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· Keynote Speakers ·

Laura DiSilverio

Laura DiSilverio is the national bestselling and award-winning author of 21 mystery, suspense and young adult sci-fi novels. Her series include the Swift Investigations PI series (Minotaur), Ballroom Dance Mysteries (writing as Ella Barrick), Southern Beauty Shop Mysteries (writing as Lila Dare), Mall Cop Mysteries and Book Club Mysteries (Berkley Prime Crime). Library Journal named her book, Close Call, one of the Top Five mysteries of 2016, and The Reckoning Stones (2015) won the Colorado Book Award for Mystery in 2016. The Incubation Trilogy, her young adult dystopian novels, are Amazon bestsellers. A Past President of Sisters in Crime, she speaks and teaches widely on writing craft, the publishing life, and intelligence analysis. She lives in Colorado with her husband, goldendoodle puppy, and pandemic-induced boomerang daughter.

Mary Robinette Kowal

Mary Robinette Kowal is the author of the Lady Astronaut series and historical fantasy novels: The Glamourist Histories series and Ghost Talkers. She’s the President of SFWA, a member of the award-winning podcast Writing Excuses and has received the Astounding Award for Best New Writer, four Hugo awards, the RT Reviews award for Best Fantasy Novel, the Nebula, and Locus awards. Stories have appeared in Strange Horizons, Asimov’s, several Year’s Best anthologies and her collections Word Puppets and Scenting the Dark and Other Stories.

Her novel Calculating Stars is one of only eighteen novels to win the Hugo, Nebula and Locus awards in a single year.

As a professional puppeteer and voice actor (SAG/AFTRA), Mary Robinette has performed for LazyTown (CBS), the Center for Puppetry Arts, Jim Henson Pictures, and founded Other Hand Productions. Her designs have garnered two UNIMA-USA Citations of Excellence, the highest award an American puppeteer can achieve. She records fiction for authors such as Seanan McGuire, Cory Doctorow and John Scalzi.

Mary Robinette lives in Nashville with her husband Rob and over a dozen manual typewriters. Visit

Reavis Wortham

 Two time Spur Award winning author Reavis Z. Wortham pens the Texas Red River historical mystery series, and the high-octane Sonny Hawke contemporary western thrillers. The Red River novels are set in rural Northeast Texas in the 1960s. Kirkus Reviews listed his first novel in a Starred Review, The Rock Hole, as one of the “Top 12 Mysteries of 2011.” 

 Burrows, Wortham’s outstanding sequel to The Rock Hole combines the gonzo sensibility of Joe R. Lansdale and the elegiac mood of To Kill a Mockingbird to strike just the right balance between childhood innocence and adult horror.”
Publishers Weekly (starred review)

His series from Kensington Publishing features Texas Ranger Sonny Hawke and debuted in 2018. Hawke’s War, the second in the Sonny Hawke series won the Spur Award from the Western Writers Association of America in 2019. He garnered a second Spur from the WWA for Hawke’s Target in 2020.

“The cinematic characters have substance and a pulse. They walk off the page and talk Texas.”
The Dallas Morning News

Wortham retired from a 35-year career in public education, the last four as the Director of Communications for the Garland Independent School District. During that time, he also moonlighted as a landscape, wildlife, portrait and wedding photographer. An avid outdoorsman, you can find him hiking, fishing, canoeing, and hunting.

A frequent speaker at literary events across the country. Reavis also teaches seminars on mystery and thriller writing techniques at a wide variety of venues, from local libraries to writing conventions, to the Pat Conroy Literary Center in Beaufort, SC. He frequently speaks to smaller groups about the writing pitfalls and hazards he has survived. His most popular talk is entitled, My Long Road to Publication, and Other Great Disasters.

He has been a newspaper columnist and magazine writer since 1988, penning over 2,000 columns and articles in that time, and has been the Humor Editor for Texas Fish and Game Magazine for the past 23 years. He and his wife, Shana, live in Northeast Texas. All his works are available at your favorite online bookstore or outlet, in all formats. Check out his website at