Wednesday, March 28, 2018

LCC Reno Recap

I recently returned from Left Coast Crime held at the Nugget casino in Reno. Had a great time, but did worry for a bit about the drive from my home in Southern California to Reno. This year has seen slightly unusual weather in the area, which meant the possibility of the need for chains or temporary closures in various spots along US 395. We bought the chains and crossed our fingers. Turns out we picked the perfect days to drive both ways. We managed to avoid putting on chains and saw little rain along the way. It’s a really beautiful drive if you get the chance.

Driving, driving, driving

Along the way we listened to my first book, Fatal Brushstroke, on audio, half of it on the way up and half on the way down. Quite fun, though a little unnerving for me. Don’t know why that is.

Guests of Honor at LCC were William Kent Krueger, who I had the pleasure of hearing speak at last year’s California Crime Writers Conference, and Naomi Hirahara. Both are great writers and people, but I was particularly happy to see Naomi being honored. I’ve known her for a while and consider her a friend. She’s given me some great advice over the years and even talked me off a ledge a time or two.

It was great to catch up with friends at LCC, including other Henery Press authors who I rarely see in person. We stay connected online, but it’s still nice to actually see their faces. That’s my favorite park of mystery conventions, catching up with old friends and meeting new ones. Met many new people at this one and got some great recommendations for authors to read.

As always, there were a lot of good panels to attend on all sorts of subjects.
The All the Way to Reno: LCC Regional Settings Panel. Katherine Bolger Hyde, Kellye Garrett, Mary Feliz, Glen Erik Hamilton, Nancy G. West
Some of them were more raucous than others. Many of the panels I wanted to attend were at the same time so that made for some tough decisions. The panel I was on, Wooden Hearts: Craft Mysteries, was fun. Gay Coburn Gale performed the moderator duties. She had a lot of great questions for us. Besides me, on the panel were Peggy Ehrhart, Cheryl Hollon and Camille Minichino.

At the awards banquet, I felt honored to be at the table hosted by Vickie Fee and Cynthia Kuhn. At the table were many interesting people including Lefty Award nominees Cynthia Kuhn (for Best Humorous Mystery) and Kathleen Valenti (for Best Debut Mystery). Both are fellow Henery Press authors and lovely people.
Cynthia Kuhn, Kathleen Valenti and Me

Lots of good books nominated for the Lefty Awards. For a complete list of Lefty Award nominees and winners from this and previous conventions go here. I did get to spend some time outside the hotel. It even snowed on us a tiny bit as we walked along the river walk. Alas, I did not win anything at the slots.

Left Coast Crime is in Vancouver, BC, next year and San Diego, CA the year after.

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