|Gigi Pandian & Mike Befeler|
Mike Befeler is the Author of MYSTERY OF THE DINNER PLAYHOUSE, NURSING HOMES ARE MURDER, CARE HOMES ARE MURDER, CRUISING IN YOUR EIGHTIES IS MURDER (Lefty Award Finalist for best humorous mystery of 2012), SENIOR MOMENTS ARE MURDER, LIVING WITH YOUR KIDS IS MURDER (Lefty Award Finalist for best humorous mystery of 2009), RETIREMENT HOMES ARE MURDER, THE BACK WING AND THE V V AGENCY.
One of the favorite events at the Left Coast Crime Conference is the Meet the New Authors Breakfast. Since this breakfast event started in 2008, there have been between twelve and forty-four new authors introduced to readers each year. The format is simple. Each new author has one minute to tell the most important thing that fans should know about his or her debut mystery/crime/suspense/thriller novel. I have been privileged to moderate this event every year except in 2014 when I was unable to attend the conference and Donnell Ann Bell graciously took my place.
The event started because I was a new author at the 2007 Left Coast Crime Conference in Seattle, and I found no events for debut authors. Since I was on the committee for the 2008 Left Coast Crime Conference in Denver, I volunteered to put an event together, and this breakfast program is what resulted. Subsequent LCC committees have decided to keep the tradition going.
We had confusion the first year because we called it the New Authors Breakfast, and some people thought it was only open for new authors to come to breakfast. Once we changed the name to the Meet the New Authors Breakfast, this cleared up some of the confusion, although I still get questions about who can attend. The answer: this event is open to all LCC attendees to have breakfast and listen to the presenters. The presenters are authors with a first published crime novel from the year before up through the date of the conference.
Some of the award-nominated, award-winning and bestselling authors who have been introduced at this event over its seven year history include J. T. Ellison, Michelle Gagnon, Beth Groundwater, Rosemary Harris, C. J. Lyons, Rebecca Cantrell, Sophie Littlefield, G. M. Malliet, Kelli Stanley, Jeri Westerson, Stephen Jay Schwartz, Darrell James, Rochelle Staab, Chuck Greaves and Terry Shames.
What I particularly enjoy about this event is having the opportunity to introduce new authors and then watch as their careers unfold.
I invite everyone to attend the Left Coast Crime Conference in Portland, March 12-15, 2015, and join the Meet the New Authors Breakfast from 7 until 8:30 on Friday morning. Rochelle Staab will be joining me as the official timer and does an excellent job of holding people to the one minute allotted for each presentation. So far we have a list of twenty-eight outstanding new authors, and I expect the list to expand by the time of the conference. I always provide a summary sheet of the new authors so that readers can make notes and take this with them as a reading list.
Are you a new author coming to LCC? Be sure and contact the organizers and sign up for the New Author Breakfast.