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Young Authors Conference Theme & Keynote

This year we are proud to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Young Authors Conference!

The 2020 Young Authors Conference theme is Words Have Power. Words and stories hold tremendous power: they spark imagination, inspire confidence, help heal, honor family, show gratitude, demonstrate kindness, and share truth.

Geoff Herbach is our March keynote.

The Young Authors Conference blows me away. I can't wait to be part of the 30th. The words written here could power a cruise ship!

Geoff Herbach is the author of 10 novels, including those in the Stupid Fast trilogy, Fat Boy vs. The Cheerleaders, and Hooper. His new book, Cracking the Bell, hits shelves in September of 2019. Geoff's accolades include the Cybils Award for best YA fiction and the Minnesota Book Award. In the past, Geoff wrote and performed comedy and traveled around the country telling weird stories in rock clubs. Geoff teaches writing at Minnesota State, Mankato and loves presenting at YAC.


Kevin Kling is our May keynote.

At the heart of our stories, we write about how families, friends and communities bolster us during challenging experiences, and these are the stories that feather our nest. But as writers, the creative force comes from what makes each of us different. We often learn the greatest truths when we are able to distill and value our unique perspective.

Kevin Kling, renowned Minnesota storyteller, has written plays for children that have premiered at the Children's Theatre Company in Minneapolis and Seattle Children's Theater. His one-person shows and full cast plays have been produced at regional theaters such as The Guthrie and The Kennedy Center. Kevin has written 5 books and appears often on PBS and Minnesota Public Radio. Kevin is most proud of his work as a teacher, playwright and performer with Interact Center, a company that creates art in the spirit of radical inclusion.

At the Young Authors Conference, students...

Are challenged and encouraged to be better writers.

Leave with new strategies, ideas, and skills to become a better writer.

Learn that strong writing skills are important in life.