Bestselling Author, Craft Teacher Robert Dugoni to Present at 2020 Festival of Books

Seattle Writer has Sold More Than 5 Million Books

Robert Dugoni, a highly successful thriller novelist and writing craft teacher, has been confirmed as a presenter for the 2020 South Dakota Festival of Books.

The New York Times bestselling author will appeal to both suspense novel enthusiasts and aspiring writers who attend the 2020 Festival: he's sold more than five million books and teaches a novel writing course from his home in Seattle. Dugoni is also a prominent speaker who conducts writing workshops at various events including the annual Thrillerfest in New York, where he's appeared in the lineup along with other big names in the thriller/mystery industry such as John Sandford and R.L. Stine.

"We are excited to bring in an author of Dugoni's expertise and versatility; as a presenter, he will pull double duty by not only discussing his books but also teaching the craft of writing," said Jennifer Widman, director of the Festival of Books, which will be held Oct. 2-4 in Brookings.

The event, which began in 2003, annually features authors and illustrators participating in readings, lectures, panel discussions and book signings. South Dakota's premier annual literary gathering, the Festival also features more than 40 exhibitors and draws more than 5,000 session attendees, with an additional 4,000 students meeting children's/YA authors and illustrators.

Dugoni will conduct at least one writing workshop during the 2020 Festival. Run by the nonprofit South Dakota Humanities Council and funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities and corporate and individual donations, the literary gathering offers professional writing workshops and events to all levels of readers and writers; most events are free. Minimal fees are charged for workshops and special events to cover costs.

Dugoni joins a burgeoning list of big-name thriller authors recently featured at the Festival to appeal to the growing demographic of readers gravitating toward the genre; New York Times bestselling mystery/thriller author Heather Graham, who has 75 million books in print, appeared at the 2019 Festival of Books in Deadwood. Other presenters have included C.J. Box, Jeffrey Deaver, J.A. Jance and Anne Perry.

Bestselling author Robert Dugoni will appear at the 2020 South Dakota Festival of Books.

About Robert Dugoni

Dugoni is one of many authors to find success in other fields before becoming a professional writer. Growing up in Idaho, Dugoni wanted to be a writer from a young age. After graduating from Stanford University, he worked briefly at the Los Angeles Times before attending and graduating from the UCLA School of Law.

A San Francisco attorney until 1999, he quit his law practice to write novels, moving to Seattle on his wedding anniversary to pursue his dream. Dugoni worked in an 8 x 8-foot windowless office in Seattle's Pioneer Square where he completed three novels, two of which won the 1999 and 2000 Pacific Northwest Writers Association Literary Contests. However, it was his non-fiction expose, "The Cyanide Canary," that kickstarted his career. Published in 2004 by Simon and Schuster, the true story chronicled the investigation, prosecution, and aftermath surrounding an environmental crime in Soda Springs, Idaho. It was a Washington Post Best Book of the Year, and the Idaho Book of the Year.

The New York Times, No. 1 Wall Street Journal and No. 1 Amazon bestselling author of The Tracy Crosswhite series, The Charles Jenkins series and the David Sloane series, Dugoni has sold more than five million books since 2013; two of his novels have been optioned for television. He is also the author of the best-selling standalone novel, "The 7th Canon," a 2017 finalist for the Mystery Writers of America Edgar Award for best novel.

He is the recipient of the Nancy Pearl Award for Fiction and the Friends of Mystery Spotted Owl Award for the best novel in the Pacific Northwest.

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