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

2014 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.

2014 Program In Development

Please have a look at our progress here. We update monthly. (Last updated: 2014-04-15) All items are considered tentative until the final schedule is released.

Confirmed Presenters / Panelists

Angela Ackerman

Angela Ackerman
Angela Ackerman is a writing coach and co-author of the #1 bestselling resource, The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer's Guide to Character Expression as well as the bestselling pair, The Positive Trait Thesaurus: A Writer's Guide to Character Attributes and The Negative Trait Thesaurus: A Writer's Guide to Character Flaws. You can find her at Writers Helping Writers, a hub for all things description.

Samantha Baldwin

Samantha Baldwin
Samantha Baldwin is the founder of The Writer's Midwife where she runs inspiration-based writing workshops and offers one on one writing coaching. She graduated from Athabasca University at Mount Royal University with an English degree in 2012 and has her poetry published in Freefall Magazine and Blue Skies Poetry online.

Ron Bender

Ron Bender
Ron Bender has worked as a consultant for the Canadian and Provincial governments and the private sector, as an international business consultant, business process trouble-shooter, and marketing specialist. Currently, he is spearheading the development of business process plans for one of Calgary's several MAKER groups. Ron has thirty-seven years of RPG experience. He spent the majority of that time running and designing games using the customizable GURPS system while focusing on gaming as an interactive storytelling forum. He planned, coordinated, and ran a character driven RPG campaign for seven consecutive years. Using his RPG storytelling experience as a framework, he has recently begun writing novels and just completed the first book in a historical fantasy series.

Shawn L. Bird

Shawn L. Bird
Shawn L. Bird is a high school English teacher, Young Adult author, and poet in the beautiful Shuswap region of BC. She maintains an active daily blog of poetry and observations at www.shawnbird.com. She is represented by the Transatlantic Agency.

Melodie Campbell

Melodie Campbell
Billed as Canada's Queen of Comedy by the Toronto Sun (Jan. 5, 2014) Melodie Campbell achieved a personal best when Library Digest compared her to Janet Evanovich.
Melodie got her start writing stand-up. In 1999, she opened the Canadian Humour Conference. Her crime and fantasy novels have been described by industry reviewers as hilarious. Winner of nine awards, Melodie is a two time finalist for both the Derringer and Arthur Ellis awards for crime writing. She has over 200 publications, 100 comedy credits, 40 short stories, and seven novels, including the Rowena Through the Wall fantasy series, and The Goddaughter mob caper series.

Marty Chan

Marty Chan
Marty writes plays for adults and books for kids. A vagabond of writing genres, Marty has written for theatre, television, radio, and kids publishing. Best known for his play, Mom, Dad, I'm Living with a White Girl, Marty has over 25 plays that have been produced around the world. He was nominated for a Gemini for his television pilot, The Orange Seed Myth, and he entertained CBC Radio listeners for six years with his Dim Sum Diaries commentaries. Today, kids enjoy his novels that include The Mystery of the Frozen Brains and Barnabas Bigfoot: A Close Shave. His latest novel, The Ehrich Weisz Chronicles: Demon Gate, is a steampunk fantasy for young adults. In 2011, Marty served as the Edmonton Public Library's writer-in-residence. For more information, go to www.martychan.com.

Cheryl Cottreau

Cheryl Cottreau
Cheryl Cottreau is a “writer and a poet and a mystic and a muse”. She published her first work Whisper of a Vision in May 2013 and is working on two other books at this time. She has been journaling since she first had her first “little red book” when she was ten. She feels that journalling has been one of her greatest tools in her path of self-discovery. She blogs regularly on her website www.cherylcottreau.com.

Ryah Deines

Ryah Deines
Ryah Deines works for Tyche Books where she has complete control over Tyche’s audio book line, including hiring the narrators, editing the raw audio, and getting the product ready for sale either on CD or through Audible.com. Ryah thinks the best thing in life is to be curled up on a couch with a good book to read, and a purring kitty on her lap. While this Aurora Award nominee gets many opportunities to do just that, it is just never enough to satisfy her voracious reading appetite.

Craig DiLouie

Craig DiLouie
Craig DiLouie is the author of seven novels published by small and big presses, with his latest horror novel, SUFFER THE CHILDREN, published by Simon & Schuster. He blogs about horror film and fiction at CraigDiLouie.com.

Sandra Fitzpatrick

Sandra Fitzpatrick
Sandra Fitzpatrick has been helping artists, writers, actors and other creative people with their taxes since 2006. Many have not known the deductions available as self-employed people and she does several seminars each year to bring this information and more on the basics of financial planning to them. She has been writing fantasy and science fiction for over ten years and is a long time member of IFWA.

Susan Forest

Susan Forest
Two-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.

Ron Friedman

Ron S. Friedman
RON S. FRIEDMAN’s short stories appeared in Daily Science Fiction, Not Just Rockets And Robots, Age Of Certainty, sold to Galaxy’s Edge and received Honourable Mentions in Writers of the Future Contest (2011 and 2013).
Ron was winner of the 2013 Aurora Awards – Fan Related category, and appeared as a panelist at When Words Collide, Con-version and Calgary Comic Expo.
Ron is on the board of directors of the Canadian Science-Fiction and Fantasy Association and When Words Collide festival, and he is an active IFWA member.

Kimberly
Gould

Kimberly Gould
Kimberly Gould hates being called Kimmy, but her mother called her Kimmydonn and that was okay. She lives in Edmonton with her husband and daughter. When she isn't writing about the post-apocalyptic world, she is doing her best to prevent an apocalypse as an environmental consultant. She is the author of the Cargon series as well as Thickness of Blood and Never Say Die: A Zombie Time Loop Story. You can find her anywhere online as Kimmydonn, including her website, Kimmydonn.com.

Ron Hore

Ron Hore
Ron Hore can be found sailing on Lake Winnipeg when not writing novels or critiquing for an on-line magazine. A member of several writing groups, with published short stories, and two medieval-style fantasy novels, "The Dark Lady" and "The Queen’s Pawn" in print and ebook format, plus six novellas: "The Housetrap Chronicles" a fantasy detective series. Two sequels in the Dark Lady series arrive in 2014. These are available through Champagne/BURST Books. Supervised by his wife and a large, demanding cat, his writings fall under fantasy, with wanderings into science fiction and horror.
Updates on Ron and writing: www.ronaldhore.com and www.facebook.com/RonaldJHore.

Axel Howerton

Axel Howerton
Axel Howerton is the author of the darkly funny hardboiled detective novel Hot Sinatra, and the mini-anthology Living Dead at Zigfreidt & Roy. Axel is a former entertainment journalist, and the co-creator of the annual Coffin Hop horror author/artist event. His short fiction has recently appeared in various magazines and anthologies, including Fires on the Plain, Big Pulp, Lebowski 101, A Career Guide To Your Job In Hell and the best-selling holiday collection Let It Snow: Season's Readings For A Super-Cool Yule. He is the editor of the books Coffin Hop: Death by Drive-In and the upcoming weird western anthology The Horse Always Gets It First, which will debut at When Words Collide 2014. Website: www.axelhowerton.com.

Jessica L. Jackson

Jessica L. Jackson
Jessica L. Jackson, a proud member of the Alberta Romance Writers’ Association, has lived in Southern Alberta since 1997. She’s began writing romances in her twenties when her three children were young. Within the last year she has e-published two novellas with Ellora’s Cave in their Blush line and is under contract for a three-book series of paranormal/contemporary. The first of these, Come Closer has a release date of September 5th, 2013. Encouraged by one of the WWC 2012 sessions on self-publishing, Jessica has also self-published two time/historical novels through Amazon.com as e-books. Another book in the series will be released this summer. Her website is: jessicaleolajackson.com.

Sarah Kades

Sarah Kades
Sarah Kades loves travel, adventure, the great outdoors and writing romance novels. She has called the United States, Scotland and Canada home. She has a lingering fascination with helicopters from her days as an archaeologist, but it is great writing inspiration, so she’s not too worried. She loves writing stories that entertain and inspire people in the magic in all of us, the natural world, and the power of love. She has two titles out, Claiming Love and the short story Duke Out at the Diner. She is currently working on The Tanner Series, a five book series revolving around five siblings and one heck of a family history. When she is not writing or giving writing workshops, she is playing, usually outside, with her family or planning their next adventure. http://www.sarahkades.com

Halli Lilburn

Halli Lilburn
Born in Edmonton, AB, Halli Dee Lilburn teaches art journaling at local schools and through educational programs. She writes poetry, creative non-fiction and Young Adult fiction. She has work published in Canada's History, Canadian Stories, Poetry quarterly and other literary journals. Her novel SHIFTERS is published through Imajin Books.
She now resides in southern Alberta with her husband and three children and works at the local library. She is a gardener, artist, photographer, seamstress, genealogist, and singer. She can pick up spiders, handle the sight of blood, subdue aggressive dogs, make a mean grilled cheese, and keep her sanity. Most of the time.
She can be found at: hallililburn.blogspot.com
http://www.facebook.com/hlilburn
http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/4878963twitter@hallilburn

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. In 2009 he received Canada's most prestigious award for speculative fiction, the Aurora Award, for the novella Ringing in the Changes in Okotoks, Alberta which appeared in Tesseracts 12 (Edge Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing) and was also reprinted in Year's Best Fantasy 9 (David Hartwell and Kathryn Kramer, ed). Additional short stories and novellas are available in various publications from Edge Press, including his two latest titles: The Puzzle Box and Urban Green Man. Randy's first full length novel, Capone's Chicago, will be available in 2014. www.RandyMcCharles.com.

Jodi McIsaac

Jodi McIsaac
Jodi McIsaac is the author of the bestselling Thin Veil contemporary fantasy series, as well as the short story A Cure for Madness, a sci-fi thriller. She grew up in New Brunswick, Canada. After stints as a short-track speed skater, a speechwriter, and fundraising and marketing executive in the nonprofit sector, she started a boutique copywriting agency and began writing novels in the wee hours of the morning. She currently lives with her husband and children in Calgary, where she is working on her next novel.

Joanne Morcom

Joanne Morcom
Joanne Morcom is a Calgary social worker and writer who has published two poetry collections and co-authored two poetry anthologies. Her poetry also appears in a variety of print and online publications. She's a founding member of The Magpie Haiku & Tanka Poets, and belongs to The Writers Guild of Alberta, The Independent Publishers Association of Canada, Haiku Canada and Tanka Canada. Visit her at www.joannemorcom.ca.

Sherry Peters

Sherry Peters
Hailing from Winnipeg, Sherry Peters is a writer and a certified Success Coach for writers specializing in the areas of goal setting and eliminating writer's block. Festival attendees may know Sherry best from her workshop Silencing Your Inner Saboteur. She is excited to be launching her debut novel, a YA Fantasy, Mabel the Lovelorn Dwarf. Sherry attended the Odyssey Writing Workshop and earned her M.A. in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University. For more information on Sherry, visit her website at www.dwarvenamazon.com.

Marie Powell

Marie Powell
Marie Powell (http://mepowell.com/) is a professional writer based in Regina, Saskatchewan. Scholastic Canada published her children’s book Dragonflies are Amazing and Red Line will publish her six-book beginning-reader series this fall. Her award-winning short stories and poems appear in such literary magazines as subTerrain, Room, and Transition. She holds a Master of Fine Arts (MFA) degree in Creative Writing from the University of British Columbia (UBC), among other degrees, and her articles appear in more than 70 markets across Canada and internationally. Her writing workshops are popular across Saskatchewan, and have led to a monthly freewriting club in Regina.

Mahrie G Reid

Mahrie G Reid
An avid reader and Nancy Drew fan, Mahrie wrote her first mystery book at age eight and the handwritten copy of Mystery on Tancook Island still exists. Pursuing an education, a husband and kids and a busy career overtook her writing for many years. Over the years she read copiously, studied writing craft and shared her learning in workshops, conferences and courses and always kept writing, publishing non-fiction, short stories and poetry as Mahrie Glab. She has now come full circle, returning to writing mystery novels, this time with a touch of romance. The first in the Caleb Cove Mysteries series is due for publication in 2014. Mahrie is a member of Alberta Romance Writers Association, Crime Writers of Canada and a graduate of Calgary's Citizen's Police Academy and Private Investigation 101.

Jodie Renner

Jodie Renner
Jodie Renner, a sought-after freelance editor specializing in thrillers and other fast-paced fiction, has published two craft-of-writing guides (both also available as eBooks) to date in her series, An Editor’s Guide to Writing Compelling Fiction: the multi-award-winning FIRE UP YOUR FICTION (formerly titled Style That Sizzles & Pacing for Power), and WRITING A KILLER THRILLER, which appeals to writers of any genre. For more info, please visit Jodie’s author website, her editor website, or her blogs (The Kill Zone, Crime Fiction Collective, and Resources for Writers), or find her on Facebook, Twitter, or Google+.

Gary Renshaw

Gary Renshaw
Gary Renshaw appeared in The Great Sperm Race as a stunt sperm and currently works at the medical school playing with the brains of students. His short story Vacation appears in On Spec's Spring 2013 issue. He's completed his third novel in a chick-lit urban fantasy series. Gary is a long-time member of the Imaginative Fiction Writers Association and has a — whimsical — sense of humour. He shares something wonderful with the actresses Daniela Ruah and Jane Seymour.

Garry Ryan

Garry Ryan
Since 2004 Garry Ryan has published eight 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.

Hayden Trenholm

Hayden Trenholm
Hayden Trenholm’s stories have appeared in On Spec, TransVersions, Neo-Opsis, Challenging Destiny, Talebones, and on CBC radio. In 2008, he won the Canadian Science Fiction Aurora Award, Like Water in the Desert. He won a second Aurora in 2011 for his short story, The Burden of Fire. His first SF novel, Defining Diana, (Bundoran Press 2008) and sequel, Steel Whispers, (2009) were nominated for Aurora Awards. Stealing Home, (2010) and received an Aurora and a Sunburst Award nomination. He won the 2013 Aurora Award for editing the anthology, Blood and Water. He is the managing editor of Bundoran Press. And recently edited the anthology: Strange Bedfellows.

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; The Urban Green Man; and Luna Station Quarterly. She blogs about writing with the Inkpunks, is the Fitness Nerd columnist for the Functional Nerds and slush reads for Lightspeed Magazine.
http://www.sandrawickham.com
http://www.sandrawickhamfitness.com

ZEDS Comic Communications

ZEDS Comic Communications
ZEDS Comic Communications is a communications company with a twist: their business is a joke! From ghostwriting to social media to stand-up comedy training, all of their projects are infused with humour. Zoey Duncan, Eva Pea, Derek Wilken and Steele Duncan combine their creative forces to bring the skills of comedy and communication to learners and clients who are ready to laugh more.