The 31st year of


April 14, 2018

Conference Center, West Campus, LCC

Lansing MI


PDF downloads to print (for informational purposes only!)

Download 2017 session schedule here: 2017 Sessions

Download 2017 presenter bios here: 2017 Presenters

A look back at our Rally Speakers of 2017

Presented by the Skaaldic Society

Program Schedule and Registration coming later in January

2017 Keynoter Lori Nelson Spielman

“The (Elusive) Joy of Writing”


Lori Nelson Spielman Lori is the #1 international bestselling author of The Life List (Random House, 2013) and Sweet Forgiveness (Penguin Random House, 2015), novels which have been translated into over thirty-five languages. The Life List was optioned by Fox Studios and has sold more than a million copies worldwide. Lori, a speech-language pathologist, was a high school guidance counselor and a homebound teacher. She lives in Lansing with her husband and loves hiking, reading, traveling, and good food and wine.


Andrea King Collier A multimedia journalist, essayist, and author for over 25 years, Andrea specializes in foods, health and wellness, and health policy. Her work appears across print, online, and broadcast outlets, including Salon, NBCBLK, Washington Post, Ebony, National Geographic, and many others. She is the author of two books and teaches online courses for writers. She belongs to ASJA, NABJ, and AHCJ, where she is a Great Lakes Fellow.

J. Gabriel Gates The author of five novels, The Tracks Trilogy, Blood Zero Sky and The Sleepwalkers, Jacob also has had publications in several journals and anthologies, two of his screenplays have been optioned by Hollywood producers, and he has been working as a ghostwriter for several years. He received his MFA in Writing from Spalding University.

Beverly Jenkins The nation’s premier writer of African-American historical romance, Bev has over 35 published novels and many awards, including two Career Achievement Awards and a Pioneer Award from Romantic Times Magazine, and a Golden Pen Award from the Black Writer’s Guild. She grew up in the Motor City; in the 4th grade she was the editor of her elementary school newspaper. She also speaks NFL and gardening.

Landis Y. Lain Landis began her writing career in the first grade, went on to graduate from MSU, and then snagged a law degree because her mother told her, “Writers starve so get a real job.” Now a judge, and an avid romance and mystery reader, she writes fiction and nonfiction for varied ages. Daddy’s Baby is her debut YA novel. Google Landis Y. Lain

Barbara Arno Modrack A news producer for the Lansing State Journal, Barb’s short stories have appeared in Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine,, Alaska Quarterly Review, Seventeen and elsewhere. Google Barb Modrack

Steven Harper Piziks Author of 25 books, Steven was born with a name no one can spell or pronounce, so he writes under the name Steven Harper in science fiction, fantasy, mystery, and steampunk, mostly for Penguin Random House. When not at his keyboard, he plays the folk harp, fiddles with video games, and pretends he doesn’t talk to household cats.

Alice Speilburg A literary agent at Speilburg Literary Agency, Alice has worked in the publishing business since 2008. She is a member of Mystery Writers of America, Romance Writers of America, and the SCBWI, and is a board member of Louisville Literary Arts. She is currently building her client list and represents a wide range of fiction and nonfiction.

Julie Lawson Timmer The author of Five Days Left (Putnam, 2014), Untethered (Putnam, 2016) and Mrs. Saint and the Defectives (Lake Union, 2017), Julie grew up in Stratford, Ontario, Canada, and serves as legal counsel to an automotive supplier near Ann Arbor, where she lives with her husband and children. She is also a devotee of hot yoga and CrossFit.

Gijsbert and Robbyn Van Frankenhuyzen Illustrator and author Nick and Robbyn’s publisher told them it would only be one book, The Legend of Sleeping Bear. Twenty-five years and 35 books later they are still creating children’s books. They have also spent 25 years in wildlife rehabilitation on their 40-acre farm in Bath MI, where rescued animals have become stories in their Hazel Ridge series.

Jess Wells Winner of a San Francisco Art Commission Grant for Literature and four-time finalist for the national Lamda Literary Award, Jess is the author of nine volumes of work, including four books of short stories and two historical novels. Her work is published in dozens of anthologies and literary journals, including Millennium Writing and The Owen Wister Review.

Terry Wooten Terry has been called “an everyday Homer writing as a modern Bard for ordinary heroes.” He is an award-winning poet, creator of the Elders Project, and builder and host of the Stone Circle, the longest outdoor poetry venue in Michigan and the focus of an international documentary film, due in 2017. His collected works, Stone Circle Poems, won a 2016 Michigan Notable Book Award.

or 517-372-3385

Funded in part by Gibson’s Bookstore, Lansing Community College, and the

Michigan Humanities Council, an affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities