Friday, March 7, 2008
Left Coast Crime, Day 1
I took it as a good omen this morning that I turned the television on to see a shot from Hitchcock's The Birds. I think it will be a fun day for mystery and crime writing fans in Denver!
Yesterday's panel with Peter May, Christine Jorgensen and Robert Greer went very well. The room was full of folks who wanted to know about psychological thrillers, and, given that my fellow panelists have written almost thirty books between them, I think I was the one in the room who learned the most! Most gratifying, though, was the number of aspiring writers who came to the signing table to mention that they were given renewed energy and hope for their own writing. I loved meeting every one of them--and now that my biggest panel is over, I'll be able to mingle a bit more and meet more readers and writers.
On my way to grab a little solo lunch and prepare for the panel, I was nearly run down by one of the clever electric trams that travel up and down the pedestrian mall in front of the hotel. The sidewalk and the street are fashioned from the same patterned concrete and the curb is low and I just kind of began wandering. I completely ignored the warning bell and only got out of the way when people on the sidewalk began shouting at me! But those electric trams are so quiet (well, except for the whole bell thing). It makes me worry a bit for the day when all vehicles are silent--They should broadcast music or make constant pinging noises or buzzing or something.
Fortunately, last night when I took the tram to and from dinner I was with a great crowd of folks and managed to stay on the sidewalk--even after having a whole beer with dinner. (And I confess that I felt no extraordinary effects from the alcohol even with Denver's major altitude--though it really did mess with my sleep.) I was thrilled and privileged to have writers Marcus Sakey and Jason Starr on either side of me at the restaurant. They're just as smart and interesting as their books.
In about forty-five minutes I'm be in front of a breakfast crowd and will have a whole minute to talk about ISABELLA MOON. I'll be there with twenty other debut writers and it will be my last "debut" event for the novel. I have lots of fun things to give away, but I can't imagine how many folks will want to get up for a 7:30 a.m. show!