UNC Writers’ Conference Features Internationally Renowned Sci Fi Author

Connie Willis

Connie Willis

The 2013 Rosenberry Writers' Conference at the University of Northern Colorado March 4-6 will feature readings by an internationally renowned, award-winning science fiction author and two other writers who also have Colorado roots.

Greeley's own Connie Willis, whose 15 novels and seven collections of short stories have earned an unprecedented seven Nebula awards and 11 Hugo awards, will close the three-day conference with a reading at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 6, in the Panorama room in the University Center, intersection of 10th Avenue and 20th Street.

The reading and a question-and-answer session, reception and book signing that follow it, are free and open to the public.

In addition to her Nebula and Hugo awards, two of the genre's most prestigious, Willis received the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America's 2011 Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award recognizing her lifetime achievements and placing her in the company of science fiction and fantasy writers such as Anne McCaffrey, Ursula K. Le Guin, Ray Bradbury, Isaac Asimov and Arthur C. Clarke.

Willis, a 2009 inductee of the Science Fiction Hall of Fame, earned her bachelor's degree in English and Elementary Education from UNC in 1967. She last appeared at the Rosenberry Writers' Conference in 2006.

The conference's other readings will be by Dan Beachy-Quick on Monday, March 4, and Aaron Abeyta on Tuesday, March 5. Both will start at 7 p.m. in the Panorama room and also will include a question-and-answer session, reception and book signing. Free parking will be available in lots adjacent to the building.

Beachy-Quick's works include five full-length books of poetry, five poetry chapbooks and a book of interlinked essays on Moby Dick. He grew up in Colorado and after graduating from the University of Denver, he attended the Iowa Writer's Workshop. He's taught at Grinnell College and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and is currently teaching in the MFA Writing program at Colorado State University.

Abeyta, a Colorado native, is an associate professor of English at Adams State College. Two collections of his poetry have been published, including Colcha, which received a 2002 American Book Award and a 2001 Colorado Book Award. He won a Colorado Council on the Arts Fellowship for Poetry in 1998 and received the grand prize from the Academy of American Poets while a graduate student at Colorado State University. His first novel was published in 2007.

In addition to the readings, the writers will hold informal discussion sessions with students and faculty from UNC's literature and writing classes.

Now in its 12th year, the conference is named in honor of the late philanthropist and English teacher Walter Rosenberry, who supported the conference and nonprofit organizations throughout Colorado.

For more information, contact conference organizer Lisa Zimmerman, assistant professor of English, at 970-351-2033 or lisa.zimmerman@unco.edu.

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