Do you know how much fun readers/fans/writers' conferences are? Combine that with the paradise that is Monterey/Pacific Grove/Carmel-by-the-sea and you really have something!
And while you're there, you can be among the first to see my new release!
(Note that my name tag at the convention will read "Denise Weeks/Shalanna Collins." I'm dual-boot like J. D. Robb/Nora Roberts and many, many other authors.)
I'll be attending Left Coast Crime (Calamari Crime) this year. At last, a family vacation of sorts combined with an opportunity to meet my editors in person, meet fans, and schmooze with other authors I've only known online. I am really stoked and looking forward to it.
The BIG NEWS is that we will be launching my new YA urban fantasy/adventure, APRIL, MAYBE JUNE! Even though it is not strictly a mystery, it has a mystery subplot. I'll be meeting up with Muse Harbor Press's Dave Workman, my editor on the project, and perhaps with others from the company. We have books, bookmarks, and tote bags to give away! I'll know more about the venue for this later on. It might even be held where we're staying--in a beach house!
I don't think that any of my books will make it to the list of nominees for the Lefty this year, but maybe next year. I hear that you should be fairly well-known, and I'm definitely not. Still, I voted in the awards. We'll see who makes the list.
The exciting part is that I'll be renting the aforementioned beach house for the week in Pacific Grove, about a mile away from the hotel. My family (hubby, Mama, Pomeranian, and probably one of my cousins who loves to sketch) will run around and have fun while I do the con, and then in the evenings I'll get to sightsee and visit the Aquarium and the beach. We haven't had a family vacation in YEARS. They are fighting me on it even as we speak, knowing how expensive it all is (and being a bunch of homebodies, except for the dog, who LOVES to travel, as if he were born with wheels), but I believe I can get them into the van and get us all there.
I hope to be on a panel or two. Even if I'm not, I will be available for meet-ups, book signings, and schmoozing. Watch for my totebags!
Here's the pertinent con info (that you could get from their site):
Starts - Thursday, March 20, 2014 11:00 AM
Ends - Sunday, March 23, 2014 02:00 PM
Where: Portola Hotel & Spa, Two Portola Plaza, Monterey, CA, USA
(This hotel is sold out, but they have an overflow hotel or two, including the Marriott)
Writing Workshop Wednesday, March 19 with Jan Burke & Jerrilyn Farmer
Would your family like to come along? There are events especially for them! *Because we know they don't want to hear about the things writers and readers like to blather on about.*
Whale Watching Tour Tuesday March 18, 2014 9:00 AM – Noon (I wish I could do this one!)
Monterey Movie Tour Tuesday, March 18, 2014 1:00 – 5:00 PM
National Steinbeck Museum Wednesday, March 19, 2014 9:00 AM – 2 PM (We'll hit the museum at some point, as well as the Henry Miller Library.)
Big Sur Scenic Tour Wednesday, March 19, 2014 1:00 – 5:00 PM (I may skip something so I can go on this with Hubby!)
There are also free events and activities, of course. There's a voluntary hike of about three miles that you can take, starting on the trail behind the Portola Spa. Or just walk along the beach!
I hope to see you there. It's a lot of fun to attend your first convention.
Anyone have any convention survival tips? (Other than get your flu shot NOW, and bring your cell phone and tablet(s)?)