Clarksville, Tennessee, was a pivotal center of the Southern Renaissance of the 1920s and '30s. Writers of the era living in Clarksville included Robert Penn Warren, Evelyn Scott, Caroline Gordon and Allen Tate. Additional writers, including Cleanth Brooks, Ford Madox Ford, Donald Davidson, Katherine Ann Porter, Robert Lowell, Andrew Lytle, Malcolm Cowley, Frances and Brainard Cheney and others gathered to write and discuss their work at "Benfolly," Tate and Gordon's home overlooking the banks of the Cumberland River. Their Clarksville home became a Mecca for writers of the Southern Renaissance, and from that site poured literature which enriched the American scene. In that great tradition, we offer you the Twelfth Annual Clarksville Writers Conference.

 



Jim Squires

Jim Squires

James D. "Jim" Squires was born in Nashville, Tennessee, in 1943. He holds a B.A. degree in English and Political Science from Peabody College, Vanderbilt University. From July 1981 until December 1989, he was editor and executive vice-president of the Chicago Tribune, which under his leadership won nine Pulitzer Prizes. He held the same positions with the Orlando Sentinel from 1986 to 1981; and was Washington bureau chief of the Tribune from 1973 to 1976. As a national political correspondent for the Tribune and earlier for the Nashville Tennessean, he covered twelve national political conventions, three presidential elections and the White House under three different administrations in Washington, including Watergate and the impeachment proceedings against Richard Nixon. He also reported from the China and the Soviet Union.

In 1970-71 Squires was a Nieman Fellow at Harvard University where he later served as a faculty member in 1990-91, holding the Lombard Chair in the John F. Kennedy School of Government. The following year he held the Seigenthaler Chair of Excellence in First Amendment Studies at Middle Tennessee State University before becoming media advisor to Ross Perot's independent campaign for President. During the 1980s and 90s he appeared frequently as a political analyst on CNN and PBS, and as a guest on NBC's Meet the Press and Nightline on ABC.

As Tribune editor Squires founded the American Heartland Literary Awards. He is co-author of A Search for Justice, a legal history of political assassinations in the 1960s. His controversial critique of the American press, READ ALL ABOUT IT: The Corporate Takeover of America's Newspapers, was published in January 1993, by Times Books, then a division of Random House. A second book for Random House entitled Secrets of the Hopewell Box, a true story of Southern politics, was published in May of 1996. A paperback and ebook edition was published by the Vanderbilt University Press in 2013. The same year he published a new collection of short fiction entitled Bigger 'n Texas and his debut novel, a political Roman a clef entitled West End under the pen name Crockett White, was published in 2015 by Old Hickory Press.

In 1982 Squires married the former Mary Anne Santavy of Chicago and for the last 25 years they have owned and operated Two Bucks Farm, a commercial breeding farm near Versailles, Kentucky, where he bred 2001 Kentucky Derby winner, Monarchos, the second fastest Derby winner in history. An account of this extraordinary experience, Horse of a Different Color, was published in 2002 by Public Affairs/Perseus Books. A sequel critique of the Thoroughbred Racing industry entitled Headless Horsemen followed in 2009. Squires is one of the founders of the WaterHayOats Alliance (WHOA), the group of owners and breeders pushing for federal legislation to clean up horse racing by establishing uniform medication rules and ending all race day medication.


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Scott Dannemiller

Scott Dannemiller

Scott Dannemiller is a speaker, author, blogger, worship leader, leadership consultant and former missionary with the Presbyterian Church (USA). His book, The Year without a Purchase: One Family's Quest to Stop Shopping and Start Connecting has been featured on Good Morning America, MSNBC, Today.com and FABLife. Scott also publishes a regular blog titled The Accidental Missionary, where he encourages others to dive into servant leadership opportunities in their daily lives. His work regularly appears in publications such as The Huffington Post, HomeFront Magazine, The Church Times and Presbyterians Today.

Today, Scott makes his living as the founder and president of LifeWork Associates, a leadership development consulting firm focused on bringing more trust and authenticity to corporate America. Most weeks, he can be found delivering a workshop or keynote speech somewhere in the United States. He and his wife Gabby reside in Nashville, Tennessee with two very loud children. Visit Scott Dannemiller on the web at www.accidentalmissionary.net.


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Beverly Fisher

Beverly Fisher graduated from Gallatin High School, the University of Memphis and Vanderbilt Law School. She has appeared on "60 Minutes" in an expose about insurance scams, and she was a staff attorney for Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee for many years before going into private practice in Nashville and in Clarksville, focusing on Social Security Disability cases. She has climbed Mt. St. Helens and Mayan pyramids and canoed many Southern waterways.

Grace Among the Leavings is Fisher's first published book of fiction and is based, in part, on observations of her grandparents' Sumner County, Tennessee, farm and her grandfather's stories of his Civil War ancestor. Grace has been developed into two plays: one stage adaptation by Dennis Darling and Kari Catton (which was attended by more than 570 people when presented May 22 - 24, 2015, at Theatre in the Park in Lincoln's New Salem State Historic Site in Illinois) and another by John McDonald, a staged reading of which will be presented June 20 - 28, 2016, at the Roxy Regional Theatre.

For more information about Beverly Fisher and Grace Among the Leavings, please visit www.thorncraftpublishing.com/grace-among-the-leavings.html.



Tamara Leigh

Tamara Leigh

Tamara Leigh is the USA Today bestselling, award-winning author of fourteen historical and contemporary romance novels published with Bantam, HarperCollins and RandomHouse since 1994.

In 2012, Tamara dipped her toes in the waters of indie publishing with the release of Dreamspell, a medieval time travel romance. Finding the waters pleasantly warm, she hasn't stopped dipping, publishing a total of twelve medieval romances that include the bestselling five-book Age of Faith series and her new series, The Feud. Tamara's #1 Amazon bestsellers — Lady at Arms, Lady of Eve, Lady of Fire, and Lady of Conquest — are the first of her general market romances to be rewritten as clean reads.

Tamara lives near Nashville with her husband, sons, a Doberman who bares his teeth not only to threaten the UPS man but to smile, and a feisty Morkie who keeps her company during long writing stints. Visit Tamara Leigh on the web at www.tamaraleigh.com.


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Alison Davis Lyne

Alison Davis Lyne

Alison Davis Lyne is a freelance illustrator who lives and works on a small south central Kentucky farm with her husband, sculptor Frank Lyne. She has created spot illustrations, magazine covers, children's books, greeting cards and traditional portraits, and also paints for the fine art market.

Lyne has illustrated eleven titles for Pelican Publishing Company, including Evangeline for Children, Kudzu Chaos, Easter Day Alphabet, Jacques et la Canne a la Sucre: A Cajun Jack and the Beanstalk, Thanksgiving Day Alphabet, Halloween Alphabet, Bo and the Roaring Pines, Bo and the Christmas Bandit, G is for Grits: A Southern Alphabet, Little Things Aren't Little When You're Little, and Petite Rouge: A Cajun Twist to an Old Tale.

Lyne's artwork graces displays at the Kentucky History Museum, and she has also painted fourteen portraits for the Kentucky Commission on Women's "Kentucky Women Remembered" exhibit on permanent display in the Kentucky State Capitol rotunda. She is a member of SCBWI (Society for Children's Book Writing and Illustration) and edits a column for their Bulletin. Visit Alison Davis Lyne on the web at www.lyneart.com.


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Joanne F. Miller

Joanne F. Miller

"Creativity should not be relegated only to children" is Joanne F. Miller's primary message. Writing, drawing and painting, combined with other artistic venues, are her creative playground. Joanne is an artist, teacher and, most of all, a passionate writer. She co-authored Be Your Finest Art with fine artist Dorsey McHugh and has a new book release in July called Creating a Haven of Peace: When You're Feeling Down, Finances Are Flat and Tempers Are Rising. She has also authored the children's I Wanna' Be book series based on personality styles of children and has a new children's book to be released in October 2016 called What If It Were Possible?, featuring her nine-year-old granddaughter as the illustrator.

Joanne hosts weekly art classes which she feels enhances her own writing ability while encouraging others to tap into their right brain to become more imaginative and prolific with their writing. She is the wife of best-selling author, Dan Miller (48 Days to the Work You Love, No More Dreaded Mondays, Wisdom Meets Passion, etc.). She knows it takes a lot more than being a good writer to get your book published, marketed and sold! Joanne also knows one writes best from his or her own experience and finds her family (which includes fourteen grandchildren) provides a plethora of topics for blogs, stories and books!

Visit Joanne F. Miller on the web at www.joannefmiller.com.


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Jennifer Rawls

Jennifer Rawls

In 2005, after practicing law for more than fifteen years, Jennifer Rawls became the executive director of the Tennessee Economic Council on Women — and it changed her life forever.

"The Council's work really opened my eyes to how many obstacles women still face today in building a career," she says. She was particularly interested in the passage of the 19th Amendment, which gave women the right to vote. "There are so many reasons I love to tell that story. I'm a political junkie and always have been interested in American history. The fact that the battle for women's suffrage came down to Tennessee just brought it home — literally — for me," Jennifer says. And Rawls has brought it home for her readers with a fictional account of women's struggle for suffrage in her debut novel, The Vote.

Rawls currently serves as director of communications and public information officer for the City of Clarksville under Mayor Kim McMillan. She says working for Mayor McMillan allows her to bring together all of her professional interests: writing, politics, history, public policy and communications. Visit Jennifer Rawls on the web at www.jenniferrawls.com.


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Jacob Rougemont

Jacob Rougemont

Jacob Rougemont is a comic book writer and researcher, most often known as part of the writing team on the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe (2004-present) and Official Index to the Marvel Universe (2009-2013).

A longtime comic book fan, he began collecting comic books as a child in the early 1990s and branched off into the internet during his high school years with the founding of his Avengers fansite, "Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Fan Page," in 2000. Eventually becoming a regular contributor for the Marvel Appendix website, Jacob soon jumped into comic book writing with the relaunching of the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe series in 2004, his first published work being the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Avengers 2004 one-shot. Jacob became a regular member of the Handbook writing team of the Official Handbook hardcover series and soon branched off into the relaunched Official Index to the Marvel Universe series in 2009.

Jacob occasionally contributes both writing and research for various projects, most recently writing for the Avengers Now! Handbook#1 and the Marvel Expanding Universe Wall Chart: Beaux Arts Editions for Rizzoli Publishing, and contribution research to collections such as the Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars Activity Book Facsimile Collection TPB.


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Ken Sherman

Ken Sherman

Ken Sherman is President of Ken Sherman & Associates, a Los Angeles based literary agency. An agent for more than twenty years, working with book, film and television writers, Ken has accumulated an impressive list of clients with such notable names as David Guterson, Anne Perry, Franz Kafka, Tawni O'Dell, Willa Cather, John Updike, Starhawk, and Julio Cortazar.

In addition to his agency work, Sherman is also a popular and accomplished speaker, having taught and lectured extensively at venues including UCLA, USC, The American Film Institute, The Aspen Institute, The San Francisco Writers Conference, and The Eugene International Film Festival where he recently received a Lifetime Achievement Award. Visit Ken Sherman & Associates on the web at www.kenshermanassociates.com.


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Michel Stone

Michel Stone

Michel Stone's debut novel The Iguana Tree, which Kirkus Reviews says "recalls the work of John Steinbeck," received a starred review from Publishers Weekly and an IPPY Award as one of the top novels published in 2012 by an independent press. The book was named a finalist for Foreword Reviews Book of the Year in the multicultural fiction category. The New York Journal of Books called The Iguana Tree "a triumph." Her novel has been lauded for addressing a controversial issue without seeming heavy-handed or political and without passing judgment on her characters or shying away from hard truths.

Stone has published numerous stories and essays, and she is a 2011 recipient of the South Carolina Fiction Award awarded by the SC Arts Commission. She is a graduate of Clemson University with a master's degree from Converse College. She is also an alumna of the Sewanee Writers' Conference.

Raised on the South Carolina coast, Stone has lived in Spartanburg, South Carolina, for over 20 years, and she and her husband have three children. Stone serves on several boards and is an Aspen Institute Liberty Fellow. Her second novel, Border Child, will be released in early 2017 from Doubleday, a division of Penguin Random House. Visit Michel Stone on the web at www.michelstone.com.



Steven Womack

Steven Womack

Steven Womack began his first novel when he was eighteen years old. A short eighteen years later, he finally sold one. His first published novel, Murphy's Fault, was the only debut mystery on the 1990 New York Times Notable Book List. Since then, he has published ten more novels, winning an Edgar Award for Dead Folks' Blues and a Shamus Award for Murder Manual. His latest novel, written in collaboration with New York City-based screenwriter Wayne McDaniel, is Resurrection Bay, published in June 2014 by Midnight Ink Books.

A scriptwriter as well, Womack co-wrote the screenplays for Proudheart, which was nominated for the CableAce Award, and Volcano: Fire on the Mountain, an ABC television movie which was one of the most-watched television films of the year.

Womack lives in Nashville with his writer-wife, Shalynn Ford Womack, and teaches screenwriting at The Film School of Watkins College of Art, Design & Film, where he also served five years as Chair of The Film School. A licensed pilot, Womack loves to fly and scuba dive in his spare time. Unfortunately, there hasn't been any spare time since 2001.

Visit Steven Womack on the web at www.stevenwomack.com or connect with him on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Steven-Womack-330314577000894.


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Amy Wright

Amy Wright

Amy Wright is the author of two poetry collections, a collaborative poetry book with William Wright titled Creeks of the Upper South, and five chapbooks. She is also the Nonfiction Editor of Zone 3 Press and Coordinator of Creative Writing at Austin Peay State University.

Her poetry and prose appears in Appalachian Heritage, Brevity, Denver Quarterly, McSweeney's Internet Tendency, Passages North, Terrain.org and Tupelo Quarterly. She was awarded a Peter Taylor Fellowship for the Kenyon Review Writers' Workshop, an Individual Artist's Fellowship from the Tennessee Arts Commission, and a fellowship to the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts in her home state of Virginia.

Visit Amy Wright on the web at www.awrightawright.com.


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