To help alleviate the negative effects of the shutdown, Kanab residents have greatly expanded the fourth annual Kanab Writer’s Conference, scheduled to be held Friday, October 25, and Saturday, October 26, at the Kanab Middle School.
Formerly known as the “Writers of the Purple Sage,” the conference keeps in touch with the original Zane Gray brand by including classes on Cowboy Poetry and the Western genre, but has expanded to cover many more facets of writing.
“The conference has emerged as one of Utah’s best values, and this year’s event is as good as it gets.” said Kelly Stowell, Executive Director for the Center for Business, Education and the Arts (CEBA) in Kanab. Stowell went on to say, “The event has direct benefits for everyone, ranging from aspiring writers to the local business community.. The event also builds on our local heritage and offers another value added experience for visitors to our area.”
Stowell is heading up the conference with the help of a steering committee chaired by Liz Adair and comprised of Colette Cox, Vickie Hooper, Tom Carter, Kayeleen Hamblin, Raven Chiong, and Joan Kirby (pictured in the attachment).
The Kanab Writers Conference aims to bridge the gap between readers and writers, so it will begin with a free community event on the evening of Friday, October 26, at the Kanab Middle School, located at 690 South Cowboy Way. A bookstore featuring books by conference presenters and local authors will open at 6:00 p.m., and offers a chance for local folks to meet the authors and browse the bookstore.
As part of this free community event, at 7:00 p.m. local authors will read from the Red Rock Review, followed by entertainment by Hal Cannon, noted folksinger and folklorist. The Saturday session of Kanab Writers Conference begins with registration at 8:00 a.m. The cost for attending the Saturday session is $40 and includes lunch catered by Houston’s restaurant.
The morning keynote session will convene at 8:30 a.m. featuring Janette Rallison. Ms. Rallison, a popular young adult writer, has thirteen titles to her name and sales of over a million books. After the keynote, there will be two breakout sessions, with strands in poetry, nonfiction, genre, craft basics, self-publishing and marketing, and general writing.
Lunch will allow time for networking and a chance to visit the bookstore. After lunch, a representative from the Utah Division of Arts and Museums will talk about available resources for writers. Immediately following the address will be one last breakout session, after which the bookstore will close and the conference will be adjourned until next year.
Workshop teachers include award-winning authors Tanya Parker Mills, Heidi Thomas, Rod Miller, Marsha Ward, Julie Wright, and Liz Adair. The nonfiction classes will be taught by Kari Pike, a freelance copywriter, Cecily Markland, editor of The Beehive, and Dr. Ron Shook, senior faculty member at Utah State University. Other presenters are blogger Bonnie Harris, middle-grade author Laurisa White Reyes, and Mercedes M. Yardley, nonfiction editor for Shock Totem Magazine.
Attendees of the Kanab Writer’s Conference will be able to receive 10 hours of teacher recertification training for public education in Arizona, Nevada, and Utah offered through the Southwest Applied Technology College. “This is a great opportunity for teachers in public education to be able to gain recertification training credits for attending the conference, while still being able to enjoy the natural wonders of southern Utah and northern Arizona,” remarked Colette Cox, Kane Campus Coordinator for the Southwest Applied Technology College.
You can see the entire schedule of classes by visiting the website at www.kanabwritersconference.com and clicking on the “schedule” tab at the top right hand side. Anyone desiring to register can do so by clicking on the “registration” tab.