Sierra Writers Conference

Sierra Writers Conference is an annual event providing
inspiration and craft progression activities for area writers
and Sierra College students through lectures, panels, critique groups,
Q & A, workshops and networking opportunities.
The first sierra Writers Conference was held in January 2016.

Sierra Writers Conference 2020







Novelists. Poets. Essayists. Non-fiction writers.

Memoirists. Travel writers. Short story writers.
Beginners. Award-winners. Dreamers. Best sellers.
Writers all … join us for a day of learning, sharing, growing and being inspired to craft your words into the stories, articles and books that only you can write. (Plus, get the information you need to market yourself and your work.) Also ... an optional afternoon Critique Fest where you get feedback on your work ... and learn how to give and receive helpful critiques.
What: 2nd Annual Sierra Writers’ Conference
When: January 21, 2017 – Full-day conference
January 20, 2017 – Afternoon Critique Fest (optional)
Where: Sierra College, Grass Valley Campus
Why: Because the world needs your words and your stories … and it will be FUN!!!
Mark your calendar now … registration will open November 1, 2016 … click below to find out more and register.

Click here for more information about the amazingly talented and generous cast of instructors who will be at the conference to mentor your talent … and your ability to market your talent.
Click the orange button below to purchase tickets, lunch, etc.
Hint, when you get to Eventbrite, look for a green button - "Tickets."




"Albert Bierstadt [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons."
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Saturday, January 23, 2016 from 8:30 AM to 1:30 PM (PST)
Sierra College
250 Sierra College Drive
Building N-12
Grass Valley, CA 95945

On January 23rd, 2016, Sierra Writers in association with Sierra College will host a half-day writers conference at the Grass Valley campus. The schedule of events includes a meet and greet at 8:30 in the morning, followed by the keynote address, two rounds of breakout sessions, and a parting discussion on publishing. Several notable, local writers will facilitate the events.
Schedule of Events  -  Scroll Down
Speaker Bios  -  Scroll Down

“Getting to the Point”

Sierra Writers’ Conference, January 23, 2016

8:30 am to 1:30 pm.

Come join us for a half-day of learning and conversation focused on improving your writing.

Schedule: 1/23/2016

8:30-9:10 - Meet and Greet/Registration
9:15-10:15 - Keynote Louis B. Jones
10:25-11:15 - Breakout - Round One (4 choices)
11:15-11:35 - Snack and Chat
11:40-12:30 - Breakout - Round Two ( 4 choices)
12:40-1:30 - Publishing Panel and closing


Janet Ann Collins (Inspirational) focuses on inspiration and children’s books. She is the author of five books for children and used to write feature articles for a newspaper in the San Francisco Bay Area, she also used to write a nostalgia column for the Antique Auction Explorer, and her work has appeared in many other periodicals, including The Union. Some of her published books and articles are religious and some are not. She is a retired teacher who lives in the Sierra foothills of Northern California.

Carolyn Crane (Script Writing) is a playwright, essayist, and editor, as well as founder of Lightcap Farm and Publishing Company. She has taught English at Sierra College since 1995.

Kim Culbertson (Young Adult Novels) is the award-winning author of the young adult novels Songs for a Teenage Nomad (Sourcebooks 2010), Instructions for a Broken Heart(Sourcebooks 2011), Catch a Falling Star (Scholastic 2014) and The Possibility of Now (Scholastic 2016). Much of her inspiration for her novels comes from the work she's done as a high school teacher for the last eighteen years. Right now, she's lucky to be a part of the wonderful English department at Forest Charter School. Kim is currently at work on her fifth YA novel (Scholastic 2017) and lives in Nevada City with her husband and daughter.

Larry Gold (Fiction) is the author of fourteen novels and one non-fiction book. He retired from medical practice at Alta Bates Hospital in Berkeley where he was chief of medicine to fulfill a lifelong dream of long distance cruising on a sailboat. Sailing and medicine form central themes in his fiction.

Wendy Hornsby (Mysteries) is an Edgar Award winning author of eleven mysteries, nine of them featuring Maggie MacGowen, as well as many short stories.  A retired History professor, Wendy lives in Penn Valley.  Her most recent book is THE COLOR OF LIGHT (Perseverance Press, 2014).

Rachel Howard (Memoir) is the author of The Lost Night, a memoir about her father’s unsolved murder, which the New York Times described as "enthralling."  Her short stories, personal essays, and criticism have appeared in popular magazines and newspapers across the country.  She received an MFA from Warren Wilson College, and returned there to serve first as Joan Beebe Teaching Fellow and then Interim Director of Undergraduate Creative Writing.  A longtime resident of the San Francisco Writers’ Grotto, she recently moved to Nevada City, where she is finishing a novel and working on a memoir about singing.  Her website is

Louis B. Jones (Keynote) is the author of four novels as well as screenplays – originals and adaptations of his own work – for studios and for independents. He is the Co-Director for the Squaw Valley Community of Writers' Fiction Program and his books have been named as New York Times Notable Books of their respective years. He is also an NEA fellow and a fellow of the MacDowell Colony in New Hampshire.

Iven Lourie (Publishers Panel) will moderate a panel focused on publishing your work. He worked as Poetry Editor at Chicago Review in the 1960s, and he has pursued editing, writing, and performance art since. His poetry has been published in numerous journals and little magazines, as well as two chapbooks, one full-length collection with artist's drawings, and one anthology of six California writers.  He works as Editor for Gateways Books and Artemis Books, teaches composition and literature at Sierra Community College, and leads the CafĂ© Writers critique group.

Chris Olander (Poetry) has taught poetry through California Poets in the Schools since 1984, in elementary and high schools as well as colleges. He blends performance and literary techniques to create what he calls action art poetry drawn from the bard tradition.  He was named the California State Poetry Coach champion in 2007.

Joyce Wycoff (Non-fiction) is the author of five published books in the field of creativity and innovation, one self-published memoir, and a new young adult, fantasy novella. Two of her non-fiction books have achieved “classic bestseller” status and she loves igniting creative thought and writing.

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