West Texas Book Festival

Featured Authors

(As featured authors are announced, they will be added to this page.)

Please note that it isn't possible to list the many awards that many of our featured authors have won.
This list only highlights a few of their honors.

Stephen Harrigan - Austin - Harrigan , this year's A.C. Greene Award winner, was born in Oklahoma City in 1948 and has lived in Texas since the age of five, growing up in Abilene and Corpus Christi. He is the author of nine books of fiction and non-fiction, including The Gates of the Alamo, which became a New York Times bestseller and Notable Book, and received a number of awards, including the TCU Texas Book Award, the Western Heritage Award from the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum, and the Spur Award for Best Novel of the West. His most recent novel, Remember Ben Clayton, also won a Spur Award, as well as the Jesse H. Jones Award from the Texas Institute of Letters and the James Fenimore Cooper Prize, given by the Society of American Historians for the best work of historical fiction. Harrigan is a faculty fellow at UT’s James A. Michener Center for Writers and a writer-at-large for Texas Monthly.

Lee Bacon - Brooklyn, N.Y. - Bacon is an Abilene native and author of the Joshua Dread series of books for grades 4-8, which were selected for the Texas Library Association's Spirit of Texas Reading Program. He has worked with 826NYC, an after-school tutoring and writing center, as well as Citizen Schools, an apprenticeship program that partners with middle schools in low income communities.

Barbara Brannon - Lubbock - Editor and travel writer Brannon is author of The Ferries of North Carolina: A Guide to the State’s Nautical Highways. She has spent most of her career in book publishing and before coming to Texas led the groundbreaking Publishing Laboratory at the University of North Carolina Wilmington.

Henry Chappell - Parker, TX -Chappell was born in Louisville, Kentucky in 1960. He moved to the Dallas, Texas area in 1982 where he worked as an electrical engineer in the defense industry. In 1986, Chappell read John Graves’ Goodbye to a River and knew then and there that he wanted to write. In the mid 1990s, he began work on a series of essays about the powerful bonds that connect hunter, land, and prey, published collectively as At Home on the Range with a Texas Hunter. The book received an Excellence in Craft Award from the Texas Outdoor Writers Association. He later received the 2014 Silver Spur Award for his western historical novel Silent We Stand, a story about the Underground Railroad in Texas before the Civil War.

Deborah Crombie - McKinney -Crombie was born in Dallas and grew up in Richardson. She graduated from Austin College in Sherman, Texas, with a degree in biology. In 1993 she wrote her first Detective Superintendent Duncan Kincaid/Sergeant Gemma James novel. A Share in Death was subsequently given Agatha and Macavity nominations for Best First Novel of 1993. The fifth novel, Dreaming of the Bones , a New York Times Notable Book for 1997, was short-listed by Mystery Writers of America for the 1997 Edgar Award for Best Novel, won the Macavity award for Best Novel, and was voted by the Independent Mystery Booksellers Association as one of the hundred best mysteries of the century. Her  sixteenth Duncan Kincaid/Gemma James novel, To Dwell in Darkness, will make its debut at this year's West Texas Book Festival on Sept. 22.

Nathan Dahlstrom - Lubbock - Dahlstrom writes under the pen name S. J. Dahlstrom. An avid outdoorsman and founder of Whetstone Boys Ranch, Nathan has numerous magazine credits for his writing and photography.  He has spent his life bouncing around the outdoors from New Mexico and Texas, north to Colorado and Montana and east to Michigan and New York.  The Adventures of Wilder Good  is his first book series. In his writing he draws on his experiences as a cowboy, husband, father and a boy’s ranch founder, and he has been encouraged and mentored in his writing by John Erickson, author of the Hank the Cowdog series at the 2012 A. C. Greene Award.

Glenn Dromgoole - Abilene- Dromgoole is the author of twenty-six books, with two more due out in 2014. His books cover a wide range of topics and styles, mixing whimsy with a generous dose of optimism. Most of his books are still in print, includingWhat Dogs Teach Us, which was a New York Times Bestseller Plus selection for eight weeks, reaching Number 24 in Hardcover Nonfiction in 1999. Glenn’s most recent books are more regional in focus – Abilene StoriesWest Texas Christmas StoriesColeman Springs USA; and Good Night Little Texan. He also co-authored 101 Essential Texas Books.  He and his wife Carol own Texas Star Trading Company in downtown Abilene, featuring Texas books, gourmet and gifts. He is founder and chairman of the West Texas Book Festival, and he also organizes the Texas Author Series every spring at the Library.

Kay Ellington - Lubbock - Ellington is a native West Texan and an alumna of the Kenyon Review Writers Workshop, has worked in newspaper audience and content development for thirty years from New York to California to the Carolinas and back again to Texas.

Tiffany Fink - Abilene - Fink is a Hardin-Simmons University associate professor of history, and author of an essay on "West Texas Women" in West Texas: A History of the Giant Side of the State. She teaches courses related to the histories of the United States and Latin America, including: Texas and the Southwestern United States, the American West, Native American Studies, Mexico and the Caribbean, Twentieth Century Latin America, and Cultural Geography. She also works with students in a variety of ways outside the classroom through offering local field trips, sponsoring students at history conferences, advising students about the wide array of professions available to history majors, and serving as faculty advisor for Phi Alpha Theta National Honor Society for History. She also serves as a patroness for Sigma Alpha Iota Music Fraternity.

Rosa Walston Latimer - Post - Latimer is the owner of Ruby Lane Books, an independent bookstore, and author of Harvey Houses of Texas: Historic Hospitality from the Gulf Coast to the Panhandle.

Bear Mills - Lubbock - Mills is the former Texas Teacher of the Year and author of a thriller set in South America, The Ecuadorian Deception.

Jay Moore - Abilene - Moore is an Abilene historian and author of the book Abilene History in Plain Sight, a follow-up to his award-winning video series on Abilene history. He was co-author with Glenn Dromgoole and Joe Specht of Abilene Stories, from Then to Now. Moore holds a master’s degree in history and a bachelor’s degree in political science and history from Hardin-Simmons University and teaches World Geography and U.S. History at Abilene High. Moore was awarded the 2013 Outstanding Teaching of the Humanities Award and was the 2011 winner of the Maxine Perini Award from the Taylor County Historical Commission.

Spelile Rivas - Arlington - Rivas was born in Houston, Texas and raised in Denver, Colorado, and Orange, Texas, by a family that hammered in, and prospered from, the benefits of an education, Rivas decided to write inspirational stories for children based on her teaching and mothering experience. Her most rewarding, and surprising, outcome of writing has been the acclaim received by her first book, No Time for Monsters/No Hay Tiempo Para Monstruos, winner of the 2010-2011 Tejas Star Book Award. She currently stays at home caring for her daughters and writing. The various perspectives that Spelile has gained have helped to make her stories inspirational, insightful, funny, creative, sometimes quirky, but always an experience.

René Saldaña, Jr. - Edinburg - Saldaña is an author of Latino young adult literature and is assistant professor language and literacy in the College of Education at Texas Tech. His stories include different issues that affect teenagers today such as love, danger, loyalty, pride, tragedy, family, and self-discovery.  His books include A Good Long Way, The Whole Sky Full of Stars, The Jumping Tree, Finding Our Way, and his new series of bilingual mysteries featuring Mickey Rangel, fifth grade detective. Dr. Saldaña believes that if reluctant and non-readers are shown literature that validates them and their culture in respectful and accurate ways, they will be more encouraged to take a more active role in their onw literacy education.

Russell Smith - San Angelo - Smith is the retired San Angelo police chief and author of The Gun That Wasn’t There, No Reason to Kill, and How I Published 4 Books in 6 Years (mistakes included).

Carlton Stowers - Cedar Hill - Stowers is the 2007 A.C. Greene Award winner. His books include bestsellers To the Last Breath  and Careless Whispers , both winners of the Mystery Writers of America's Edgar Allen Poe Award as the Best Fact Crime Book of the Year, Innocence Lost , and his autobiographical Sins of the Son . His books have been selections of the Literary Guild, Mystery Guild, Doubleday Book Club, True Crime Book Club, Preferred Choice Book Club, Playboy Book Club and Guideposts Book Club. He has written three books this year, including 101 Essential Texas Books, co-authored with Glenn Dromgoole, and his first novel, Comanche Trail .

H. C. Zachry - Abilene - Business owner, artist, and civic leader, Zachry was one of the editors, along with Jeff Salmon and Kim Snyder, of the new coffee table book, Frontier Texas!: A Journey through the Wild West.



Events | Featured Authors
Cookbook Gala | Culinary Cuisine Luncheon
Boots & Books Luncheon
A.C. Greene Award | Around Abilene
Festival Home | APL Home