LESLIE LEYLAND FIELDS is a writer, national speaker, workshop leader and professional editor who lives on Kodiak Island, Alaska in the winter and Harvester Island in the summer, where she works in commercial salmon fishing with her family. She has written/edited 10 nonfiction books of memoir and essays on a variety of subjects: on wilderness, the spirituality of food, forgiveness, commercial fishing, and parenting. Her books have been translated into German, Chinese, Polish, French, Korean and Ukrainian. Her award-winning essays have appeared in the Atlantic Monthly, Orion, Best Essays Northwest, Beliefnet and many others. She is a popular radio guest, and has spoken on more than 200 radio shows across the country.

She loves to travel, and spent several years trekking around the world. She still travels often, leaving Kodiak to speak at conferences, retreats, and universities around the country. In 2013, she founded the Harvester Island Wilderness Workshop at her remote fish camp island off Kodiak Island, attracting writers from around the country and internationally. She also teaches workshops and seminars through Writing for Your Life and hosts workshops in various other locales around the country. 

Leslie holds three graduate degrees in Creative Nonfiction, English and Journalism, and has taught for many years in both undergraduate and graduate programs in Oregon, Alaska and Washington.


Vermont writer MATTHEW DICKERSON is the author of several works of fiction and non-fiction in a variety of genres. His most recent creative works include: a medieval historical novel titled The Rood and the Torc a three-volume fantasy novel beginning with The Gifted and The Betrayed; and a pair narrative non-fiction books on nature, ecology, trout, and fly-fishing titled Trout in the Desert: on Fly Fishing Human Habits, and the Cold Waters of the Arid Southwest and Downstream: Reflections on Brook Trout, Fly Fishing, and the Waters of Appalachia (co-authored with David O’Hara.) Dickerson is also an well-known scholar of fantasy literature.  He is the author or co-author of several books, chapters, and essays on the writings of J.R.R.Tolkien and C.S.Lewis and the co-author of From Homer to Harry Potter: a Handbook of Myth and Fantasy.  He is a professor at Middlebury College in Vermont and for twelve years as the Director of the New England Young Writers Conference at Breadloaf. You can learn more about Matthew Dickerson and his writing at and