Monday, April 30, 2012

Malice Domestic Conference

I returned last night from the Malice Domestic Conference in Bethesda, MD. This is a conference for fans of the cozy type of mystery novels. The guest of honor was Jan Burke shown below being interviewed by Dan Stashower.

Elizabeth Peters received the Amelia Award and is shown here signing.

Parnell Hall dressed up as one of Elizabeth Peters’s characters and is here with fellow Rocky Mountain Mystery Writers of America author Beth Groundwater and me.

A few snippets from speakers:
- Dana Cameron stated that she “gives herself a chance to try something new.”
- Lee Goldberg is an advocate of e-publishing but warns that it can be too easy for unedited books to become a “Tsunami of swill.”
- Donna Andrews advocates “research by wandering around.”
- Margaret Maron stated that “needed killing was a very good defense in North Carolina.”
- One speaker said, “The difference between a writer and an author is perseverance.”
- In describing the interest in paranormal mysteries, one author indicated, “Everyone wants a little magic in their lives.”
- Luci Zahray, know as the Poison Lady, gave a talk on alcohol poisoning.  A chronic alcoholic if cut off from alcohol will die and needs about four days to go through a detoxification process to avoid death.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Library Event

Last Friday I participated in the Longmont Library Festival Authors Open House. It was a terrific gathering of Colorado authors, including fiction, nonfiction and poetry writers. I had an opportunity to visit with old friends, meet new people and sell a few books. Two attached pictures. The first picture is of members of the Rocky Mountain Chapter of Mystery Writers of America: Mario Acevedo, Bob Spiller, Chris Jorgensen, Michelle Black, Barbara Steiner and me. The second picture shows authors Linda Berry and Ann Ripley, both excellent mystery writers.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Break from Writing

I took a break from writing for an extended weekend to visit two of our grandkids. I had four days of playing with trucks, cars and trains; taking walks; hunting for feathers and shells; pitching baseballs; reading stories; and telling stories. Come to think about it, all good things to inspire me now that I’m back home and returning to my writing schedule.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Left Coast Crime Conference

I had the pleasure of attending the Left Coast Crime Conference in Sacramento last week. In addition to being on two panels, I had the opportunity to introduce twenty-four new mystery writers whose first mystery novel was published in 2011. Award winners included Donna Andrews, The Real Macaw, for the Lefty Award for best humorous mystery; Ann Parker, Mercury’s Rise for best historical mystery; Kelli Stanley, City of Secrets, for best novel set in California; and Darrell James, Nazareth Child, for best first mystery novel. A few sound bites: Jacqueline Winspear, guest of honor – a first draft is clay on the wheel; during a panel on forensics one of the panelists called the CSI effect “tricknology;” Elle Lothlorien described the publishing cycle through Amazon as four weeks compared to the over one year for traditional publishing; one panelist described receiving, “rave rejections;” one reader gave me a geezer line: “I may be over the hill, but I’m not under it.” Next year's conference will be in Colorado Springs.