Thursday, September 28, 2006

Bouchercon, Day I

Well, I dove right into my Bouchercon experience with a panel in the first slot at 12 noon. The topic was "Creating the Mood with Pacing and Suspense." Suzanne Arruda was the moderator, and my fellow panelists were Hope McIntyre, Steven Sidor, and CJ Songer. Here's the group:

We were quite a diverse set of authors, but I thought the discussion was interesting (except when I put my oar in) and first-time moderator Suzanne did a very nice job of keeping us on track and synthesizing all the comments into some coherent themes. Despite the early time, we actually had a full room of people. I'm all done with panels for the conference, but as Suzanne said, sometimes it's good to "swallow the bullfrog" and get it over with quickly.

After the panel we went up to the signing area in the dealer room. This gentlemen, whose name I didn't get, has the distinction of receiving the first signed copy of the first edition of Candy. If you're wondering about the puzzled looks on both our faces, we are both trying to remember what day it is so I can include the date with my signature!

If you look closely at this next picture, you can see me stamping a first edition of The Immortal Game with my Chinese "chop". It's a transliteration of my name in Chinese characters and I often add it to my signature when I do in person signings for individuals. It's just a way of making the signature a little more distinctive.

Here's what it looks like on the page (although I always have to ask my wife, who is Chinese, whether or not I have the image right side up or not): Across the way in the signing room Craig Johnson--my pal from the LA Book Festival--was really packing them in:

After the signing, my wife and I went to grab a late lunch. We found these pink Wisconsin cows along State Street and I had to ham it up with one of them:

particularly because--well before I sold Candy from Strangers to Wisconsin publisher Bleak House Books--I inserted a crack about people from Wisconsin and dairy cows in the first chapter. Now they must be coming back to haunt me like pink elephants haunt drunks.

Next post: the scoop on the Bleak House Books / Crimescene Magazine party this evening.


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