I Know Mystery Writers Are Regular People, too, but this still happens

Today is the day after my favorite 3-day conference for mystery writers, New England Crime Bake. It’s the day after I reconnected with far-away friends, and made new friends.

Like past years, and attending any writing workshops or conferences, my brain is bursting with new tips, tricks, and inspiration for getting words onto the page.

But my big takeaway is thoughts of the people and conversations.

So many of my friends are now published authors. On Friday night, we got to celebrate the ‘debut’ mystery novelists. It’s such a thrill and honor to be able to congratulate others on their accomplishments. (If they can do it, so can I, right?)

The celebration was called “Death, Desserts, and Debutants.” The only thing that died was our will power to resist chocolate – the desserts buffet was simply decadent.

I ended up at a table with a debut mystery novelist I hadn’t met before. She was a so funny. I recognized her name and thought she was a panelist or presenter. She wasn’t. I knew I’d never met her before, but there was something so familiar that I had to keep staring at her and talking to her. I couldn’t write it off as simply recognizing her name from the attendees roster.

And then it happened. She mentioned the name of her book. Idyll Threats. And I swear I became a teenager barely able to contain a Squee of excitement. Yes! Of course! Stephanie Gayle! I became all “OMG,” and “Stephanie, I loved your book,” and “Stephanie, when’s the next one coming out?” Such a star-struck fan. I laughed at my behavior, but couldn’t help myself.

My fan status started a few months back when Stephanie’s publicist contacted me about Stephanie and her novel. I ended up interviewing Stephanie and reviewing her novel on my blog, and then even interviewed her for a couple of hours at The Writer’s Chatroom one Sunday evening. I loved the book, loved the fresh writing, the protagonist, all of it. It was a treat to get to know more about the author behind the story.

On Friday night, it took a while for all the pieces to click into place. But then, there I was, with the author, and, wow, like everyone else I’ve met at this conference, she was a normal person. She even has a full-time day job and has to find/make time to write. (She’s 3rd from the left in the 2nd row in the pic).


2015 Debut Mystery Novelists at New England Crime Bake

Several ‘big names’ always attend the conference (this year’s guest of honor was Elizabeth George, others include Craig Johnson, Joe Finder, Lee Child, Charlaine Harris) and guess what? They are people too!

I love being part of the community of mystery writers. And I love this particular conference for the wonderful conversations and long-lasting friendships that develop.

Two of my fellow NHWN bloggers, Diane, and Julie (aka Julianne Holmes, debut mystery novelist – 3rd from left in last row in pic) were there, too, celebrating and meeting their fave authors, getting star-struck, and striking up conversations with new friends.

What author(s) turn you into a (giggly) star-struck fan?

Lisa_2015Lisa J. Jackson is an independent writer and editor who enjoys working with manufacturing, software, and technology businesses of all sizes. She loves researching topics, interviewing experts, and helping companies tell their stories. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

9 thoughts on “I Know Mystery Writers Are Regular People, too, but this still happens

  1. You made me laugh reading this. I totally do the same when I meet someone I admire but don’t know personally. I once met my favourite writer when I was a kid and I couldn’t say two words to him, haha, just stood there and stared. Cheers to you, though! Seems like you had a blast there! 🙂

  2. Gail Carson Levine. I met her several years ago (yes I was already technically above the age she writes for), but I freaked out because she was the first author who introduced me to my favorite genre, fairy tale retellings. I’m glad you had so much fun at your conference!

  3. Colleen McCullough. The Thorn Birds. Without a publicist, without a background of ‘important’ people or lots of ‘How to write’ seminars etc. In a remote location she wrote and finished her first novel. Who had ever heard of her? Who knows her today? yet the ones who have seen her, read her book or researched her life KNOW……There indeed was a gifted author. That is the inspiration I live by. I write because its who I am perhaps others later will judge whether anything I wrote or published has merit. I will simply write and hopefully inspire others to do the same.

  4. J.K Rowling. Her books were my first and they created the orge to write. I do like works of Franklin W. Dixon. He rocked in Hardy Boys. But I have to even tell about Arthur Conan Doyle. He encouraged me too and is best I believe.

  5. Stephen King is my book drug of choice in writers, but I always strive to read new novels by authors if for nothing else to celebrate their success and encourage my dream of being in their place one day. I am totally going to try and make the next 3-Day extravaganza. I never knew it existed until this blog. Thank You for opening a new world with people like ME! LOL

  6. I met Debra Oswald a few weeks ago. I had to do everything in my power to actually say something and not stare with my mouth dropping to the floor.

  7. Pingback: Crime Baked | Live to Write – Write to Live

  8. Pingback: My Take on Crime Bake 2015 | Live to Write – Write to Live

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