Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Left Coast Crime Hawaii

I can't believe I haven't mentioned in my blog that Left Coast Crime was absolutely fabulous. The location, well, it was Hawaii, so what's not to like? Programming was outstanding. Hats Off to Bill and Toby and the entire committee. Great job. Well done. Lee Goldberg was fantastic as Toastmaster. Rhys Bowen and Barry Eisler were terrific Guests of Honor. Pam Dehnke and Vallery were wonderful Fan Guests of Honor, and this year's quilt (Pam and Vallery make the quilts for each LCC) raised over $800 for charity. The Awards ceremony was great--and the awards themselves were beautiful. Lefty Award went to Tim Maleeny for Greasing the Pinata (Poisoned Pen Press) The Bruce Alexander Memorial Historical Mystery Award went to Kelli Stanley for Nox Dormienda, A Long Night For Sleeping (Five Star) and The Hawaii Five-0 went to Neil S. Plakcy for Mahu Fire (Alyson Books). Congratulations to the winners and all the nominees.

Everyone had a great time. There were participants from the U.S., the U.K., Germany, Sweden, Australia, Canada and Japan--and turtles from the Pacific. Definitely an international convention in Paradise. I especially liked that there were so many families.

My panels: I interviewed Lee Goldberg who regaled us all with great stories on writing, TV and Hollywood. I also co-moderated the discussion on Left Coast Crime 101 with Toby Gottfried. Everything and anything you'd need to know about the convention and Hawaii. My last assignment was mystery bookgroups, and I'll be setting up a yahoo group to discuss different types of bookgroups, as well as keep track of what the bookgroups are reading. Some very unique formats for groups. I liked Gillian Roberts 'kindergarten' concept. Every participant in the group (mystery or whatever genre) has to bring a sentence, paragraph or page that they think is pivotal to the book or to their appreciation of the book. That quickly eliminates the "I liked it/I hated it" syndrome. More on this in a later blog.

As always it was great to see old friends and make new ones. That's what conventions are all about, at least for me.

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