News, reviews and schmooze by and about Canadian mystery writers.
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
Two things struck me late last night. I hadn't yet finished packing for Malice Domestic. And secondly, when I tried to post and schedule a new blog, I found that the 'Blogger' format and system had changed! When did that happen? Sometime since Monday morning, apparently. That was the last time I was physically accessing the blog settings.
Why do they do that?! Especially when I don't have time to do a self-teaching session! So, I can eventually get into this space and write a blog but can I schedule a blog to be posted tomorrow, Friday or Monday? No! So, my apologies. While I'm away at Malice, the repeating blog will be by Joan Boswell, which I'm posting right before hitting the road in the morning. But it's a good blog and re-reading it may trigger some writing ideas. So that's a good thing. Nor can I get this Blogger to insert paragraphs! What's up?????
But back to my rant, especially since in the cold light of day, nothing has changed. This hasn't morphed back into the easy Blogger I grew into liking. Nor has my suitcase been miraculously filled and better still, proven able to be closed. I draw two conclusions from this -- I truly am a luddite when it comes to all things electronic (like that DVD player still in its box 5 months later) and now, Blogger.
Also, that I spend too much time fussing over what clothing to take to the conference. Of course, there are a variety of functions to attend over the weekend...and, a gal's got to have her shoes! But that's not the real focus of this conference. We all know that!
Malice Domestic, which takes place in Bethesda, MD from April 27-29th is the ultimate 'cosy' conference in the U.S. It's been running for decades -- in fact, it was the first mystery conference I ever attended back in 1989, its very first year. I haven't been there for ten years so I'm really looking forward to seeing old and new faces, and enjoying the changes in format. And there have been many, starting with the New Author's Breakfast this Saturday (7 a.m.!!) at which we'll each have a short 2-min. interview and then spend the rest of the time munching along with our tablemates, a mixture of readers and writers.
That's what Malice is all about. It's a terrific chance to meet the readers -- and boy, do they attend! -- and to get to know new colleagues, and meet with old friends. As part of the Killer Characters blogspot, we have a crossword puzzle planned with the prize, a year's supply of our books -- one a month from each of us to the lucky winner! That will be fun! And, then there are the panels. Mine is the Southern mysteries panel at 9:30 a.m. on Sat. and I'm on with some of my favourite authors. Then there's the Agatha Awards banquet that evening with two Canadians up for prizes -- Louise Penny for Best Novel, and Janet Bolin for Best First Novel. Fingers crossed!
The day after the conference, we'll be in Oakmont, PA for the Festival of Mystery. That's in it's 17th year and attracts between 300 & 400 readers to a spot where the 50+ authors are in signing mode. Once again, the newbies will have short interviews and then it's a reader-writer fest!
Needless to say, I'm really looking forward to all this and a chance to spend the weekend as Erika Chase! It will also be much fun getting there as we're driving the ten-hour route. That's R.J. Harlick, Vicki Delany, Janet Bolin and Erika. Can you imagine the laughter!
So, back to packing mode. And maybe I shouldn't worry about unpacking when we get home. After all, it's just a month until Canada's amazingly great mystery conference Bloody Words in Toronto.
Being a mystery author is a really hard job!
Linda Wiken/Erika Chase
A Killer Read
Berkley Prime Crime, now available
Read & Buried, coming Nov., 2012