Friday, May 30, 2014

Bouchercon Dreams

I love Bouchercon, the world mystery convention. Bouchercon is a fan-tastic 4 day fan convention for readers, writers, editors, publishers and everyone who loves mysteries. What you might not know is that I actually attend Bouchercon many nights during the year. How is that possible? Because I “dream of Bouchercon.” Yes, I’d say at least once a week I have a dream in which I’m with friends at Bouchercon, checking into hotels, attending panels, meeting up at the bar, sightseeing, and more. Now, just to be clear, these dreams are not nightmares.

O.K. so why do I dream about Bouchercon? Probably because it is only takes place one weekend a year, and I have to pack up all those dreams and make them a reality in a mere 4 or 5 days! Those days are so much fun and so full of crime fiction and friends, that they fly by all too quickly. So my dreams fill in the gaps. LOL

I’ve been attending Bouchercon for over 30 years, and each Bouchercon is fresh and new, specifically because of new programming, new writers and the fact that B'con is always held in a different location. What I like best about Bouchercon is meeting old friends, making new ones, and spending time with people who are passionate about reading, and mysteries, in particular. So when I was asked to be part of the blog tour for the Long Beach Bouchercon, I said yes!

This year Bouchercon will be in Long Beach, November 13-16, 2014. Check out the website for Guests of Honor, Hotels, Trips, Attendees and more.

There will be over 2000 attendees this year, so I have a few tips (or refreshers for past attendees) to make your Bouchercon experience the very best! There’s multi-panel programming, so you’ll need to make some tough decisions. You won’t be able to see or hear it all. That being said, enjoy what you do see, and don’t worry about the rest. Be sure to attend special events, such as opening ceremonies, the banquet, guest of honor interviews, special luncheons. Come early, stay late. There will be side-trips.

Places to meet other readers and writers in a casual way: 
 1) The lobby. Have a seat and watch the world go by or strike up a conversation with the person next to you. That person might be a best selling thriller writer or someone who will become a life-long friend.
 2) The Bookroom: good for ‘grazing’ and interacting with others who are buying books and might need your expert advice. Be sure and buy some books!
3) The bar: even if you’re not a drinker, it’s all happening at the bar! Be sure and stop by.. mostly later in the evening, but any time works! Don't be shy.
4) Restaurants and coffee shops: If someone’s wearing a Bcon tag when you’re out and about, be sure and say hi! Or put together a small group for dinner and ask anyone standing around the hotel lobby to join you.

I volunteered to be on the committee of the first Bouchercon I attended. Since then I’ve been on 5 host committees, and now I’m on the Bouchercon Board. Maybe that’s more than you want to do, but there are many other fun ways to volunteer onsite at the convention. Check out the possibilities to volunteer at B'con: Murder at the Beach- Long Beach. It’s great fun!

So those are just a few tips for enjoying yourself at Bouchercon this year. Over the next few months I’ll be posting more. And, I just might be on the Bouchercon 101 panel. Or maybe Bouchercon 202… how to get even more out of your Bouchercon experience!

Hope to see you at Bouchercon: Murder at the Beach in November.

In the meantime, see you in my dreams….


Dana King said...

I'll be there, and looking forward to meeting you in person.

Dru said...

Looking forward to seeing you again.

Anonymous said...

I'll be there this year, Janet! Can't wait! And how cool that you dream of Bouchercon! :-)

Rick Robinson said...

In my experience, you are so (franticly) busy during the con that it's lucky to even catch a glimpse or have an across-the-room hand wave. We won't be making the Long Beach trip, our one con this year was Left Coast Crime.

Janet Rudolph said...

Sometimes I feel that way, too... but LCC is a great convention, also!