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Bruce Most named CAL's 2022 Lifetime Achievement Award Winner!

Bruce Most 2013 close up

By Doug Hawk

Congratulations to long-time CAL member and past CAL President Bruce Most for being selected to receive CAL’s prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award.

Bruce joined Colorado Authors’ League in 1979, and his contributions to the organization cannot be over-looked or minimized. Beginning immediately after joining, Bruce spent many years serving on the CAL Board, holding positions as president, vice president, historian, and several terms as the CAL Awards chair. Back in the days when CAL held monthly luncheons, summer picnics and the annual Awards Banquet, Bruce was always present, always involved and always willing to do what needed to be done.

Bruce has had an enormous impact on CAL well beyond his active participation on the board and his long writing career. He is a friend to all. He interacts with other writers on an honest and open basis and is an unwavering voice for reason, unity and inclusion. Always available to offer advice and encouragement, Bruce is frequently the first to greet a new member, quick to introduce them to others in the organization and never disparages or belittles another writer’s efforts. 

Bruce is one of those courageous writers who built his career as a freelancer without the benefit of a “day job”. Following his stint in the U.S. Army as a public information writer stationed in Alaska, he immediately began working as a freelance writer. A stranger to the corporate environment, Bruce spent his career working from his home office. He was editor of the Journal of Financial Planning, a publication of the Financial Planning Association. In that capacity, he wrote more than a thousand articles on a wide variety of topics within the arena of consumer financial planning. Subsequently, many of these pieces were included in The Encyclopedia of Financial Planning.

Additionally, during his career Bruce freelanced articles to national magazines including Parade, TV Guide, Popular Science, Popular Mechanics, Travel & Leisure and American Way. It was to the latter that he sold a profile of past CAL President and long-time member the late Clive Cussler. He also ghost wrote the self-help book, THE POWER OF CHOICE, an opportunity that arose from his connections as a CAL member.

In the 1990s, Bruce published two well-received mystery novels, BONDED FOR MURDER and MISSING BONDS, featuring tough-as-iron bail bonds-woman Ruby Dark. His 2015 mystery novel, ROPE BURN, received high praise as well as a CAL Award for best genre novel as did MURDER ON THE TRACK, his first Joe Stryker mystery novel set in post-World War II Denver. It was followed by a sequel, THE BIG DIVE. In addition to his novels, three of his nonfiction articles were recognized for CAL Awards. 

Besides his CAL membership, Bruce is a long-time member of the Rocky Mountain Chapter of the Mystery Writers of America. 

On his website, Bruce has a particularly insightful observation: “Writers without readers is like wine without alcohol.”

Bruce will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award at CAL’s annual awards ceremony on June 19th.

2022 People's Choice Cover Design Contest Winners announced

The Namer of Spirits

The Namer of Spirits by Todd Mitchell got the most votes in the Juvenile category.

Asur Misoa did the cover art for the book and Milorad Savanovic did the cover title font design.

You can find Asur Misoa on Instagram

Whispers for Terra

Whispers For Terra was the winner in the YA/Adult category.

It was designed by Claudia Edwards who combined elements from two photos taken by Mo Dedrick. 

Attention Book Illustrators and Cover Designers!

Colorado Authors League has long been about the business of storytelling, and now we’re opening our membership to include those who tell stories through art!

Book Illustrators and Cover designers, we invite you to apply for membership and take advantage of the rich benefits that CAL provides its members from friendship to promotion

to a chance to win your very own CAL award for Illustration or Cover Design!

We want to promote your work, click HERE to see just one of the ways.

In the spotlight: Becky Clark

I came to the writing game kind of late. It never occurred to me as a kid that I could write books. I was an avid reader, but as God is my witness, I did not make the connection that a real person was behind each of my beloved Nancy Drews. (As an adult, I’m real-life friends with someone who wrote some of those and her name is not Carolyn Keene which would have blown my widdle mind.)

When my kids were very young, I had a home daycare. In an effort to keep my brain from turning to mush, at naptime I’d race to my Mac Classic with the postage-stamp-sized screen and tap out personal essays a la Erma Bombeck. On a whim, I sent one off to a magazine and they sent me back $50. I was hooked.

My kids were always avid readers and we had regular trips to the library, toting home an obscene number of books each time. But one time my son was disappointed to find he’d read all the historical fiction for kids. I helped him search, but he was right … he’d read it all. As we were leaving, he looked up at me with plaintive eyes. “Why don’t you just write one, Mom?”

So I did.

That was in 2001 and I was hooked again.

In addition to this middle grade historical fiction, I wrote a middle grade time travel romp that I describe as “Quantum Leap meets Peabody and Sherman.” I wrote a YA mystery series with a synesthetic main character who was in the marching band and tasted music. I wrote some middle grade and YA standalones, one of which I’ll revisit and republish in the adult mystery realm because it’s a fictionalized version of my grandmother’s story that I want to explore further.

But I left the kidlit world behind me and have been happily ensconced in the adult mystery genre ever since. I’m firmly in the hybrid author universe, publishing mysteries both traditionally and independently. At this time I have two Dunne Diehl novels, three Crossword Puzzle Mysteries, and four Mystery Writers Mysteries. I’m working on a new 15-book (!!) crossover series featuring the mother of my protagonist in my Mystery Writers series. Overzealous? Perhaps. Fun? Absolutely.

I also have some nonfiction under my belt: some cookbooks, a guide for parents to help their reluctant readers advance and enjoy reading more, and a book about my writing process, EIGHT WEEKS TO A COMPLETE NOVEL—WRITE FASTER, WRITE BETTER, BE MORE ORGANIZED, which was lucky enough to win the prestigious Colorado Authors League 2021 Award of Excellence, something I’m supremely proud of.

So, when someone says, “Why don’t you just write one?” go ahead and say yes.

If you’re interested in sampling my funny mysteries, I have FICTION CAN BE MURDER downloadable for free at

CAL Racks Expand From One To Three!

Support these businesses that support CAL

5670 N. Academy Blvd

Colorado Springs


Located in the

Colorado Mills Mall

14500 W. Colfax Avenue

Lakewood, CO

Located in The Farm sporting complex

2660 Vickers Dr.

Colorado Springs

Third Space Rack
Perfect Gift book rack
Acme Bar & Grill rack

Nowhere near our book racks?

You can still find great books by CAL authors. Check out our Genre Pages.

Autographed books make a great gift year-round. Contact authors directly to get signed copies.

Congratulations To CAL Members Who Are Colorado Book Award Finalists

Winners to be announced July 25

For the complete list go to Colorado Humanities

Bats, Bandits & Buggies

Juvenile Literature

Bats, Bandits & Buggies

by Nancy Oswald

The Night of Many Endings


Khyven the Unkillable

by Todd Fahnestock

The Night of Many Endings


Magic and Misrule

by K. M. Merritt

The Night of Many Endings


Canyonlands Carnage

by Scott Graham

The Night of Many Endings


Red Rabbit OnThe Run

by Jodi Bowersox

The Night of Many Endings

General Fiction

The Night of Many Endings

by Melissa Payne

Our own CAL Awards finalists will be announced later in May.

CAL Authors Release New Books!

Visions of Recurrence

The next generation's exciting adventure.

Find it on Amazon

A little troll goes for a stroll.

How will she get home?

Get it on Amazon


He’ll double-cross you, bed your wife, and steal your gold, all with a smile.

Buy it on Amazon

More Precious Than Gold

Four friends discover an old tale of murder and forbidden love which leads to a modern-day treasure hunt.

Check it out on Amazon

Skullingtons -Skeletons in the closet

The Skullingtons learn to make bedtime a fun time!

Find it on Amazon

Sheer Misfortune

A gym membership turns deadly.

Check it out on Amazon

To Serve and Protect

This pup fills in when the family's military dad is deployed.

Buy it on Amazon

The Reluctant Ninja

It's never too late

Find it on Amazon

Lipstick Covered Magnet

A cozy mystery packed with more tricks than a street magician.

Buy it on Amazon

Hot Diggity Dog

A sizzling collection of 65 brat, hot dog, and sausage recipes for all occasions.

Check it out on Amazon

Walk Off

Avoiding the snakes & pitfalls on the way to healthy love.

Buy it on Amazon

Lipstick Covered Magnet

Jack has a brutal murder to solve.

If he can stay alive long enough to do it.

Check it out on Amazon

Walk Off

One of baseball's great untold stories.

Buy yours today!

Lipstick Covered Magnet

She's running from her past.

He's trying to become her present.

Get it on Amazon

California Disasters

Major catastrophic events from pre-statehood to the 21st century.

Check it out on Amazon

And Publish Plays, Essays, Articles, and Poems!


Kathryn Winograd's essay "Floating"

was published in River Teeth: A Journal of Nonfiction Narratives.

Lou Dean, Closer To Heaven

Lou Dean's article "Closer To Heaven" was published in Guideposts.

Watch the Video



Art Goodtimes has two poems in Kinship: Belonging in a World of Belonging, a five-volume series published last year in Chicago by the Center for Humans & Nature.

Gregory SETH Harris's short story "First, the Clowns" was published in LIGHTWOOD


CAL Awards

Submissions are now closed for the 2022 Awards!

Submission period: Nov 1-Jan 31

Eligibility: You must be a CAL member to enter (See Membership tab above)

Categories: Multiple writing categories are judged from essays, articles, and poetry to full-length novels.

Categories also include illustration, cover design, and graphic novels.

2022 Awards announcements: May /June

Awards ceremomy: July

Awards Info

Joe Nigg

recipient of the 2021

Lifetime Achievement Award


Watch past Award Ceremonies

79th Annual CAL Writing Awards Video

hosted by Kevin and Jodi Bowersox

80th Annual CAL Writing Awards Video

hosted by Jody Pritzl

Recent Articles
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CAL Authors In Action

Upcoming Events
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Helping Students

In 2020, CAL members joined together to create Prompts For Young Writers, a book to inspire and launch great stories. Our authors also provided writing tips in the book available in both English and Spanish. To download this FREE Resource, Click here: Prompts Book.

Helping the Community

CAL authors often contribute to Little Free Libraries!

Little Library 2021

Where can I find CAL books?

CAL books are on GoodReads!

Click to find them all in one place!


REGISTER NOW for the 2022 Colorado Country Christmas Gift Shows in November.

The Colorado Springs booth will be held Nov. 4-6 at the Event Center.

The Denver booth will be held Nov. 11-13 at the Convention Center.

Read all about it and how you can participate here:

Christmas Booth

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