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Castle Rock Writers present conference for Colorado authors

Church is venue for two days of talks, work, pitches

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For the 10th year the Castle Rock Writers group is offering a writers conference for Colorado writers, with the 2017 title: “Creativity in Progress: Start or Polish Your Manuscript.” The dates are Oct. 20-21 and the location will be the meeting rooms at New Hope Presbyterian Church in Castle Rock.

From 7 to 8:30 p.m. Oct. 20, a panel of three from the Denver writing organization AuthorU will talk about “Getting Smart on Publishing.” Panelists are: Jeanette Seibly, Susie Scott and Lynn Hellerstein. ($15 at the door.)

On Oct. 21, the kickoff talk, from 8:30 to 9 a.m., will be by novelist Laurie Marr Wasmund of Parker, who has worked previously with the Castle Rock Writers and taught writing at Arapahoe Community College for a number of years.

She said she will talk about “why we want to become writers, how we continue to grow and become writers.” (And she will critique submissions later, as will Linda Berry.)

Wasmund, who grew up in Castle Rock on the family ranch, said she is taking some time off from teaching to work on her “White Winter Trilogy,” which has a first volume completed and published: “To Do Justice.” She says her trilogy contains a good bit of historic material about the United States and France that “I didn’t learn in school.”

She has also published books about the women’s movement and the Ludlow Massacre.

Returning workshop leaders who follow her include: Mary Taylor Young, Anne Randolph, Stant Litore, Todd Mitchell, Joyce Lohse and Trai Cartwright. New leaders include Mary Peace Finley, Lindsey Lewis Smithson, Laurel Becker, Alejandro Lucero and Anna-Maria Crum.

Participants will break into four groups and do some writing, as well as listening to the experts — starting at 8:30 a.m.

The tracks will be: Middle Grade/YA (coordinator: Denice Loritsh); Poetry Track (coordinator: Susan Rocco-McKeel); Fiction Track (coordinator: Alice Aldridge-Dennis) and Non-Fiction Track (coordinator: Kevin Corbley).

In the Sedalia and Louviers rooms, writers will find critiques by Laurie Marr Wasmund and Linda Berry for writers who signed up by Oct. 5. And connections with agents Shannon Hassan (Marsal Lyon Literary Agency); Becky LeJeune (Bond Literary Agency); and Anne Bomke (via Skype) will be offered.

Authors will have displays on book tables throughout the day in the Gathering Room, where lunch will be served, the silent auction will proceed and early-bird coffee, tea and snacks will be available.

Lunchtime entertainment will include a one-act play, networking and book signings — as well as last bids on the ongoing silent auction.

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