In today's blog, I list my six favorite Meetings, and I talk about my Moment as a panel moderator.
1) Sisters in Crime - I am a member of SinC. The professional writing group holds a breakfast at conferences like Bouchercon, Left Coast Crime, and Malice Domestic. The business meeting is a good excuse to meet in person the far flung members of this national group. I sat next to Verna Suit, who writes crossword puzzles for Mystery Scene Magazine.
2) Hallway - Even though I knew many Colorado authors were attending Bouchercon, we do not travel together like a herd of elk. I was delighted when I ran into R. T. Lawton and his wife Kiti in the Marriott Hotel between workshops. R. T. has published nearly 100 short stories, a third of them in Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine.
3) Short Mystery Fiction Society - The short story is catching on. Again. Once a popular art form with many outlets, the mystery short story had fallen on hard times as magazines folded and reader interest faded. That has changed. One proof of the revival of the never-really-gone short story was attendance at the SMFS lunch at Bouchercon. I met with Judy Penz Sheluk and several other SMFS members. We walked to the Plaza Café, a small Indian deli. As I got in line, I met author Pamela De Voe. We would be on a panel the next day. Forty plus people attended the lunch, where Art Taylor had us introduce ourselves (including a few non-SMFS deli customers who played along). When I told Terrie Farley Moran I was a fan, she happily autographed her newest story in Ellery Queen Magazine.
5) Fan-girl - I played room monitor for the Choose Your Voice panel. My friend and author Patricia Coleman discussed with other panelists how authors decide whether to write in first, second, or third person. After the panel, I noticed Chris Roerden, author of writing craft book Don't Murder Your Mystery, in the audience. I had the chance to tell her how helpful her book was for improving my mystery writing skills.
6) Starbucks - What's a writing conference without a trip to a coffee shop? I met with Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine editor Linda Landrigan in the Marriott Starbucks. Linda has published four of my mystery short stories in AHMM. I had met Linda in person at two other conferences, but this was my first chance for a one-on-one chat. By the way, my story Industrial Gray is in the current issue (December - with the boat dock on the cover) available in many bookstores now.
I enjoyed my Bouchercon 2015 adventure. Now I'm going to hide in my writer's cave and get some work done!