Writing the Rockies Panelist Bios

The distinguished participants in this summer's conference are all active and successful authors, poets, screenwriters, or publishing professionals. In addition to our graduate program faculty, other speakers and presenters join us from all over the country. This page includes all presenter biographies. Biographies of Workshop and Critical Seminar leaders and of participants in the Poetry Symposium can also be found on the pages with the descriptions of those programs.

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Ned Balbo’s The Trials of Edgar Poe and Other Poems (Story Line Press) received the 2012 Poets’ Prize and the 2010 Donald Justice Prize. His previous books are Lives of the Sleepers (University of Notre Dame Press; Ernest Sandeen Prize and ForeWord Book of the Year Gold Medal) and Galileo’s Banquet (Washington Writers’ Publishing House; Towson University Prize co-winner). He has received three Maryland Arts Council grants, the Robert Frost Foundation Poetry Award, and the John Guyon Literary Nonfiction Prize. His poems, translations, reviews, and flash fictions are out or forthcoming in Able Muse, Cimarron Review, The Common, Hopkins Review, Iowa Review, Measure, Pleiades, River Styx, Sou’Wester, and elsewhere. He was cowinner of the 2013 Willis Barnstone Translation Prize. He lives in Baltimore with his wife, poet-essayist Jane Satterfield.

Kim Bridgford is the editor of Mezzo Cammin and the founder of The Mezzo Cammin Women Poets Timeline Project, launched at the National Museum of Women in the Arts in 2010. Formerly director of the West Chester University Poetry Center and the West Chester University Poetry Conference, she is the author of eight books of poetry, including Bully Pulpit and Doll.  She was the recipient of a Ucross fellowship.

Eleanor Brown is the New York Times and international bestselling author of The Weird Sisters, hailed by People magazine as “a delightful debut” and “creative and original” by Library Journal. The Weird Sisters was also a winner of the Colorado Book Award. An avid CrossFit participant, Eleanor is the author of WOD Motivation and a contributor to CrossFit Journal. Her fiction and non-fiction has appeared in magazines, newspapers, and journals. Eleanor teaches writing workshops at The Writers' Table in Highlands Ranch, CO, and at conferences and writing centers nationwide.

Born and raised in Houston, Texas, Sigman Byrd is the author of two books: Wake Up, Sleepwalker (2014), edited by David J. Rothman for Conundrum Press as the inaugural volume of the Rocky Mountain Poetry Series, and Under the Wanderer’s Star, which won the 2005 Marsh Hawk Press Poetry Prize. A graduate of Sarah Lawrence and the Iowa Writers’ workshop, he received his doctorate in creative writing and literature from the University of Utah. Sigman’s poems have appeared in Alaska Quarterly Review, American Poetry Review, Antioch Review, Georgia Review, Gulf Coast, Ploughshares, Poetry, Poetry Daily, Prairie Schooner, Plume, and many other journals. He teaches writing at the University of Colorado, Boulder and lives in Westminster with his wife, Renata, and their two daughters.

Thomas Cable has devoted a lifetime to the study of the English language and its prosodic development in poetry. Now emeritus professor of English at the University of Texas at Austin, he has also taught in France and at the University of Illinois. Among his books are A History of the English Language (with Albert C. Baugh) and The English Alliterative Tradition. His interests range from the metrics of Old English verse to the treatment of meter by today’s New Formalists.

Maryann Corbett grew up in McLean, Virginia. She now lives in St. Paul, Minnesota and works for the Minnesota Legislature. Trained as a medievalist and linguist, she holds a doctorate in English from the University of Minnesota. A winner of the Lyric Memorial Award and cowinner of the Willis Barnstone Translation Prize, she received the 2014 Richard Wilbur Award for her third book, Mid Evil (University of Evansville Press); her previous books are Breath Control (David Robert Books) and Credo for the Checkout Line in Winter (Able Muse Press). Her poems, essays, and translations have appeared in Atlanta Review, Barrow Street, The Dark Horse, Evansville Review, Measure, Mezzo Cammin, Rattle, River Styx, and more. She is married to John Corbett, a teacher of mathematics and statistics. They have two grown children.

Diana Pharaoh Francis has written several fantasy series. The Path trilogy, which includes Path of Fate (nominated for the Mary Roberts Rinehart Award), Path of Honor and Path of Blood, is epic fantasy. She has also written the Crosspointe Chronicles, including The Cipher, The Black Ship, The Turning Tide, and The Hollow Crown. She also writes The Horngate Witches series, Bitter Night (nominated for the RT Best Urban Fantasy 2010), Crimson Wind (Nominated for the RT best Urban Fantasy Heroine, 2011), and Shadow City (a Top Pick at RT), and Blood Winter. Her latest book is Trace of Magic, a Diamond City Magic novel. For more information, including a printable book list, maps of her worlds, updated news, and other odd and fun tidbits, go to www.dianapfrancis.com. You can also find her on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Diana-Pharaoh-Francis-Fantasy-Writer/1630... and on twitter at @dianapfrancis.

Natalie Gerber is Associate Professor of English at SUNY Fredonia. Her essays on modernist poetry and poetics have appeared or are forthcoming in journals such as Thinking Verse, Style, and Paideuma. She has organized poetics seminars and workshops at the West Chester Poetry Conferences, the Modernist Studies Association, and the Conference on College Composition and Communication. She is currently at work on A Poet’s Field Guide to the English Language.

Emily Grosholz is a poet and philosopher. She teaches philosophy of science and British and Irish poetry at the Pennsylvania State University, where she is also a member of the Center for Fundamental Theory / Institute for Gravitation and the Cosmos; and she has been an advisory editor of The Hudson Review for thirty years. She is the author of seven books of poetry (including a recent volume of poems that play with mathematical ideas and vocabulary) and three books on philosophical topics. She has also edited or co-edited seven collections of essays, including most recently a special issue of Studies in the History and Philosophy of Modern Physics on “Time and Modern Cosmology,” with essays by Abhay Ashtekar, Jeremy Butterfield, Lee Smolin, John Norton, Julian Barbour and Gordon Fleming. She previously edited a special issue of Studia Leibnitiana on “Leibniz, Time and History,” and authored the article “Space and Time” in the Oxford Handbook of Philosophy in Early Modern Europe (2011). Recent critical essays on poems by Eleanor Wilner, W. S. Di Piero, Deborah Greger, Dylan Thomas, John Keats, Anne Stevenson, Weldon Kees, Yves Bonnefoy, and Olga Sedakova examine space and time both as structural features and as topics for meditation in their poetry.

Diana Tixier Herald, series editor of the Genreflecting (Libraries Unlimited/ABC CLIO) series of readers’ advisory books that help librarians guide readers to their patrons next great reads, has written several books on genre fiction. Her titles include, Genreflecting, Fluent in Fantasy, Strictly Science Fiction, and Teen Genreflecting. She is a longtime reviewer for Booklist, and her reviews have been published in several other periodicals as well as online. A frequent speaker on genre fiction at genre and library conferences, she has spoken at the World Science Fiction Convention, the Historical Novel Society Conference, DragonCon, the American Library Association, and the New South Wales Readers Advisory conference among others. She is a voracious reader, consuming hundreds of novels a year.

Elizabyth A. Hiscox is the author of Inventory from a One-Hour Room. She has edited several poetry magazines, and her own poems have been widely published. The recipient of grants from the Arizona Commission on the Arts and the Vermont Studio Center, she has served as Poet-in-Residence at Durham University (UK). She currently teaches creative writing at Western Colorado State University.

Alissa Johnson is an award-winning writer and writing coach. Her work has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Dirt Rag Magazine, Mountain Gazette, and Green Woman Magazine among other publications. She has been a correspondent for the Forbes Travel Guide and an associate editor at the Crested Butte News. The Colorado Press Association has recognized her work in the categories of best sports column, best environmental writing, and best series, and her essay “Don’t Look Down” won the 2011 FundsforWriters contest. Learn more at www.WritingStrides.com.

David Mason’s books of poems include The Buried Houses (winner of the Nicholas Roerich Poetry Prize), The Country I Remember (winner of the Alice Fay Di Castagnola Award), and Arrivals. His verse novel, Ludlow, was published in 2007, and named best poetry book of the year by the Contemporary Poetry Review and the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum. It was also featured on the PBS News Hour. Author of a collection of essays, The Poetry of Life and the Life of Poetry, his memoir, News from the Village, appeared in 2010. A new collection of essays, Two Minds of a Western Poet, followed in 2011. Mason has also co-edited several textbooks and anthologies, including Western Wind: An Introduction to Poetry, Rebel Angels: 25 Poets of the New Formalism, Twentieth Century American Poetry, and Twentieth Century American Poetics: Poets on the Art of Poetry. His poetry, prose and translations have appeared in such periodicals as The New Yorker, Harper’s, The Nation, The New Republic, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Times Literary Supplement, Poetry, Agenda, Modern Poetry in Translation, The New Criterion, The Yale Review, The Hudson Review, The American Scholar, The Irish Times, and The Southern Review. Anthologies include Best American Poetry and others. He has also written the libretti for composer Lori Laitman’s opera of The Scarlet Letter and her oratorio, Vedem. He recently won the Thatcher Hoffman Smith Creativity in Motion Prize for the development of a new libretto based upon Ludlow. His one-act opera with composer Tom Cipullo, After Life, will premiere in Seattle in 2015. A former Fulbright Fellow to Greece, he served as Poet Laureate of Colorado from 2010 to 2014, and teaches at Colorado College. In 2014-15 Mason will publish two new poetry collections: Sea Salt: Poems of a Decade and Davey McGravy: A Story in Verse to Be Read Aloud to Children and Adult Children. He is a member of the Advisory Board of the Graduate program in Creative Writing at Western.

Larry Meredith is the owner and publisher of Raspberry Creek Books, Ltd.  He is the author of the historical novel This Cursed Valley and has a second novel in the hands of a literary agent.  He has written hundreds of published essays and newspaper and magazine articles.  In his career he has been a newspaper man, a salesman, an advertising and sales promotion writer for a Fortune 500 company, a university public relations director, and has owned his own marketing and video production company.  A former administrator for Western State Colorado University as well as executive director of a library district, Larry has also directed the Certificate in Publishing program for Western.

Candace Nadon has an MFA in Fiction from Stone coast Low-Residency MFA in Creative Writing and a PhD in English with Creative Concentration from Georgia State University. Her fiction, poetry, and lyric essays have appeared or are forthcoming in Hartskill Review in The Fourth River, Platte Valley Review, Dogwood: A Journal of Poetry and Prose, and Mary: A Journal of New Writing, among others. She edited the book Our Place Two, and contributed to the forthcoming textbook Primary Research and Writing. Candace is a fifth generation Coloradan and currently lives in Durango, CO, where she teaches at Fort Lewis College and is working on a novel.

Angela Alaimo O’Donnell teaches English at Fordham University in New York City and serves as Associate Director of Fordham’s Curran Center for American Catholic Studies. O’Donnell.has published three collections of poems, Saint Sinatra, Moving House, and Waking My Mother, and two chapbooks MINE and Waiting for Ecstasy.  A sixth book of poems, Lovers’ Almanac, is forthcoming in 2015. Her poems have appeared in many journals and has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize, the Best of the Web Award, and the Arlin G. Meyer Prize in Imaginative Writing.  In addition to her books of poems, O’Donnell has recently published a memoir, Mortal Blessings, and a biography and introduction to the work of Flannery O’Connor.   Her website is at http://angelaalaimoodonnell.com/.

Randall Potts is the author of Trickster (2014), published by the University of Iowa Press in its Kuhl House poetry series. His debut, Collision Center, appeared from O Books in 1994; the same year, Leave Books released his chapbook, Recant: (A Revision). His poems have appeared in American Poetry Review, Antioch Review, Colorado Review, Denver Quarterly, Five Fingers Review, Iowa Review, Jung Journal: Culture & Psyche, The West Marin Review, Unsplendid and many others. A graduate of the Iowa Writer’s Workshop, he has taught creative writing at the graduate and undergraduate levels at the University of San Francisco and California College of the Arts. He volunteered as an intern at a wildlife rehabilitation hospital and worked on several oil spill responses. He lives in Berkeley, California.

Peter Quigley is Associate Vice President of Academic Affairs for the University of Hawaii System. Previously, he served as Interim Vice Chancellor at University of Hawaii, Manoa, Dean at Minnesota State University and Provost at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University. He also has held professorships in the US and Europe, and he was awarded two consecutive Fulbrights to the University of Bergen, Norway. Currently, in addition to his administrative position, he holds the position of Professor of English at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. He has written on environmental issues in American literature and in theory. He most recent book is called Housing the Environmental Imagination: Politics, Beauty and Refuge in American Nature Writing. He is currently editing a collection of articles dealing with beauty and aesthetics in ecocriticism.  Quigley has a BA and MA from California State University, Fullerton and a PhD from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

Michael D. Riley’s first book of poems, Scrimshaw: Citizens of Bone, was published by The Lightning Tree Press in Santa Fe, NM. Circling the Stones (poems from Ireland), appeared in 2007 from Creighton University Press. Ashore Here, a meditative collection with a seashore setting, was published in 2008 by March Street Press. Players, a collection of narrative and character-driven poems, also appeared in 2008, from Turning Point. Green Hills: Memoir Poems appeared in 2013 from Finishing Line Press. He has poems in two recent anthologies, Irish American Poetry From the Eighteenth Century to the Present and Blood to Remember: American Poets on the Holocaust. His poems have appeared in many periodicals, including Poetry, Poetry Ireland Review, South Carolina Review, Cumberland Poetry Review, The Fiddlehead, Atlanta Review, and Southern Humanities Review. He is Emeritus Professor of English from Penn State University.

Michaela Roessner holds an MFA in Popular Fiction from the University of Southern Maine. She has published four novels, as well as assorted short fiction and nonfiction in publications that include Asimov’s Magazine, The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, OMNI Magazine, Canada’s Room Magazine and anthologies that include Full Spectrum 2 and Intersections. Her first novel, Walkabout Woman, won the Crawford and John W. Campbell awards. She has also had work short-listed for the Calvino Prize, the Tiptree Award, and the Millennium Publishing short fiction contest. Her current major projects include a number of short fiction pieces, finishing up her novel The Waters of Babylon, completing the last of her trio of novels that center around the early life of Catherine de Medici, and participating in several group ekphrastic commissions.​

Jane Satterfield’s most recent book is Her Familiars (Elixir, 2013). She is the author of two previous poetry collections: Assignation at Vanishing Point, and Shepherdess with an Automatic, as well as Daughters of Empire: A Memoir of a Year in Britain and Beyond. Her honors include a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in poetry and three Maryland Arts Council Individual Artists Awards, the William Faulkner Society's Gold Medal for the Essay, the Florida Review Editors’ Prize in nonfiction, the Mslexia women’s poetry prize, and the 49th Parallel Poetry Prize from The Bellingham Review as well as residencies in poetry or nonfiction from the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. Satterfield is literary editor for Canada’s Journal of the Motherhood Initiative for Research and Community Involvement and currently lives in Baltimore where she teaches at Loyola University Maryland.

Jan Schreiber is a poet and critic whose work has gained a wide audience with the publication of his recent book Sparring with the Sun, a collection of essays on twentieth-century poets and theories of poetry. A founder of Canto: Review of the Arts and a co-founder of the annual Symposium on Poetry Criticism at Western State Colorado University, he is also a visiting scholar at Brandeis University and a study group leader at the university’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, with a special interest in Renaissance and modern verse. Previous books of poetry include Digressions, Wily Apparitions, Bell Buoys, and two books of translations: A Stroke upon the Sea and Sketch of a Serpent. His poems appear in both print and on-line anthologies. His newest collection is Peccadilloes. He is co-founder of the Symposium on Poetry Criticism at Writing the Rockies.

Caleb J. Seeling is the Director of Western's Certificate in Publishing. He began working in publishing in 2006 and founded Samizdat Publishing Group in Denver in 2009. The company has since expanded, forming three imprints (Conundrum Press, Conundrum Faith, and Samizdat Creative), publishing between 20-30 books altogether each year. An active member of several publishing and arts organizations, Caleb is also a social entrepreneur, finding ways to serve the greater community and disadvantaged youth through strategic partnerships with organizations such as Colorado Business Committee for the Arts and Youth on Record. He has also recently published his first graphic novel, The Battle Begins, with David C. Cook Publishing, illustrated by Eisner-award winning artist Sergio Cariello. The sequel, The Seeds of Struggle, will appear in fall 2015 and he is under contract for two more. Caleb is a native Coloradan based in Golden, where he lives with his wife Angela, four children, and three chickens.

Marilyn L. Taylor, former Poet Laureate of Wisconsin (2009 and 2010), is the author of six poetry collections. Her award-winning poems and essays have ap­peared in many anthologies and journals, including Poetry, American Scholar, Measure, and Able Muse. She taught poetry and poetics at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and her column on poetic craft appeared for five years in The Writer magazine. She is a member of the Advisory Board of the Graduate Program in Creative Writing at Western.

Frederick Turner is Founders Professor of Arts and Humanities at the University of Texas at Dallas. He has held academic positions at the University of California at Santa Barbara, Kenyon College (where he was editor of The Kenyon Review), and the University of Exeter in England. Among his many books are Natural Classicism: Essays on Literature and Science, Shakespeare and the Nature of Time, Paradise (poetry) and Genesis: An Epic Poem.

Wendy Videlock’s poems have appeared widely, most notably in Poetry, Hudson Review, Rattle, The New Criterion, Poetry Review (UK), and The New York Times. She is the author of the chapbook What’s That Supposed to Mean (Exot Books), and two full-length collections on Able Muse Press: Nevertheless (2011, a finalist for the 2012 Colorado Book Award in poetry) and The Dark Gnu (2013), the latter a book for “children of all ages.” Her newest book, the satirical Slingshots and Love Plums, is also on Able Muse Press. Wendy is a visual artist who often works in alcohol inks, and her work has been shown in several Colorado galleries. She lives with her husband in western Colorado.

Literary agent Terrie Wolf has traveled the world in search of good stories and great books. As a member of the international media, an award-winning journalist and promotions specialist, Terrie has learned what it takes to write well, get accepted and develop notoriety; not necessarily in that order! She is happiest when given the opportunity to pitch softly, edit gently and market fiercely. A partner at AKA Literary agency, Terrie mastered her skills in the literary world from inside the offices of several large companies, which include CBS, NBC, and Hobson's Press. She studied English Literature at Cambridge University, Creative Writing at NYU and Journalism at CU-Denver. Her specialties include all genres of Romance, Graphic Novel, Western, Young Adult, Children's (all levels) including young adult, Women's, Multi-Cultural, Empowerment (Things of Faith), and Inspirational. She also represents non-fiction: Cookbooks, Humor, Memoir, Religion, Music and Nature.

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