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Presenters

Keynoters
W. Bruce Cameron

Award-winning #1 New York Times and #1 USA Today bestselling author of 30 books, including the A Dog’s Purpose series, A Dog’s Way Home, The Dogs of Christmas and the Kirkus Award-nominated Repo Madness series, among many others.

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Dion Flynn

Cited by Oprah Magazine as “one of our favorite creative thinkers,” Dion Flynn is a writer, keynote speaker, improvisor, comedian and actor who is best known for playing Barack Obama on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.

 

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Cathy Guisewite
Creator of the iconic "Cathy" comic strip and author of Fifty Things That Aren't My Fault and Scenes from Isolation. The strip earned her the National Cartoonist Society Reuben Award, an Emmy Award for Outstanding Animated Program for the TV special Cathy — and the high honor of having her work displayed on the fronts of refrigerators across the land.
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Katrina Kittle
Inspirational speaker and author of Traveling Light, Two Truths and a Lie, The Kindness of Strangers (winner of the 2006 Great Lakes Book Award for Fiction), The Blessings of the Animals and Reasons to Be Happy.
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Cathryn Michon
Screenwriter, director and author of the nationally bestselling feminist memoir, The Grrl Genius Guide To Life.
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Laraine Newman
Writer, performer and founding member of the LA-based comedy troupe, The Groundlings, and an original cast member on Saturday Night Live. She wrote and narrated an audiobook memoir, May You Live in Interesting Times.
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Adriana Trigiani
New York Times bestselling author of 20 books in fiction and nonfiction, which have been published in 38 languages around the world. She is an award-winning playwright, television writer and producer, and filmmaker
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Emcee
Leighann Lord

Stand-up comedian, author and podcaster who's been seen on Comedy Central, HBO, The View, Netflix's Dry Bar Comedy and Showtime in Funny Women of a Certain Age.

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Stand-Up Comedy Host
Wendy Liebman

Stand-up comic who has performed on late-night shows — from Carson to Kimmel — and appeared in comedy specials on HBO, Comedy Central and Showtime. She was a semifinalist on America's Got Talent.

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"Erma's Got Talent" Host
Nancy Berk
Comedy writer for internationally awarded entertainers and television personalities, host and co-producer of the podcast Entertaining Insights featuring over 500 celebrity interviews, lyricist, humor columnist and author.
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Faculty
Wayne Arthurson
Associate agent for The Rights Factory in Toronto and the author of eight novels, five books of non-fiction and more than 200 articles in magazines and newspapers.
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Gina Barreca
Author of 10 books, including the bestselling They Used to Call Me Snow White, But I Drifted as well as Babes in Boyland: A Personal History of Coeducation in the Ivy League and It’s Not That I’m Bitter: How I Learned to Stop Worrying About Visible Panty Lines and Conquer the World. She's the Board of Trustees Distinguished Professor of English at the University of Connecticut
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Tracy Beckerman

Nationally syndicated humor columnist and the author of three books: Lost in Suburbia: A Momoir; Rebel without a Minivan: Observations on Life in the ’Burbs; and, her newest, Barking at the Moon: A Story of Life, Love, and Kibble.

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David Braughler

Founder and CEO of Braughler Books. Over the last 12 years, he’s collaborated and worked directly with more than 500 authors on nearly 600 titles in more than 10 countries.

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Judy Carter
Author of The New Comedy Bible, the go-to book for anyone launching a career in comedy. As one of America’s top stand-up comics, she performs and teaches comedy internationally.
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Joni B. Cole
Author of two acclaimed books for writers: Good Naked: Reflections on How to Write More, Write Better, and Be Happier (included in Poets & Writers’ list of “Best Books for Writers”) and Toxic Feedback: Helping Writers Survive and Thrive. She teaches creative writing classes through her own Writer’s Center of White River Junction in Vermont.
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Margaret Danko

Literary agent with Paper Over Board, a division of the Irene Goodman Literary Agency, in Manhattan.

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Lori B. Duff

Lori B. Duff was recently named "Atlanta's Funniest Lawyer" when it was revealed that the first place winner was not a lawyer. (She won by default.) Lori is an award-winning author of four humor collections, including her latest, If You Did What I Asked in the First Place, which won the Foreword Indies Gold Medal. She is the vice president of the National Society of Newspaper Columnists. In 2020, she won first place in humor writing in the NSNC’s annual column contest.

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Arielle Eckstut

Co-founder of The Book Doctors, which has helped hundreds of authors get their books published, and the co-founder of Can Do Entertainment, a production company dedicated to bringing new voices and ideas to film and television. Author of 10 books and literary agent at the Levine Greenberg Rostan Literary Agency. Co-wrote The Essential Guide to Getting Your Book Published

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Ann Garvin
USA Today bestselling author of I Thought You Said This Would Work, I Like You Just Fine When You’re Not Around, The Dog Year and On Maggie’s Watch. She teaches at Drexel University Masters of Fine Arts program and is the founder of the Tall Poppy Writers, where she is committed to helping women writers find readers.
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Annabelle Gurwitch

Actress, activist and author of five books including the New York Times bestseller and Thurber Prize finalist, I See You Made an Effort. Longtime cohost of Dinner & a Movie on TBS and a regular commentator on NPR. She’s taught essay writing and storytelling at The School of the New York Times, Miami Dade Community College, Thurber House, George Washington University, Maine Media College and the Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop, where she keynoted in 2020.

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Kellie Haddock

Singer, songwriter, wife and mom who has lived through tragedy and found hope and joy on the other side. The Thank You Project, a short film featuring Kellie’s story of gratitude after tragedy, has attracted more than 150 million views and has been featured on NBC’s Today and The Huffington Post and in Cosmopolitan and other national and international media. Kellie has performed across the United States and in Iraq, Israel and China, offering music that engages the soul in all of its beauty and vulnerability. 

Kellie Haddock
Dave Jackson
Award-winning 2018 Podcasters Hall of Fame inductee best known for launching the School of Podcasting in 2005. In his 15 years of podcasting, he has launched more than 30 podcasts with over four million downloads.
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Kathy Kinney
Best known for her iconic role as “Mimi” on the ABC hit series, The Drew Carey Show, Kathy has appeared in dozens of TV shows and movies. She is the co-author of three books and the star and co-producer of the award-winning website for children, Mrs.P.com.
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Margot Leitman
Author of the bestselling book, Long Story Short: the Only Storytelling Guide You’ll Ever Need as well as Gawky: Tales of an Extra Long Awkward Phase and What's Your Story? A Workbook for the Storyteller in All of Us. Founder of the storytelling program at the Upright Citizen’s Brigade Theatre and a five-time winner of the Moth StorySLAM and a winner of the Moth GrandSLAM, receiving the first ever score of a perfect 10.
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Susan Pohlman

Founder and director of the Phoenix Writers Network, freelance writer, editor, writing coach and the author of two memoirs, Halfway to Each Other: How a Year in Italy Brought Our Family Home and A Time To Seek: Meaning, Purpose, and Spirituality at Midlife.

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Cindy Ratzlaff

Author and a 30-year veteran of the book publishing industry, having held executive positions at Rodale Inc. and Simon & Schuster, as well as creating and implementing the launch campaigns for more than 150 New York Times’ bestsellers. 

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Rebecca Regnier
Award-winning journalist, television host, humor columnist, author and viral video creator. Her humor videos have gone viral, racking up millions of views on TikTok and Facebook.
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Julie Schumacher

Author of nine books, including the national bestseller, Dear Committee Members, winner of the Thurber Prize for American Humor. She is the first woman to have won the Thurber Prize. She is a professor of English at the University of Minnesota.

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David Henry Sterry

Co-founder of The Book Doctors, which has helped hundreds of authors get their books published, and co-founder of Can Do Entertainment, a production company dedicated to bringing new voices and ideas to film and television. Author of 16 books on a wide variety of subjects, from memoir to middle-grade fiction, sports to reference. His work has been translated into more than a dozen languages, optioned by Hollywood, and appeared on the cover of The New York Times Sunday Book Review.

 

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Elysse Wagner
Campaign strategist for Books Forward, where she helps authors determine the most effective promotional path for their book releases, and for crafting their brand.
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Karen Walrond

Author, lawyer, leadership coach and activist. A Certified Dare to Lead™ facilitator, Karen has helped thousands of people around the world find purpose and meaning in their work. Her award-winning blog, Chookooloonks, is a lifestyle, inspiration and photography destination. A sought-after speaker, Karen is the host of the highly rated podcast, The Make Light Show, and the author of two books, The Lightmaker's Manifesto: How to Work for Change without Losing Your Joy and The Beauty of Different.

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Brooke Warner

Publisher of She Writes Press and SparkPress, president of Warner Coaching Inc., and author of Write On, Sisters!, Green-light Your Book, What's Your Book? and three books on memoir. Brooke is a TEDx speaker, weekly podcaster (of “Write-minded” with co-host Grant Faulkner of NaNoWriMo) and the former executive editor of Seal Press. She writes a monthly column for Publishers Weekly.

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Maria Whelan
Literary agent with Inkwell Management in New York City.
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Alan Zweibel

An original Saturday Night Live writer, Alan has won five Emmy Awards for his work in television, which also includes It’s Garry Shandling’s Show (which he co-created and produced), the Late Show with David Letterman and Curb Your Enthusiasm. Author of 11 books, including the 2006 Thurber Prize winning novel The Other Shulman, the popular children’s book, Our Tree Named Steve, and a parody of the Haggadah titled, For This We Left Egypt? that he wrote with Dave Barry and Adam Mansbach.

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Erma Bombeck Writers' Workshop

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