A week ago, the Left Coast Crime convention in Vancouver wound up for this year. After spending a few more days in the area, we travelled home, went back to work for a few days, and fought off the jet lag.
As expected, I truly enjoyed my experience at the convention. There were a larger number of participants than I had anticipated, from all different regions of North America, and even a few from across the pond. The panel subjects were varied, pertinent, and interesting.
I had two great takeaways from the 4 days I spent at LCC.
First of all, my fears and nervousness over participating in a panel were unnecessary. I was one of four panelists, along with a moderator, who discussed the subject of crafting twists and reveals in a novel. The subject matter was the easy part. As a suspense writer and reader, I understood what people were curious about, and with our moderator as our guide, the discussions carried on easily.
The part that worried me the most was that I was surrounded by award-winning, successful authors. As I should have known, they were all welcoming and very down-to-earth people. Thomas Perry was the most prolific writer of the panel with 26 novels to his credit, with many bestsellers. Harry Hunsicker boasts 7 novels so far. Rob Hart, our moderator, has co-written with James Patterson, and his to-be-released novel, The Warehouse, has been optioned for film by Ron Howard.
Last, but not least, was Ashley Dyer, a British writer, who writes under 3 pseudonyms (her real name is Margaret Murphy), and has published close to a dozen novels. I met her on Friday, and we shared a coffee together. She is a very gracious and warm person, who put me at ease while sharing some of her experiences. I was fortunate enough to get a copy of her latest novel, Splinter in the Blood (see review in the Book Review tab), and I consider it a great honor to have interacted with her on a few occasions over the weekend.
To summarize, as I’m sure you’ve figured out, I enjoyed serving on the panel, and it’s definitely something I would do again if the opportunity ever presents itself.
My second takeaway was that, as at Killer Nashville, the people you meet are worth their weight in gold. Whether it’s the person beside you at breakfast, sitting next to you at a panel session, or someone you meet in the elevator, so many of them have a story to tell or a snippet to share.
I left the convention inspired and motivated. I also left with a few more plans brewing in my head. We’ll have to see if any of them come to fruition.