Final week of Attending Participants at Iowa Author Fest 2017

  Francis Sparks grew up on a farm in Iowa where he spent his days avoiding bulls and other livestock as he created castles in the pasture with odds and ends from the machine shed and his imagination.

In middle school, he fell in love with reading when he discovered TSR/Wizard of the Coast’s treasure trove of fantasy novels and he began to dream of one day becoming a writer. Working as a librarian’s assistant in college, he stumbled upon The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler and quickly devoured all of his novels and Francis’s love of the mystery/detective story was born.

In his early thirties, Francis began chasing his dream of becoming an author and began writing seriously. That dream came true when his debut novel Made Safe was signed by Pandamoon Publishing in late 2015. Francis Sparks currently lives in Des Moines, Iowa with his amazing wife, Kelly. If he’s not working on his next novel or short story, you can find him teaching his children about dragons. website –

Jan Walters

Jan’s new series, A Ghost and A Cop, is set in Des Moines. York Street is the first book in the supernatural thriller series. The series features a serious-minded cop and an irksome ghost who pair up to catch serial killers, who have unique abilities. York Street was a finalist for the Eric Hoffer Award in 2016. The link for the book trailer is or on utube

  1. NELSON FREEMAN is a retired police sergeant of 30 years, holding expert status as a fingerprint, handwriting and polygraph examiner.  He served on 5 ships in the Navy and attained the rank of Chief Petty Officer, and Master Sergeant in the Iowa Army National Guard.

Larry Stumbo

Larry has had various experiences throughout his life, from sports in high school, his daughters’ activities, interest in family activities and history, military service, a nursing career, working for the U.S. census, to his most recent involvement, promoting of Iowa authors to finally having a book published; “Poems and History of Mary Elizabeth Gilbert (Stumbo)”. A compilation by Nelle Windsor, daughter of Mary Elizabeth, who placed the poems, photos and family history into an album. Mary Elizabeth Gilbert (Stumbo) is Larry’s Great-grand mother. Nelle wanted to have this album put together for posterity of her mother’s legacy.  Larry wrapped the album into a form that could be enjoyed by everyone without taking away the styles of the written words and photos of the time.

Larry has finished his, “Experience as a New Soldier”, one chapter of his life and he is now working on the other chapters of his life.

Sara J. Weis is a creative and passionate teacher who has inspired children for over eighteen years. Through her bestselling book, Go Go Yoga for Kids: A Complete Guide to Using Yoga for Kids, she has combined her experience as an elementary and junior high teacher and as a certified kid and adult yoga instructor to help introduce children to the lifelong benefits of yoga. She is also the creator of the Kids Yoga Challenge Pose Cards which allow adults and children to move progressively through yoga poses at their own rate and abilities. You can find Sara at

Kathryn Daugherty is a romance writer who resides in Pella, Iowa. Kathryn has two indie published novels, A Case of Hearts and She Promised Her Heart. Kathryn has also written several award- winning short stories. For more information about Kathryn’s work.



NAN Mc ADAM Nan has always enjoyed writing. Nan’s first published nonfiction novel, Surviving the STRESS of Your Parents’ Old Age, is a book about her journey through elder care published in 2013. Nan’s first young adult fantasy novel, Saving Mim, was published in February 2015, the second book, The Secret Key of Mim, in 2016 and the third book at the end of the year.


I’m originally from Puerto Rico but have spent half of my life in Iowa.  My favorite authors include Edgar Allan Poe and Gabriel Garcia Marquez.  My books are based on reality but sprinkled with a good dose of faerie dust.  I hope my books can be entertaining but also thought provoking.

Karla Wright

A retired Human Resource Management Consultant, Karla Wright has a passion for family, Iowa and American history. “Iowa’s Devoted Daughter” is Karla’s first novel.  Karla is a member of DAR, various heritage societies, and the Iowa Historical and Genealogical Societies.  The Ankeny family illustrations were created by


Lady Laindora dwells in the imagination of author  Sue Raymond. There many tales are spun of adventure with dragons, wizards, knights, and  spells. Lady Laindora’s first  novel  is Healer of Surflex. Sue writes crime  murder mystery DeBois series and a drama novel Resin La Rock. Five children books loom in the future.

JORDYN MERYL Crossing many genres, Jordyn Meryl spins chronicles of romance ,  paranormal  and  fantasy, for they are stories worth telling, even at the risk of  revealing true feelings.

J.C. HAMM Emerging from the dark world of drugs, abuse, and  domestic violence, Because of Me, is a story about starting over and the lessons learned from past mistakes. J.C.’s new book “Life Beneath The Willow” is about a Marine and single father reluctantly returns to his hometown with his daughter Honor. He confronts events from the past. Available on Amazon, and Barnes&Noble.

BIRDIE HAWKS Romance Birdie Hawks is from Iowa and has been married for 36 years. She is retired from the Iowa Army National Guard and as a federal technician. She has two sons, 12 grandkids and 3 great grandkids.

JOYCE KNOCKS Retired educator and a “newbie author” of two children’s books. Active with tennis, duplicate bridge, flower gardening and community volunteering. Recently read her book “I am NOT dumb and I am NOT a stinky butt!” to 2000+ Des Moines elementary students.


 lives in Des Moines, Iowa with his beautiful wife, Ren. He spends his time writing, reading, and working to promote and support writing communities in Iowa through his company Davenport Writes, LLC. You can keep track of Matthew through his twitter account @spazenport.
You can follow his blog at

Van Harden

For 31 years Van Harden has hosted the most listened to radio program in Iowa history, heard on WHO Radio, weekdays from 5 till 9 am. He recently retired as Program Director of the station after 30 years. He has been a Bible teacher for 35 years, leading to his writing of his book, “Life In The Purple Wedge; Finding Yourself on the Map and How That Changes Everything.”

 KAREN CARR  www.karenmcarr.vpweb.comKaren’s new book published in January 2016 is Mystery at Burr Oak: A Dog Named Wang. It is a cozy mystery/romance inspired by her mother’s dog, Wang.  Another children’s book, she wrote with her 6 year old granddaughter, is currently in the publishing process (What Is That Strange Noise?).  She continues to work on a tween chapter book series and a historical Christian romance.

Marvin Wilmes Author of “Beyond the Horizon” and “A Quest for Freedom”

Blythe Stanfel  Young Adult

Linda McCann “Lost towns of Iowa” 

Shawn Palek , Artist -Studied Commercial Art & Advertising at DMACC. Presently teaching Art at DMACC.

Air brush artist that is not afraid to explore other art media. Does  consignment between work and family activities. Present inspired project is painting older famous authors ie Edgar Allen Poe.

Don C. Brown

We are proud to have Jazz specialist for listening pleasure enjoyment. From Des Moines he comes from a musical family. His family includes Jazz Hall of Fame members Ellsworth and Dartanyan,his father and brother respectively, as well as his nephew Jaimeo. Don is currently available for bookings and can be reached @ (515) 249-7045 or email Chavel@mchsi. com.




One thought on “Final week of Attending Participants at Iowa Author Fest 2017

  1. Pingback: Final week of Attending Participants at Iowa Author Fest 2017 — iowaauthorfest | iowaauthorfest

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