Program

At When Words Collide you will find presentations, discussions, readings, and signings by each year's festivals guests and additional attending experts in the literary arena: authors, editors, artists, poets, playwrights, and others involved in creating the written word. If you have ideas for topics you would like to see, please let us know at: info@whenwordscollide.org.

Last year's program is available here.

Program Space Layout

2015 Programming Space

Call For Presenters

If you would like to participate in this year's program, please have a look here.

Call For Panel Moderators

If you would like to moderate a discussion panel, please have a look here. Note that moderators may also opt to be participants on panels they moderate.

2015 Program In Development

Please have a look at our progress here. We update monthly. (Last updated: 2015-03-20) All items are considered tentative until the final schedule is released.

Confirmed Presenters / Panelists

David B. Coe

David B. Coe
David B. Coe/D.B. Jackson is the award winning author of more than eighteen novels and many short stories. As David B. Coe (www.DavidBCoe.com) he has written the Crawford award-winning LonTobyn Chronicle, the Winds of the Forelands quintet, the Blood of the Southlands trilogy, and the novelization of Ridley Scott’s ROBIN HOOD, and will soon release, SPELL BLIND, the first volume of the Case Files of Justis Fearsson. The second book, HIS FATHER’S EYES, will be out next summer. Writing as D.B. Jackson (www.dbjackson-author.com), he is the author of the Thieftaker Chronicles — THIEFTAKER, THIEVES' QUARRY, A PLUNDER OF SOULS, and DEAD MAN'S REACH, which is also due out in summer 2015. David is part of the Magical Words group blog (magicalwords.net), and co-author of How To Write Magical Words: A Writer’s Companion. His books have been translated into more than a dozen languages.

Susan Forest

Susan Forest
Three-time Prix Aurora Award finalist and winner of The Galaxy Project, juried by Robert Silverberg, David Drake and Barry Malzberg, Susan Forest is a writer of science fiction, fantasy and horror, and a fiction editor for Edge Press. You can find her stories in Analog, Asimov's, OnSpec, Blood and Water, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Tesseracts, AE Science Fiction Review, and The Urban Green Man, or in her collection, Immunity to Strange Tales (Five Rivers Press). www.speculative-fiction.ca.

Janet Gurtler

Janet Gurtler
A Rita Award Finalist and Crystal Kite Award Finalist, Janet Gurtler's young adult books have been chosen for the JUNIOR LIBRARY GUILD SELECTION and as BEST BOOKS FOR TEENS from the Canadian Children’s Book Center. Janet lives in Okotoks Alberta, Canada with her husband, son, and a chubby black Chihuahua named Bruce. www.janet-gurtler.com

Amber Hayward

Amber Hayward
Amber Hayward is the author of a trilogy of speculative fiction novels, the Children of the Panther series, released by Edge Press. Her short fiction and poetry have appeared in Canadian and international periodicals including Daily Science Fiction and On Spec. In 2011, she wrote a flash fiction piece each day for a year and posted them on her website, www.amberhayward.ca. Many of the stories were mysteries. Amber is presently working on the second novel of a mystery series. She is one of the owners of the Black Cat Guest Ranch near Jasper, Alberta and teaches writing workshops there and in the nearby community of Hinton.

Jessica Jackson

Jessica Jackson
Jessice is ARWA’s current president. She’s been a member for about three years. Jessica says, “ARWA helps me maintain focus and I get ideas and learn craft skills. I participate in the Writing challenge Groups which gives me feedback on my current projects."
Jessica has published three novellas, a collection for short stories, five novels over 100,000 words each and recently completed her third novel in the Look Behind You series for Ellora's Cave Publishing. www.jessicaleolajackson.com

Constantine Kaoukakis

Constantine Kaoukakis
Constantine’s interests include comic books (Marvel & DC), Sherlock Holmes, Star Trek, Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, Game of Thrones, Greek mythology, Doctor Who, British murder mysteries, British history, ancient history, and literature.
He has degrees in education, English and Classics which have enabled him to teach Latin, ancient and modern Greek, ESL, English literature, ancient Greek and Roman literature at the high school, college and university levels: Concordia University (Montreal), Queen’s University and other minor colleges.
Not only is he a former member of the Bimetallic Question-the Sherlock Holmes Society of Montreal, but he also founded The Wisteria Lodgers-the Sherlock Holmes Society of Edmonton. Furthermore, he is an editor for OnSpec magazine. Constantine also likes to dabble in mystery fiction.

Stacey Kondla

Stacey Kondla
Stacey Kondla is a life-long book nerd and averages reading 10 -15 books per month in her spare time. She was fortunate to have spent 10 years working for Scholastic Book Fairs to promote the love of reading in children and young adults. Currently, Stacey manages the IndigoKids department at a local Chapters store and is an active member of When Words Collide's organizing committee. Stacey also is a member of Bookcrossing and promotes the love of reading to the public at large by releasing books into the wild to find new readers.

Fonda Lee

Fonda Lee
Fonda Lee is a science fiction and fantasy author. Her debut novel, Zeroboxer, a 2015 Junior Library Guild selection, is a high-action young adult sci-fi about a young man battling to make it to the top in the world of zero gravity prizefighting amid brewing interplanetary conflict between Earth and Mars. Fonda is a recovering corporate strategist, an avid martial artist, a fan of smart action movies, and an Eggs Benedict enthusiast. Born and raised in Calgary, she now lives in Portland, Oregon. You can find Fonda at www.fondalee.com> and on Twitter @fondajlee.

Shirlee Smith Matheson

Shirlee Smith Matheson
Research, writing, and reading tours take Shirlee Smith Matheson across North America to schools, libraries and museums, and into the homes and hangars of aviation heroes whose stories are found in her 20 published books. Her collection of aviation stories related in Flying the Frontiers Vols. I, II, and III, and Amazing Flights & Flyers, recall true tales of adventure and misadventure. Maverick in the Sky brings to life the amazing story of Calgary’s WWI flying ace, Freddie McCall. A Royal Balance - the Life and times of Hal Wyatt, was released in December 2013. Her latest nonfiction book, Lost: Unsolved Mysteries of Canadian Aviation, will appeal to readers of all ages. Historical young adult novels include Flying Ghosts and The Gambler’s Daughter, set in Canada’s North. Fastback Beach is a contemporary “hi-lo” novel that catapults readers into the world of hot-rod cars. Jailbird Kid features a dramatic story of a girl turning 15 the day her dad is being released from prison, and former award-winning young adult novels, Prairie Pictures and City Pictures, have received dynamic updates for new releases in 2014/2015. Again, adventure, misadventure and risk are featured, backed by the necessary research work required for all stories to ring true. Shirlee currently resides with her family in Calgary, where she was employed for a number of years at the Aero Space Museum. She welcomes inquiries regarding her literary work. http://ssmatheson.ca

Randy McCharles

Randy McCharles
Randy McCharles is active in Calgary, Alberta's writing community with a focus on speculative fiction, usually of the wickedly humorous variety, with short stories and novellas available from Edge SF&F Publishing, House of Anansi, and Reality Skimming Press. He is the recipient of several Aurora Awards (Canada's most prestigious award for speculative fiction) and is short-listed in three categories for the upcoming 2014 Awards. In 2013, his short story Ghost-B-Gone Incorporated won the House of Anansi 7-day Ghost Story Contest. Randy's first Tyche Books publication, Much Ado About Macbeth, will be available in August 2015. www.RandyMcCharles.com.

Jodi McIsaac

Jodi McIsaac
Jodi McIsaac is the author of the bestselling fantasy series The Thin Veil and the forthcoming thriller, A CURE FOR MADNESS (January 2016). She is currently writing a historical series spanning several centuries of Irish history. Jodi grew up on the East Coast but now lives in Calgary with her husband, cat, and two feisty daughters. www.jodimcisaac.com

Mahrie G Reid

Mahrie G Reid
Mahrie G. Reid grew up in small eastern towns. She read copiously and wrote her first novel at age eight. A minister’s daughter in the the fifties, she was encouraged to be a nurse, teacher or office worker so she’d have something to ‘fall back on’ if anything happened to her husband. She tried all three professions before becoming a Real Estate Appraiser, a newsletter editor, an adult educator, an office organization consultant, a library manager and a marriage commissioner, among other things. At all times she continued to write, read and study and teach novel writing skills.
Her published works include short stories, poems, trade articles,technical and research papers and newspaper features. Her mystery novels, Sheldon Harris Came Home Dead and Katya Binks Came Home from Away were published in 2014.

Gary Renshaw

G.W. Renshaw
G.W. Renshaw's short story Vacation appears in On Spec's Spring 2013 issue as well as the Starklight 3 anthology. His short story Hic Sunt Dracones and collection Odd Thoughts are available online. The Stable Vices Affair, first of The Chandler Affairs series, is out in paperback and e-book. The second book, The Prince and the Puppet Affair, will be out in April 2015. http://gwrenshaw.ca/

Simon Rose

Simon Rose
Simon Rose is the author of science fiction and fantasy novels for middle grade and YA readers. His novels include The Alchemist’s Portrait, The Sorcerer’s Letterbox, The Clone Conspiracy, The Emerald Curse, The Heretic’s Tomb, The Doomsday Mask, The Time Camera, The Sphere of Septimus, and Flashback. He is also the author of The Children’s Writer’s Guide, a contributing author to The Complete Guide to Writing Science Fiction Volume One, and has written many non-fiction books for younger readers with Weigl Educational Publishers and Capstone. Simon is an instructor for adults with the University of Calgary and Mount Royal University and offers presentations, workshops, and author in residence programs for schools. He also offers services for writers of all ages, including editing, coaching, online workshops and more, full details of which can be found at www.simon-rose.com

Garry Ryan

Garry Ryan
Since 2004 Garry Ryan has published nine novels with NeWest Press. The second, The Lucky Elephant Restaurant, won a 2007 Lambda Literary Award. In 2009, Ryan was awarded Calgary’s Freedom of Expression Award. www.garryryan.ca.

Robert J. Sawyer

Robert J. Sawyer
Robert J. Sawyer is the author of Hugo Award-winner Hominids, Nebula Award-winner The Terminal Experiment, and John W. Campbell Memorial Award-winner Mindscan, plus Starplex, Frameshift, Factoring Humanity, Calculating God, Humans, Rollback, and Wake, all of which were Hugo finalists. Other awards: 2014 Skylark Award; China's Galaxy Award for "Most Popular Foreign SF Writer;" three Japanese Seiun Awards; thirteen Canadian Aurora Awards (plus Lifetime Acheivement Aurora); as well as Analog's Analytical Laboratory Award, Science Fiction Chronicle's Reader Award, and the Crime Writers of Canada's Arthur Ellis Award, all for best short-story of the year. The ABC TV series FlashForward was based on his novel of the same name. Website: sfwriter.com.

Tony Stark

Anthony Stark
Anthony Stark is publisher and CEO of StarkLight Press. An EMR by trade, Tony uses his spare time to expand the Galactic Armed Forces science fiction universe through novels, short stories and artwork.
Though he focuses mainly on science fiction, Tony also writes period mystery and modern suspense stories that incorporate the supernatural into the framework of the tales. www.starklightpress.com

Virginia Stark

Virginia Carraway Stark
Virginia started her writing career with three successful screenplays and went on to write speculative fiction as well as plays and various blogs. She has written for several anthologies and three novels as well. Her novel, Dalton's Daughter is available now through Amazon and Starklight Press. Detachment's Daughter and Carnival Fun are coming later this year. www.starklightpress.com

Sandra Wickham

Sandra Wickham
Sandra Wickham lives in Vancouver, Canada with her husband and two cats. Her friends call her a needle crafting aficionado, health guru and ninja-in-training. Sandra’s short stories have appeared in Evolve, Vampires of the New Undead, Evolve, Vampires of the Future Undead, Chronicles of the Order, Crossed Genres magazine, LocoThology: Tales of Fantasy & Science Fiction, The Urban Green Man and Luna Station Quarterly. She blogs about writing with the Inkpunks, writes a column for Luna Station Quarterly, is the Fitness Nerd columnist for the Functional Nerds and slush reads for Lightspeed Magazine.
http://www.sandrawickham.com
http://www.sandrawickhamfitness.com

Edward Willett

Edward Willett
Edward Willett is a writer and editor from Regina, the author of more than 50 books of fiction and nonfiction for readers of all ages, both under his own name and under the pseudonyms E.C. Blake and Lee Arthur Chane. As E.C. Blake, he’s the author of YA/adult crossover trilogy The Masks of Aygrima for DAW books, the third book of which, FACES, is out in July 2015. Under his own name, he’s three books into the five-book YA modern fantasy series The Shards of Excalibur for Coteau Books. The third book, THE LAKE IN THE CLOUDS, is out in May, 2015, and the fourth book, THE CAVERN BENEATH THE SEA, will come out this fall, with the final book to follow in 2016. This year will also see the release of a new YA fantasy novel from Rebelight Publishing and FALCON’S EGG, an adult science fiction novel, from Bundoran Press, a sequel to 2013’s RIGHT TO KNOW. Ed’s next novel for DAW Books will be a science fiction novel, THE CITYBORN. On the non-fiction side, Ed has written everything from GENETICS DEMYSTIFIED (McGraw Hill) to biographies of J.R.R. Tolkien and Orson Scott Card. Ed also works as an editor, recently editing two issues of Saskatchewan's venerable literary magazine GRAIN and the latest edition of SPRING, a magazine highlighting new authors, both published by the Saskatchewan Writers Guild. Ed’s work has won a number of awards over the years, including the Aurora Award for best Canadian science fiction novel for MARSEGURO (DAW Books) in 2009 and a Saskatchewan Book Award for SPIRIT SINGER in 2003. In addition to being a writer and editor, Ed is a professional actor and singer who has appeared in numerous plays, musicals and operas around Saskatchewan.

S G Wong

S G Wong
SG Wong lives in Edmonton, Alberta, with her family and a whole lot of LEGO. She writes the Lola Starke novels and assorted Crescent City short stories in a lovely blue office where she can often be found staring out the window in between frenzied bouts of typing. Connect with her via Twitter (@S_G_Wong); Facebook; goodreads; and at www.sgwong.com.