Writers in Residence Program

Apache Junction Public Library is excited to be part of the Writer in Residence program, which offers encouragement, direction and feedback to local authors and provides opportunities for them to enhance their skills no matter where they find themselves on the path to publication. The Writer in Residence Program was made possible by the Arizona State Library, a division of the Secretary of State, with federal funds from the Institute of Museum and Library Services.

We’re happy to host a Writers in Residence Facebook group, where you can get encouragement and advice from our current Writer in Residence, as well as updates on upcoming programs and consultation times.

Our Current Writer In Residence, Lisa Schnebly Heidinger


Author and historian Lisa Schnebly Heidinger has been collecting and sharing Arizona stories since she began as a cub reporter for the Green Valley News in 1979. She’s moved up through the ranks through radio and news stations, newspapers and Arizona Highways, historical and university boards, and has become the author of ten books, with two in progress.

Lisa is available for virtual one-on-one consultations on Tuesdays, 1-3 p.m. and Saturdays, 9-11 a.m., beginning Tuesday, February 2. Please make an appointment by finding an open day and time on our calendar, or call 480-474-8555.

Lisa will be hosting three virtual programs. Please register by following the links below or call (480) 474-8555.

Research: The Good, the Bad, the Unexpected
February 23, 2:30 p.m.
Our Writer tracks her evolution in the world of research, from the horrors of her days as a university student to her present enthusiasm: “It’s the only thing that has ever made me forget to eat lunch.” Register Here

Sedona Schnebly: What I Learned, and What I Didn’t
March 23, 2:30 p.m.
Lisa Schnebly Heidinger spent decades digging into her great-grandmother’s life. She discusses the genealogy, surprise sources, disappointments and mysteries that went into creating The Journal of Sedona Schnebly. Register Here

Arizona: The Centennial That Almost Wasn’t
April 20, 2:30 p.m.
A member of the Centennial Foundation and Arizona Historical Advisory Commission Committee, Schnebly Heidinger traces what went right and wrong with the state’s 100th birthday – and the perilous journey of the official Centennial book. Register Here

Past Writers in Residence

Writers In Their Own Residence
In September and October of 2020, we welcomed five local Arizona authors to discuss aspects of their careers, craft, and knowledge in virtual sessions.

Valerie Ipson
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Our Summer 2020 Writer in Residence is an author of children, teen and adult fiction. Inevitably Ipson’s YA books are set in high school, and while it’s not something she ever wants to relive, she finds it a pretty chill experience writing through the fictional eyes of her main characters. In addition to penning picture books and novels, Ipson was a contributing writer and genealogy columnist for a regional newspaper until retiring after 17 years to write fiction fulltime. Currently she is finishing production on two picture books.

James L. Thane
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After graduating with a Ph.D., Jim became a history professor and wrote non-fiction and magazine and trade journal articles before returning to his first love – mystery writing. Thane cut his teeth on Erle Stanley Gardner, Ed Bain, and John McDonald and, in 2010, he published his first police procedural No Place to Die; set in Phoenix and featuring Sean Richardson. Accolades include “Engaging…hooks the audience…”, “A fast action thriller…” and “An excellent debut…” Jim then penned two additional Sean Richardson novels before switching his fictional locale from Phoenix to Montana’s Big Sky Country in his recently released novel Crossroads.