Presenters for the 2014 conference include:
M. T. Anderson has written stories for adults, picture books for children, adventure novels for young readers, and several books for older readers (both teens and adults). His satirical book Feed was a Finalist for the National Book Award and was the winner of the L.A. Times Book Prize. The first volume of his Octavian Nothing saga won the National Book Award and the Boston Globe / Horn Book Prize. Both the first and second volumes of that two-part series were Printz Honor Books. He has published stories for adults in literary journals like The Northwest Review, The Colorado Review, and Conjunctions.
Holly Black is the bestselling author of contemporary fantasy novels for teens and children. Holly collaborated with her long-time friend, Caldecott award winning artist, Tony DiTerlizzi, to create the bestselling Spiderwick Chronicles. She is the author of numerous award-winning middle-grade and YA novels including Tithe, Valiant, Ironside, The Curse Workers Trilogy, Doll Bones, and The Coldest Girl In Coldtown.
Jake Powning is a professional swordsmith, artist, and storyteller exploring the roots
of European mythology and the strange places where traditional culture and the land meet.
Charlie Bethel is an actor/writer based in Minneapolis and has also worked as a director, stage manager, producer, electrician, milliner, and properties and set dressing artist. He has performed at Cincinnati Playhouse, Trinity Rep, many Shakespeare Festivals across the US and has both performed and taught at the Esalen Institute, and for the Cherubs Program at Northwestern University. Outside the theater, Charlie has been a writer for Red Farm Films, a seamanship instructor, a cook, a gardener, a florist, and a surveyor of graveyards. A native Southerner, Charlie is a graduate of the North Carolina School of the Arts, the South Carolina Governor’s School, and he comes from a long line of talkers.
Charles Vess is an award-winning artist and illustrator who has worked with Marvel, DC, Darkhorse and Epic Comics. Winner of the World Fantasy Award for his work on Neil Gaiman's Sandman #19, other collaborations with Gaiman include Stardust and two best-selling children's books, Blueberry Girl and Instructions. His art is featured in a newly released book written by Charles de Lint, The Cats of Tanglewood Forest, (Little Brown, 2013), and Drawing Down the Moon: The Art of Charles Vess (Dark Horse Books, 2011).
Elizabeth-Jane Baldry is an acclaimed harpist, composer, screenwriter and director of The Chagford Filmmaking Group. Her compositions have been used by ITV, the BBC and by Irish, Japanese and Canadian film, radio and television. In 2006 she was the only British performer to be shortlisted for Best Classical Event Award in the combined Brighton Festivals, England's largest Arts Festival. She has performed in the US to sold-out audiences, and in Italy at the Pordenone Silent Film Festival, the largest of its kind in the world. Elizabeth-Jane's unique research into Victorian Fairy Harp Music has led to many quaint adventures - a CD with worldwide distribution; radio and TV broadcasts including a half-hour Radio 4 documentary; a West End stage show with actor Simon Callow for which she also wrote the songs; appearances at the Royal Academy of Art exhibition of Victorian fairy paintings and at Prince Charles' unveiling of the restored Elfin Oak Tree in Kensington Gardens; involvement in the major French exhibition Dragons, Elfes et Fées, and an appearance in the award-winning Canadian television documentary The Fairy Faith.
Ari Berk is an award-winning author of numerous books for children and adults including The Undertaken Trilogy (Death Watch, Mistle Child and Lych Way), The Secret Histories series—Giants (winner of an NCTE Notable Award), Mermaids and Hobgoblins, The Runes of Elfland and Goblins! (with artist Brian Froud), and The Life and Times of William Shakespeare (co-authored with his wife, Kristen McDermott) winner of the School Library Journal's Children's Choice Award in the UK. The former student and protégé of Pulitzer Prize-winner N. Scott Momday, Dr. Berk is now Professor of Mythology and Folklore in the English Department at Central Michigan University.