2022 Conference Schedule

Friday June 3rd: 

1:00 pm - 5:00 pm - On-site registration and conference bookstore open. 

1:00 pm - 4:30 pm - Pitch Sessions (your scheduled time will be provided to you in an email)

2:00 pm - 4:00 pm - Critique Tables

5:00 pm - Cash bar opens

5:30 pm - 6:30 pm - Appetizers

6:30 pm - 8:30 pm - Evening Program/Writing Contest Awards + Dessert and Coffee

8:30 pm - 10:00 pm - Open Mic


Saturday June 4th:

7:30 am - 9:00 am - Breakfast

7:30 am - Noon - On-site registration open.

8:00 am - 4:45 pm - Conference bookstore open.

9:00 am - Noon - Morning Pitch Sessions (your scheduled time will be provided to you in an email)

9:30 - 10:30 am - Faculty Sessions

"The Athletic Art of Discipline" with Vi Khi Nao
How to apply sport techniques (tennis, football, etc.) to advance the craft of writing.
"Origin of Tribal Thought" with Henry Real Bird
How physical surroundings influenced indigenous people's sense of time, spirituality, and storytelling. Participants will use their senses to 'show not tell.'
"Writing Better Dialogue" with William Missouri Downs
This session covers lessons playwrights have learned about writing character-driven dialogue, including subtext, word choice, sound, imagery, tempo, and how to hide obvious exposition. It also includes methods to make each of your characters sound unique.
"You, the Protagonist:  Developing Your Character Brand" with Caroline George
To find success as digital age authors, writers must develop lasting brands that showcase their personality, writing style and target audience. In this workshop, Caroline George leads attendees through various steps to help them determine their personal brands, social media voices and plans for further development.

10:45 - 11:45 - Member Sessions

"What My Damned Second Novel Is Teaching Me About Writing a First One" with Richard Tuttle

"Mining Your Memories" with Barbara Smith

"The Whys and Woes of Self-Publishing" with Steve Rzasa

"Make Every Word Count—The Art of Flash Fiction" with Reatha Thomas Oakley

Noon - 1:30 pm - Lunch:  Service Awards

1:45 pm - 4:00 pm - Afternoon Pitch Sessions (your scheduled time will be provided to you in an email)

1:45 pm - 2:45 pm - Faculty Sessions

"The Magic of Productivity:  How to write effortlessly and quickly." with Vi Khi Nao

In this session, we will learn how to set impossible goals and achieve them. We will learn how to carve time for our writing (emotionally, psychically, and intellectually).

"Sacred Writing" with Jessica Kristie

Do you ever feel out of your element as a writer? Writing is a business, and what that means can feel overwhelming when you just want to write!

Together we will be going over:

  • Writer Do’s and Don’ts – some important do’s and don’ts as an author
  • Writer Goals – what are some goals successful writers have?
  • The Finished Product – I’m done with my manuscript, now what?
  • The Author – I’m now published or going to be published, what should I do to prepare and what looks like.
  • The Publisher – What is the role of my publisher?
  • What’s Next – My book is out, what’s next?

Q&A to follow.

"Character Development" with William Missouri Downs

This session covers how to conceive and write interesting characters by looking at the world through their POV. Further lessons in character include choices, motivation, internal conflicts, moral struggles, self-doubt, arcs and, in particular, the limits of self-knowledge.

"Creating a Large Historical Manuscript" with Donovin Sprague

Research and inspiration that comes from visits to Wyoming and area historical sites I have visited as part of the creating process. The balance in using primary sources of history. Oral histories, interviews with elders, tours & trips to historic sites I write about. Primary sources, working with Native people who have different values, interest, trust.

3:00 pm - 4:00 pm - Faculty Sessions

"Assimilation and Change" with Henry Real Bird

Westward expansion had drastic influence on the tribal way of life. storytelling continues to be the glue that holds the culture together. through pictographs, writing and oral stories participants will learn different storytelling methods.

"The Intersection of Author & Publisher" with Jessica Kristie

A look at how we as writers can stay healthy in challenging times and vulnerable moments. Tips for selfcare to keep your pen and heart flowing.

Together we will discuss:

  • Challenges as a writer & a human – being a writer is a series of vulnerable moments. What does that look like and what extra challenges do we face?
  • How to navigate and use the emotion – tips on how we can use emotion to write and to heal including some journal prompts for grief writing
  • Avoiding Burnout – what does avoiding burnout look like?
  • Adding “Sacred” to life and your writing process – what is sacred and how can you make it work for you? All about tapping into the healing parts of who we are to find healing, be creative, and be our best selves.

Q&A to follow.

"Plot Development" with William Missouri Downs

This session will cover the many ways a writer can develop a story. Methods include how to take Hollywood screenwriting formula to non-formulaic  techniques. These techniques help the writer build a character-driven story with an engaging, dramatic, well-structured plot and characters who drive the story with energy.

"Plotted For a Purpose:  Writing with Your Audience In Mind" with Caroline George

Incorporating elements of her public relations background, Caroline talks about the importance of purpose plotting—writing for a predetermined audience. She shares how purpose plotting boosts a book’s marketability and teaches attendees ways to target their audience, connect their book’s plot/message to their brand and convey their marketability to publishing professionals.

4:15 pm - 5:15 pm - Craig Johnson:  Plenary Session and Q&A

Musings, anecdotes, and milestones. Enjoy an hour-long plenary session (scheduled by itself with no other faculty session interruptions) and Q&A with the author made famous for his Longmire book series.

5:30 pm - 6:30 pm - Cocktail Hour and Book Signing

6:30 pm - 8:30 pm - Banquet:  Keynote Speaker Craig Johnson

8:30 pm - 10:30 pm - Open Mic


Sunday June 5th:

7:30 am - 9:15 am - Breakfast

8:00 am - 10:00 am - Paddle Panel

8:30 am - 10:30 am - Conference bookstore open

10:15 am - 11:30 am - Conference Closing Session and General Membership Meeting. Board elections!


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