Meet the Odyssey Poetry Contest Judges

Today, we get to meet the fabulous judges for the Odyssey Poetry Contest. I must say, I’ve never seen a group of judges that’s so diverse! What brilliant and talented people they are, ranging from horror, to religious, to children’s writing. So read, soak up the creative vibes these people give, and enjoy!

Michael R. CollingsMICHAEL R. COLLINGS is a Professor Emeritus at Seaver College, Pepperdine University, where he directed the Creative Writing Program for over two decades.

He has published over 100 volumes of poetry, novels, short fiction, and scholarly studies of such contemporary writers as Stephen King, Orson Scott Card, Dean R. Koontz, and Piers Anthony. Recent works include: The Art and Craft of Poetry (1996, 2009); In the Void: Poems of Science Fiction, Myth and Fantasy, and Horror (2009); Writing Darkness (2012); and A Verse to Horror: An Abecedary of Monsters and the Monstrous (2012)—the latter two being finalists for the 2012 Horror Writers Association Bram Stoker Award® for non-fiction and poetry respectively.

He has served as Guest of Honor, Scholar Guest of Honor, Poet Guest of Honor, and Special Guest at a number of science fiction, fantasy, and horror conferences, including HorrorFest ’89, Brigham Young University’s ‘Life, the Universe, and Everything,” World Horror Con 2008, and World Horror Con 2012. He has been an invited panelist on over 60 convention panels dealing with topics as disparate as Stephen King, the role of religion in science fiction, and the nature of horror poetry.

His work can be found at Collings Notes.


PicMichaelYoungMichael Young is a graduate of Brigham Young University with a degree in German Teaching and a minor in Music. He puts his German to good use teaching online German courses for High School students. Though he grew up traveling the world with his military father, he now lives in Utah with his wife, Jen, and his two sons. Michael enjoys acting in community theater, playing and writing music and spending time with his family. He played for several years with the handbell choir Bells on Temple Square and is now a member of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

He is the author of the novels THE CANTICLE KINGDOM, THE CANTICLE PRELUDE and THE LAST ARCHANGEL. He is also the author of the inspirational pamphlet PORTRAIT OF A MOTHER, a contributor to the anthology PARABLES FOR TODAY, the co-author of VOICES IN YOUR BLOOD and the author of several web serials through His most recent work is SING WE NOW OF CHRISTMAS, an anthology of short stories with the proceeds going to charity. He has also had work featured in various online and print magazines such as Mindflights, Meridian, The New Era, Allegory, and Ensign.

His work can be found at Mike


Sandra Tayler


Sandra Tayler is a writer of essays, speculative fiction, children’s fiction, picture books, and blog entries. Her blog One Cobble at a Time won the 2009 Association for Mormon Letters award for online writing. Her speculative fiction stories have appeared in several anthologies and her second picture book will be Kickstarted later this year. Someday in the future Sandra hopes to experience this free time that she has heard so much about.

Sandra can be found online at One Cobble at a Time and Twitter.