver miners in Nederland, Colorado. Book Club for Kids began on Kitty's public radio talk show.

John Stansfield - Colorado Book Festival Children's Storytellers & Readings Reader
Children’s Storytellers & Reading To Kids:

Everybody loves a good story! Come hear professional storytellers bring to life characters and stories from history.

12:00 & 1:00 - Study Room West, 5th Floor

John Stansfield presents Short Stories from Great Books, ages 5+.
For more than thirty-five years, storyteller and author John Stansfield has recounted stories from the American West and the world. He reenacts the lives of national park pioneers Enos Mills and John Otto, as well as Charles Fox Gardiner, frontier physician.  He authored biographies, Enos Mills: Rocky Mountain Naturalist and John Denver: Man for the World.  His book Writers of the American West: Multicultural Learning Encounters  earned a Colorado Authors’ League Award and was a finalist for the Colorado Book Award. The folkloric fiction collection, Rocky Mountain Stories, will appear in 2018. A former classroom teacher, John has shared stories with more than a million people nationwide (not all at once). He is the founder of the Rocky Mountain Storytelling Festival.

1:00 & 2:00 - Study Room East, 5th Floor

Linda Batlin vividly tells the story of courageous female physician from Colorado’s past, Doc Susie

Linda Batlin is a storyteller and author from Boulder, Colorado. She tells stories filled with wisdom and mirth for all ages in schools, libraries, festivals, museums, and other events. Her living history presentations of important women characters from Colorado history bring them to life. Her repertoire is also filled with multicultural folktales from around the world such as Asian stories, animal stories, ghost stories, Jewish folktales, nature stories, puppets.

Linda Batlin - Colorado Book Festival Children's Storytellers & Readings Reader
Patty Limerick - Colorado Book Festival Keynote Speaker
3:00 - Training Room, 7th Floor
CLOSING KEYNOTE – A History of Conquest: A Not Always Nice Look at How the West was “Won” (3pm, Gates Conference Room) 

Patty Limerick is the Faculty Director and Chair of the Board of the Center of the American West at the University of Colorado, where she is also a Professor of History. In this interactive keynote program, historian and author Richard K Young will interview Patty, exploring the story of the American West in light of the 30th anniversary of her book, Legacy of Conquest.


Limerick has dedicated her career to bridging the gap between academics and the general public and to demonstrating the benefits of applying historical perspective to contemporary dilemmas and conflicts. In January 2016 she became the Colorado State Historian. In addition, in January 2016 she was appointed to the National Endowment for the Humanities advisory board, the National Council on the Humanities. Patty was nominated by President Obama in Spring 2015 and was confirmed by the United States Senate in November 2015.

In 1985 Patty published Desert Passages, followed in 1987 by her best-known work, The Legacy of Conquest, an overview and reinterpretation of Western American history that has stirred up a great deal of both academic and public debate. In 2012 she published A Ditch in Time: The City, the West, and Water, a history of water in Denver. Limerick is also a prolific essayist, and many of her most notable articles, including “Dancing with Professors: The Trouble with Academic Prose,” were collected in 2000 under the title Something in the Soil.

Rick Young is a Colorado Book Award winner for The Ute Indians of Colorado in the Twentieth Century, published by the University of Oklahoma Press.  This book takes a comparative look at the modern experiences of two neighboring Ute tribes, the Southern Utes and the Ute Mountain Utes.  Rick has an MA in US History from the University of Colorado, Denver, where he focused on Native American history.  Rick taught history for 25 years at Daniel C. Oakes High School, the Douglas County Schools alternative high school in Castle Rock.  Since retiring from teaching in 2016, Rick has redirected his exploration of the West--particularly the Southwest—through the lens of art.  His paintings of southern Colorado and northern New Mexico landscapes can be seen at Acosta-Strong Fine Art in Santa Fe.

Rick Young - Colorado Book Festival Keynote Speaker
"Horses at Night" by Frank Mechau at the Denver Public Library

12pm & 2pm - Library Art tours

Meet on the 7th floor to see the impressive Denver Public Library complete collection. The Central Branch of the Denver Public Library is alive with art work of all kinds. Join Western History and Genealogy Department Manager for an insider's look at DPL's art treasures. 

11am, 1pm & 3pm - Library behind the scene tours

At 585,000 square feet, the Michael Graves designed Central Branch of the Denver Public Library is one of Denver's most distinctive buildings. Join Western History Special Collections Librarian Brian Trembath for an in-depth tour of this beloved building. Meet on the 7th floor. 

Michael Graves Central Library addition, Denver


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