Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Me, myself, and...? by Cathy Ace

Life - Do you bring non crime writing friends or family with you to conventions? Pros and cons please.

Photo taken of me at LCC 2019 by Husband

Usually, no. Being at a festival, convention, or conference is wonderful – but it’s busy!

Panels, get-togethers, informal and/or formal meetings, drinks parties, lunches, dinners etc. It’s all go.

Yes, there are social opportunities between attending panels and get-togethers, but even then, I enjoy that time to be with fellow authors, bloggers, reviewers, and – most importantly – with readers! Thus, I feel it’s better to be there on my own, so that my time is my own, and I’m not having to consider another person. It means I’m 100% “present”.

There’s also the travel aspect: it’s not cheap to attend a convention, so additional flights etc aren’t usually a viable possibility.

With Kristopher Zgorski at Malice Domestic 2019

That said, I have made an exception to this pattern a couple of times, to date.

L to R: Husband, KSue Anderson, a reader I met at LCC Monterey in 2014,
who is now a chum, me, and
photo taken by Jeffrey Siger at LCC Vancouver 2019

First, when Left Coast Crime was held in Vancouver (where I live) in 2019 I was honoured to be the Toastmaster – and, with it being a 90 minute drive away, as opposed to a couple of flights away – my husband joined me to lend support (I was horrifically nervous!). It was his first experience of one of “our” conventions – and even he had to admit that he finally understood why I always get home absolutely knackered after one! The great thing about him being able to attend? He got to meet so many people whose names I bandy about – which is great!

With Dru Ann Love at Bouchercon 2018

Second, when I was Guest of Honor at the Chanticleer Reviews conference in Washington State in 2022 he also joined me: again, a 90 minute drive away, and, again, he was my rock before I made important speeches and presentations.

Bouchercon 2018 - at a dinner organised by Kathy Boone Reel,
with Elly Griffiths
I have loved every convention and festival I have ever attended, and have met and got to know people I’d never have met or got to know if my husband had always been with me…so I think the balance has been just right.

This year I’ll be attending the inaugural (well, it’s the 3rd, but this is the first time it will be in-person) Gwyl Crime Cymru Festival in Aberystwyth, Wales, in April, then CrimeFest in Bristol, England, in May. In August I’ll be in Calgary, Canada at When Words Collide, and then I’ll be at Bouchercon in San Diego, USA at the end of August/beginning of September…so it will be a busy year in terms of festivals, conferences and conventions. And I’ll be flying solo this year – both literally, and figuratively…except that he “might” accompany me to Bouchercon…we’ll see.

Whether I’m alone, or with him, I hope to see some of you at one or more of those events!

You can always keep up with where I'll be, and when, at my website's events page:

And you can keep up with all my books at the same place - my website is updated regularly (yes, even when I'm on the road!):


Catriona McPherson said...

See you in San Diego, Cathy! Cx

Linda said...

I took my husband to LCC in Phoenix in 2016 and he didn’t have any fun at all. So he said that he wouldn’t go to another one. The next convention was in Honolulu and Colleen and I went together and had a blast. The mystery fan conventions are not for everyone.

Dru Ann said...

Miss you very much. Hope you'll be in San Diego. I miss our meals.

Anonymous said...

susan Shea here- See you at Bouchercon