Sunday, February 3, 2008

Love Is Murder

I just got back from the 10th Love Is Murder convention in Rosemont, Illinois and it was great!

I got to see Lee Child for the first time and thought he was charming, down-to-earth and actually quite funny.

There were panels on Snagging Agents, Characters, Hooks (not the pirate kind), Writing Amateur Sleuths, Historical Mysteries and Marketing, just to name a few. Once again, I attended and loved the 'Novelists' Boot Camp' given by Todd Stone with very useful comments thrown in by his wife, Terri.

I would have to say that the highlight of the conference was the 'Stump the Stars' trivia game held last night.

The contestants: the lovely Tess Gerritsen, the kind-hearted William Kent Krueger , the perfectly English gentleman Lee Child, the delightfully southern Carolyn Haines and the insanely good-looking Barry Eisler.

They sat in five chairs facing the audience.

Our host: J.A. Konrath - the only way I can describe him is "hysterically funny". Like, you will wet your pants kind of funny - and I nearly did.

They gave him a microphone though he did not need one.

The scorekeeper: Robert W. Walker. (The scoring itself was a hoot! Caroline was given a 1,000 point lead because she was from Alabama and Barry Eisler had points taken off because he’s so handsome and a crowd favorite…)

The game: J.A. Konrath read a line from one of their novels and the author of that novel had to raise their hand and then name the title of the book and give a little info. about the plot.

If you haven't seen this, you would think it to be too easy and it would not be entertaining.

I have got to tell you, that was not the case at all.

J.A. Konrath would read a line and then five blank faces stared at us. Once or twice, Caroline Haines raised her hand and Konrath would say, "Are you guessing it's yours because nobody else is raising their hand?"
And she would nod!

Oh, this was absolutely fantastic and so much fun.

Favorite Line of the Weekend: Everybody slung jokes left and right, backwards and forwards, even the audience threw out a few chestnuts here and there – then Robert Walker called out to us, “You guys are out-Konrathing Konrath!”

Karen Syed, Jennifer Turner, and Morgan Mandel sat with a few of us after their panel this morning and answered every question we had concerning marketing and promotion. These ladies sure went the extra mile! They were so giving of their time, it makes you proud to be a writer.

Whether you’ve never been to Love Is Murder or were sitting next to me this weekend – GO NEXT YEAR!

You’ll have a blast.