I'm sharing this first picture because I spent so much of the time with wonderful friends, beginning with dinner on Wednesday night before the conference. Kris Neri is missing from this picture, but a lot of my time was spent with Chantelle Aimee Osman, author Kelli Stanley, and Kris. Here's Chantelle and Kelli at dinner.
|Chantelle and Kelli|
I kicked off the conference itself attending a program on Thursday morning called Left Coast Crime 101. I had been to LCC in Santa Fe, but I was right to think I might get some tips from Janet Rudolph, Bill Gottfriend, Toby Gottfried, and Brad Parks.
I attended a program called Jumping Genres: Writers Who Have Switched. It was moderated by Patricia Rice. Panelists were Dianne Emley, Yves Fey, C.T. Jorgensen, and Sharan Newman. Then, I was off to the panel I moderated, Juggling Characters: Writers with Multiple Mystery Series. It was fun to ask questions of Laura Bradford, Nancy Baker Jacobs, and Camille Minichino. We gave away books, and I finally met Laura, author of the Amish Mystery series. I headed to Bobbies vs. Mounties: A California Cop Mediates. Moderator Kathy Bennett really didn't need to intervene. Brenda Chapman, Ann Cleeves, Deborah Crombie and Louise Penny were terrific panelists. The last program I attended on Thursday was Toastmaster Brad Parks' interview with Sue Grafton. What a fun interview!
Dinner was at Fisherman's Wharf with friends. Good seafood, including calamari. And, then a fun end of the evening in the bar, where all mystery conferences seem to end every day. Noir in the Bar, with mystery authors reading from their novels, was quite an experience.
Even after a late evening, I was up bright and early on Friday to attend the "Meet the New Authors Breakfast." There were over forty new authors who had the chance to plug their new book for only a couple minutes.
I wish I had been close enough to get pictures of the next panel, but, after attending the breakfast I wasn't one of the early arrivals to the session. It was called "In the Beginning...Reminiscing", featuring Jan Burke asking questions of Sue Grafton and Marcia Muller. It was a fascinating panel for anyone interested in the early years when women were finally recognized in the mystery writing field in the U.S.
Manors & Manners: Murder Beyond Downton Abbey featured Catriona McPherson as moderator and Rhys Bowen, Carola Dunn, and G.M. Malliet.
|Catriona as moderator|
But, I made it on time to a panel featuring cozy mystery authors, A Taste for Murder. Daryl Wood Gerber also writes as Avery Aames. Nancy J. Parra is also Nancy Coco. Penny Warner moderated. Jenn McKinlay and Edith Maxwell rounded out the panel about food mysteries.
|Darryl, Nancy, Penny, Jen and Edith|
Haunted by Death, the next panel, was "On the Paranormal Side". Dianne Emley moderated the panel consisting of Juliet Blackwell (Hailey Lind), Molly MacRae, and Kris Neri. I finally met Molly MacRae, author of the Haunted Yarn Shop mysteries!
|Juliet, Dianne, Molly and Kris|
I like mysteries that feature journalists, so I headed to Extra! Extra! Journalists Turned Crime Novelists. Andrew E. Kaufman moderated. Panelists were Bruce DeSilva, Carla Norton and Brad Parks. It was a fascinating panel.
|Brad, Bruce, Carla and Andrew|
I was in the very back row of a crowded room for Social Media: Getting the Word out in Today's Digital Day, so there are no pictures. Jen Forbus moderated. Maddee James, August McLaughlin, Chantelle Aimee Osman and Janet Rudolph took on Twitter, Facebook, blogging, and Pinterest.
The International Guest of Honor, Louise Penny, was interviewed by her publisher from Minotaur Books, Andrew Martin. And, I wish I had taken notes from this remarkable interview, but it was moving and beautiful, and I just sat and absorbed it instead of writing. It was special.
After Friday's full day, I actually took Saturday off. Chantelle and I walked for four hours, stopping only for breakfast overlooking Monterey Bay. I took a break in the afternoon, and then the Awards Banquet actually went from 7:30 to 10:30 or so.
Most of my friends left very early Sunday morning stayed for the end of the conference. I went to the last panel, Voices in Our Heads: Our Protagonists & What They Do so I could hear Terry Shames. The panel was moderated by Peg Brantley. The other panelists were Donnell Ann Bell, Warren C. Easely, and Cathy Perkins.
|Peg, Donell, Warren, Cathy and Terry|
The reason I wanted to hear Terry? When I was at the Public Library Association conference (PLA), I discussed Terry's books when we each talked about an up-and-coming author. (Check out Terry's Samuel Craddock books, beginning with A Killing at Cotton Hill.)
And, I ended the conference on a wonderful note. First, a last short chat with Brad Parks. We seemed to run into each other throughout the conference.
|With Brad Parks|
We were both there for the final program. Marcia Muller and Bill Pronzini, the Lifetime Achievement Honorees were interviewed by Bette Golden Lamb and J.J. Lamb. Two remarkable authors.
|Marcia Muller and Bill Pronzini|
You may skip this if you want, but, I'm going to thank everyone that made this conference special for me - everyone I had a chance to talk to, some for quite a while, some just for a few minutes. (I know there were 800 people here, but I didn't talk to ALL of them.) I already thanked friends Chantelle Aimee Osman, Kelli Stanley, and Kris Neri. I also want to thank Margie and Mike Bunting. I enjoyed your company, and talking mysteries and books with you. I know I'm going to miss someone, but thanks to Mary Jane Maffini (as she said, another short librarian), Lou Berney, Cara Black (congratulations!), Dorothy Black Crow, Juliet Blackwell, Rhys Bowen, Susan M. Boyer, Laura Bradford, Robin Burcell (Thanks for asking me to moderate the panel. It was fun!), Kate Carlisle, Erika Chase, Marcia Clark, Ann Cleeves (Thank you for your kindness), Deborah Coonts, Deborah Crombie, Kendel Lynn, Jen Forbus, Daryl Wood Gerber, Christine Goff, Diana Gould, Timothy Hallinan, Libby Fischer Hellmann, Sara J. Henry, Nancy Baker Jacobs, Terry Jacobsen (Thanks for the advice!), Darrell James, Maddee James, Rae James, Craig Johnson, C.T. Jorgensen, Deborah J. Ledford, Con Lehane, Sophie Littlefield, Jess Lourey, Molly MacRae (and your delightful husband!), G.M. Malliet (who also has a kind husband), Jeanne Matthews, Edith Maxwell, Jenn McKinlay (Good luck! So good to see you!), Catriona McPherson (Congratulations! And, I can't wait to post that picture you photobombed), Camille Minichino, David Morrell, Carlene O'Neil (Good luck! I'll be waiting.), Gigi Pandian, Ann Parker, Brad Parks, Louise Penny (hugs and congratulations!), Barbara Peters (So good to see you!), Frederick Ramsay, Rob Rosenwald, L.J. Sellers, Terry Shames, Susan C. Shea, Jeffrey Siger, Rochelle Staab, Jeri Westerson, Ingrid Willis, and Simon Wood.
And, for all of those readers who said they read my blog, and enjoyed it, thank you. It's a pleasure to share books with you!