VANITHA SANKARAN holds a PhD in Biomedical Engineering and an MFA in Creative Writing and is both a researcher and storyteller at heart. From her childhood days on, she has been lucky to travel the world, gaining diverse perspectives that continue to fuel her imagination. In addition to her 20-year career in medical communications, she has written Watermark: A Novel of the Middle Ages (Harper Collins) and numerous short stories and essays that have appeared online, in print, and on NPR.
She is a co-founding editor of the literary journal flashquake and has served as Conference Chair for the Historical Novel Society of North America for three terms. She is currently serving as the conference’s Program Chair and writes monthly feature articles for Pacifica Magazine and On the Coast Magazine. She also teaches workshops in non-Western story structure and scientific storytelling.
JORDAN ROSENFELD is author of the novels Women in Red and Forged in Grace and six books on the craft of writing: How to Write a Page-Turner, the bestselling Make a Scene, Writing the Intimate Character, A Writer's Guide to Persistence, Writing Deep Scenes and Write Free. Her freelance articles and essays have been published in hundreds of publications, including The Atlantic, The New York Times, Scientific American, Writer's Digest Magazine, The Washington Post and many more. She is also a freelance editor and journalist.
Poet Laureate Emeritus of Sacramento, Indigo Moor’s fourth book of poetry Everybody’s Jonesin’ for Something, took second place in the University of Nebraska Press’ Backwater Prize and will be published spring 2021. His second book, Through the Stonecutter’s Window, won Northwestern University Press’s Cave Canem prize. His first and third books, Tap-Root and In the Room of Thirsts & Hungers, were both part of Main Street Rag’s Editor’s Select Poetry Series.
In addition to poetry, Indigo has produced award-winning plays, short fiction, and essays. His stage-turned-screenplay Live! at the Excelsior was optioned as a full-length film. He is an established presenter and instructor at Gold Rush Writers Conference, a former teacher at the Stonecoast MFA Program, and a Cave Canem fellow. Indigo sits on the advisory board for both the Modesto Stanislaus Poetry Center and the Sacramento Poetry Center. A 10-year veteran of the US Navy and a twice-decorated Gulf War Veteran, Indigo divides his time between writing, teaching, and Integrated Circuit Layout Engineering for computer companies.
SANDS HALL is the author of the memoir Reclaiming My Decade Lost in Scientology (Counterpoint), a finalist for the Northern California Book Awards and a Publishers Weekly Best Book in Religion and Spirituality. Other works include the novel Catching Heaven (Ballantine), which was a Random House Reader’s Circle selection, and a volume of essays and exercises, Tools of the Writer’s Craft. Her stories and essays have been published in such places as Iowa Review, New England Review, and Los Angeles Review of Books, and her produced plays include an adaptation of Alcott’s Little Women and the comic-drama Fair Use, which explores the “was it plagiarism?” controversy surrounding Stegner’s Angle of Repose. Sands teaches annually for the Iowa Summer Writing Festival and for the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley. She is also a theater artist and a singer/songwriter, and performs widely. Sands lives in Nevada City, California.