Join us at the Indiana State Library when Indiana’s best established and emerging writers will meet for a full day of classes on the writing craft. Featuring a keynote address and a creative nonfiction breakout session from author Natalie Lima. Other breakout sessions include poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, publishing and a writing roundtable presented by J.R. Jamison, Mitchell L. Douglas, Matthew Graham, Noley Reid, Katherine Higgs-Coulthard, Sarah Layden and Suzanne Walker You’ll leave full of inspiration, armed with writing drafts ripe for experimentation—along with a hundred other writers who feel the same way.

For registration information, click here.

Natalie Lima is a Cuban-Puerto Rican writer, raised in Las Vegas, NV and Hialeah, FL. She is a first-generation college graduate of Northwestern University and a graduate of the MFA program in creative nonfiction writing at the University of Arizona. Her essays and fiction have been published in Longreads, Guernica, Brevity, The Offing, Catapult, Sex and the Single Woman (Harper Perennial, 2022), Body Language (Catapult, 2022), and elsewhere. Lima’s writing has been honored in Best Small Fictions (2020), and noted twice in Best American Essays (2019 and 2020). Her work has received support from PEN America Emerging Voices, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, Tin House, the VONA/Voices Workshop, the Mellon Foundation, the Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing, and the Hedgebrook Writers’ Residency. Lima recently joined the creative writing faculty at Butler University as Assistant Professor in the Department of English. She is currently working on a memoir and an essay collection.

Katherine Higgs-Coulthard is a YA author, assistant professor of literacy at Saint Mary’s College, Notre Dame, and a teacher consultant for the National Writing Project. Her research explores best practices in teaching writing, engaging teacher candidates in contextualizing practice, and creating authentic opportunities for writing with K-12 students. Kat’s YA novel, Junkyard Dogs, is available through Penguin Random House/ Peachtree Teen.

Mitchell L. H. Douglas is the author of dying in the scarecrow’s arms, \blak\ \al-fə bet\, winner of the Persea Books Lexi Rudnitsky/Editor’s Choice Award, and Cooling Board: A Long-Playing Poem, an NAACP Image Award and Hurston/Wright Legacy Award nominee.  He is a 2021 National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing Fellow and Associate Professor of English at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI).

Matthew Graham is the author of four collections of poetry and is the recipient of awards and fellowships from the Academy of American Poets, Pushcart, the Indiana Arts Commission and the Vermont Studio Center. Graham is a Professor Emeritus of English at the University of Southern Indiana and is the current Indiana State Poet Laureate. He is married to the painter Katie Waters.

J.R. Jamison is the award-winning author of the memoir Hillbilly Queer and host of the NPR podcast and radio show The Facing Project (recorded and produced at Indiana Public Radio). He is also a founder of the national Facing Project network, a nonprofit in 18 states and over 100 communities that creates a more understanding and empathetic world through stories that inspire action, where he serves as president of the organization. J.R. has written for The Huffington Post, Pangyrus, Writer’s Digest, and various other print and web publications. His work has been covered by outlets such as The Guardian, Harlem World Magazine, PBS, Runner’s World, and The Statesider, among others. Currently, he is writing his debut young-adult novel.

Sarah Layden is the author of Imagine Your Life Like This, stories; Trip Through Your Wires, a novel; and The Story I Tell Myself About Myself, winner of the Sonder Press Chapbook Competition. She is co-author with Bryan Furuness of The Invisible Art of Literary Editing. Her recent nonfiction appears in The Washington Post, Poets & Writers, Salon, and The Millions. She is an Assistant Professor of English at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.

Noley Reid is the author of four books: the novels Pretend We Are Lovely and In the Breeze of Passing Things and the short story collection So There! Her fourth book, a collection of stories called Origami Dogs, is forthcoming from Autumn House Press. Her last book, Pretend We Are Lovely, was called “scrumptious” by O, The Oprah Magazine. Her fiction and nonfiction have appeared in the Southern Review, The Rumpus, Meridian, Pithead Chapel, Split Lip Magazine, The Lily, Bustle, Tin House, Arts & Letters, and Los Angeles Review of Books. Reid taught creative writing for 18 years in colleges, universities, and community centers. Eight years ago, she gave up tenure to write fulltime but still seeks out teaching gigs from time to time because she misses it so. She lives in southwest Indiana with her two best boys, a rabbit, and the two greatest dogs in the world. Follow her on Twitter at @NoleyReid and check out her latest news at

Suzanne Walker received her Master of Library Science from Indiana University. She is currently the Indiana Young Readers Center Librarian and Director of the Indiana Center for the Book, an affiliate of the Library of Congress. She coordinates Indiana’s Letters About Literature competition annually. Suzanne judged the National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Awards in 2013 and 2014 and the Indiana Poetry Out Loud competition in 2017. Most recently she was a judge for the 2020 Indiana Authors Awards and the 2021 Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award. She has presented numerous times at Indiana Library Federation’s District conferences, annual conferences, and youth conferences and is proud to have been interviewed about Indiana authors by NPR.