Some highlights for me:
1. This morning, I had the fun of being interviewed for two minutes by Cindy Silverblatt, the Fan Guest of Honor. Using the parlance of the convention, she was a hoot! Amazingly enough, she engaged 26 debut authors with ease...and even stayed on task (although the author Barb Goffman's expert use of the stopwatch no doubt helped rein in the writers.). My new friend, Lynn Raimondo, author of the much acclaimed Dante's Wood, was also a part of this stellar group.
Moderated by the highly skilled James Lincoln Warren, I was accompanied by Susan Froetschel, Peg Herring, and Daniel Stashower, who each shared how they envisioned the "invisible" woman at the heart of their narrative.
(Daniel focused on the first [real] female detective in the Pinkerton Detective agency; Susan told the story of a much silenced Afghan woman, while Peg spoke from the perspective of a homeless person. I really can't wait to read all of these stories, and I'm hoping they will allow me to interview them on my blog.)
Well, it was meeting one of my literary idols, Charles Todd, or at least the female half of the famed mother-son writing team. I can only dream of collaborating with one of my own children as she and her son have done in writing their terrific books.
I had Caroline sign a book for my mother, and as she did, I mumbled something about how reading her stories helped inspire to find my way in historical fiction. I'm sure I made no sense, but she was very gracious and asked for my card.
(Inside, I was dancing around, thinking 'Maybe she will read my book!!!' but of course I was totally nonchalant. Well not really.)
But of course, some lessons were learned by yours truly:
One day, if I remember, I'll post a longer entry about what I've learned from attending these mystery conferences. For now, I'll just say:
- Don't leave your nametag in your room like I did, especially if you are a completely unrecognizable debut author!
- Bring your own books, in case your own books do not show up. (sigh...)
- However, people do care when unfortunate things happen. (The incredibly kind booksellers from Scene of the Crime books went and got a few copies for me, so I would have something to sign at the conference!)
- Being gracious and humble goes a long way, and being the opposite is, well, uncool.
Maybe I'll see you at Malice Domestic next year!