Wednesday, October 12, 2011


The Bloody Addiction Story

“Hello, my name is Caro and I am a Bloody Words addict.”


I founded the conference in 1999 and have been working on it ever since, in spite of efforts to pull myself away. And I tried. I really did. But somehow here I am, still toiling away, although mostly behind the scenes, still talking about upcoming possibilities in spite of my best efforts. And I confess. I love it. I love my addiction. Not as much a chocolate, but close.

So what’s new in BW Land? Bloody Words is coming back to Toronto! Oh. You know that already. Did you know the spotlight this time is on thrillers? Did you know that our Guests of Honour, Linwood Barclay and Gayle Lynds, showcase the two faces of thrillers; the edge of your seat oh-god-don’t-let-them-hurt-my-kid/husband/wife/family sort, and the oh-god-the-world-as-we-know-it-is-about-to-explode-and-all-our-hopes-are-on-that-one-intrepid-ex-soldies/spy/black ops person? Macro thrillers and micro thrillers, as our thrilling chair Cheryl Freedman likes to call them. Oh. You know that too. Obviously you are a well informed lot and have been reading mystery blogs for a while now. Most of you have probably attended Bloody Words at some time or another. If you are really savvy, you are coming to BW XII. There will be a lot going on there that you do not know about. And I’m not telling. Just let me mention a crime scene to examine, a culprit arrested, a chance to be on a jury… There. Enough clues. Or maybe red herrings.

One more exciting thing that will be happening at Bloody Words in 2012, the presentation of our shiny new award for light mysteries, affectionately known as the Boney Blithe, for books that make you smile. Let me repeat; books that make you smile. And the winner will smile when he or she receives our beautiful trophy and the thousand dollar checque that goes with it. You might think that publishers would know that this rules out noir mysteries, heavy cop stories, mysteries without a hint of lightness. Judging by a few of the books we are getting they must think the judges are more bitter and twisted than they actually are. So if you have a light mystery published this year or about to be published, send them along. ( We all want to smile!

Sometimes I think our conference is like the Little Engine that Could. We started small at the Arts and Letters Club and have now more than doubled in size. I wanted the conference to move around so everyone would have access to what we offer and the con has so far managed to get twice to Ottawa and this year all the way to Victoria, BC. I think I can, I think I can, I think I can…get to Halifax? That is what I want to see next. From sea to shining sea and all that. There is a whisper on the wind that mystery fans might be interested in going to a Bloody Words in the resort hotel on Oak Island, a place shrouded in legends and mysteries of its own. To swing this we need about a half dozen people in Halifax or the vicinity to spearhead the committee. The rest of the committee could be part of the old Toronto gang or a board member to lend experience and pull together things that need not be done in situo. So Mystery Maven readers, would you go to a resort hotel on Oak Island for a good old fashioned down home east coast Bloody Words? What say you, maties? Arrrgg! It’s an addiction, I tell you!

Caro Soles is the founder of Bloody Words and an author whose work includes mystery and science fiction, as well as gay erotica under a nom de plume. She also edits anthologies, does manuscript evaluations and teaches writing at George Brown College in Toronto. In her spare time, she takes in rescued dachshunds to foster for Canadian Dachshund Rescue, which accounts for her being barking mad from time to time. Email:


  1. I'd love to attend a Bloody Words in Halifax, one of my favourite cities in Canada! Hopefully there will be a core group of volunteers that can get it kick-started. Six of us got the ball rolling for the first BW held in Ottawa. Once you have someone willing to get it started, it seems a whole lot of people want to join in. I'll be the first to register!

  2. Oak Island? Sign me up immediately. Meanwhile I'm looking forward to BW in Toronto. It's always a great con.

  3. I don't know if I could get to Halifax but would love to attend BW in Toronto or Ottawa!!

  4. I'm looking forward to Toronto but Oak Island or at least Halifax would be splendid. I don't suppose there are enough mystery writers in Newfoundland to hold it there one of these years. BW is an annual June event that is a must for mystery writers and fans and we can all thank Caro for her vision and obsession.

  5. Oak Island? Absolutely! Easterners love a good yarn, and I'll bet there are plenty willing to lend a hand. No need to be a writer, just a mystery lover. The writers will come!

  6. Either Halifax or Oak Island would be enough to reel me in! What terrific locations. The suspense will probably kill me now.

  7. I have been looking for an excuse to go to Nova Scotia! Road trip anyone?!

    I am a price-sensitive Con-attender, but with almost 1 1/2 years notice, I could start saving now! Hint, hint, hint to possible down east Bloody Words organizers. Ask us, and we shall come! Susan

  8. Already signed up for Toronto and absolutely PUMPED that we might get to Oak Island!!! We can do it! Road trip, train trip, plane trip...or if I have to walk, I'm gonna get there just the same...