Monday, October 18, 2010

The Party's Over.

I've been silent for a while because I've been at Bouchercon--the World Mystery Convetnion, which was held only a few miles from me in San Francisco this weekend. Bouchercon is one of those enormous conventions that takes place all over the USA, sometimes in Canada or even in UK. (I'm waiting for Australia next!). And brings in writers, publishers, reviewers and readers from all over the world. There was a good British contingent--note I say British, not English, because Val McDermid and Denise Mina would kill me. There was Irish representation and even Icelandic.

The local guest of honor was Laurie R. King, of Mary Russell fame. The international guest of honor was Denise Mina from Scotland and Lee Child was given a distinguished contribution to the genre honor. Lee brought with him not only members of his family--brother Andrew with lovely new wife Tasha Alexander, and niece Dana, but four Jack Reacher lookalikes for his Reachers Creatures party on Friday night. Imagine four buff guys, all six foot five and wearing tight Tshirts! That and the Dove bars in hospitality were highlights for me (okay, I'm shallow). Lee and Laurie were ominpresent, always with time to chat to everyone and epitomizing how generous and welcoming the mystery comunity is.

Other highlights were my non-panel--billed as a conversation with 3 goddesses (Louise Penny, Deborah Crombie and moi) It is so easy to chat with them, especially as they are two of my favorite writers and the audience seems to enjoy our completely unscripted chats; then applauding my blogmate, fellow Jungle Red Writer Hank Phillippi Ryan, as she won best short story on her birthday.

This picture is from our last goddess conversation. I'm still waiting for someone to send me the pictures that were taken this time. Oh, and I'm so glad I didn't wear the same jacket!

These conventions seem to turn into non-stop eating and drinking. Hi, how are you? let's grab a coffee. let's do breakfast tomorrow... let's have a drink at the bar to catch up. No wonder the line in the ladies room was always so long.  It was good to catch up with so many friends I hadn't seen in a while. All I had to do was stand at the bottom of the escalator and the whole world came to me! My one disappointment was missing my look-alike twin Meg Chittenden. She was supposed to attend but instead was rushed to hospital with clots in her lung. I hope she felt the love we all sent her.

So I realize I've given the scoop on a convention without one single piece of dirt to dish. The reason for this is that I was away for the juicy bits. I didn't stay in the convention hotel as I live just across the Bay--so I missed out on the fun late night stuff (memo to self--don't to that again. Lost half the fun). Also I was whisked across the Bay to the booksellers convention in Oakland to attend their author reception and sign books for my Royal Spyness publisher so I couldn't attend that publisher's party. I did attend the Minotaur party and stood between my favorite ancient Romans Lindsay Davies and Steven Saylor, and the Touchstone release party for their new serial novel. 

And now it's the day-after-Christmas feeling and I'm looking through the program and noting all the people I never saw in four days. It's always that way. Back to reality and laundry.


  1. Reading this brought back all the great memories :)

  2. This was my first Bouchercon ~ and it was terrific. You've captured the emotion perfectly by describing it as "the day-after-Christmas feeling" when it ended. I stayed a while longer, since I wanted to visit friends who live in SF, and do some sight-seeing. The hotel atmosphere was so depressing after it was over. It went by too quickly!
    I saw the CBS Sunday clip about Lee Child @ Bcon ~ if you haven't seen it yet, here's the link:
    Glad you had an enjoyable time. I hope to attend next year at St. Louis. Like you said ~ back to reality & laundry for now!