Originally published Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 07:26p.m.

KINGMAN – Kingman Area Books Are Magic Festival is having its 14th annual Book Festival and second annual Writer’s Conference.

The two-day writer’s conference offers assorted sessions and workshops. The first session starts at 8 a.m. Friday Sept. 20 with tips on how to get the most out of what the conference has to offer.

Stephanie Cress, KABAM facilitator and local author, said it’s an opportunity to learn about the industry, mingle and network.

“We don’t have opportunities like this in the area. The closest one is in Las Vegas. Kingman is very central to many communities that don’t have this service like meeting editors, publishers and authors,” Cress said.

Other sessions include “Book Marketing 101,” “What editors do for you,” “Realities of the Slush Pile” and more. Friday will end with a poetry slam at Beale Street Brews, 510 Beale St.

The headline poet during the poetry slam is Myrlin Hepworth, who won Arizona Humanities Council’s Rising Star Award for his work as a youth advocate and teaching artist.

The poetry slam is free to attend and participate. Open mic starts at 5 p.m. which contestants can use to warm up or noncontestants to participate.

The poetry slam competition starts at 6 p.m. Contestants can win up to $150. There are a few rules: poems must be rated PG-13 or lower, poems must not exceed three minutes, and poets should bring a total of four poems to cover each of three elimination rounds plus the final round.

“Poetry Slam is very high energy, usually a powerful beam of professional observation,” Mikel Weisser, poetry slam host said. “It’s the most intense song you’ve ever heard.”

Poems must be original and there could be some intense topics and strong language, Weisser said.

The festival starts Thursday at the local schools where authors and poets will visit with students to inspire creativity.

The conference will also have publishers accepting pitches. New Link Publishers will accept story ideas on genres of fantasy, science fiction and paranormal. Ink & Quill Publishers is accepting pitches for mainstream genres like general fiction, romance, mystery, historical fiction and nonfiction. Crystal Publishing is accepting pitches on children’s stories, young adult stories and fantasies.

The writer’s conference is Sept. 20-21. People interested can register at the door and choose to attend one or both days. High school and college students receive half-off conference registration with a valid school ID.

The workshops will be held at Beale Street Celebrations, 201 Fourth St.

To register or for more information on the sessions visit https://www.kingmankabam.org/register.html.