Bouchercon 2015

Bouchercon is the World Mystery Convention for mystery writers and readers to get together each year. "Murder Under the Oaks" took place in Raleigh, NC, from October 8 - 11, 2015. I attend mystery conventions like this one as both a writer and a reader. With my author hat, I have business meetings to attend, panels where I'm a presenter, and book signings where I get to meet amazing readers. But as a mystery fan, the coolest thing about conventions is getting to hang out with other writers and readers to chat about mysteries.

Back row: Gigi Pandian, Debra Goldstein, Martha Reed (departing), Julie Hennrikus, Beth Wasson (executive director), Frankie Bailey (departing), Lori Roy, G.M. GM Malliet, Laura DiSilverio, Susan Shea, Diane Vallere, Simon Wood (departing) – Front: Sarah Glass (web maven), Cari Baker Dubiel, Hank Phillippi Ryan (departing), Leslie Budewitz (incoming president), Catriona McPherson (last year’s president)

Back row: Gigi Pandian, Debra Goldstein, Martha Reed (departing), Julie Hennrikus, Beth Wasson (executive director), Frankie Bailey (departing), Lori Roy, G.M. GM Malliet, Laura DiSilverio, Susan Shea, Diane Vallere, Simon Wood (departing) – Front: Sarah Glass (web maven), Cari Baker Dubiel, Hank Phillippi Ryan (departing), Leslie Budewitz (incoming president), Catriona McPherson (last year’s president)

SinC President Catriona McPherson handing the “Seal” to incoming President Leslie Budewitz.   I’m one of the new members of the Sisters in Crime board of directors, so the morning before the convention kicked off, I attended my first SinC board meeting (more details about the board and our roles can be found  here ). Are you a member of Sisters in Crime? If not, why not?  Here’s  why you should join.

SinC President Catriona McPherson handing the “Seal” to incoming President Leslie Budewitz.

I’m one of the new members of the Sisters in Crime board of directors, so the morning before the convention kicked off, I attended my first SinC board meeting (more details about the board and our roles can be found here). Are you a member of Sisters in Crime? If not, why not? Here’s why you should join.

This year’s  Eleanor Taylor Bland Crime Fiction Writers of Color Award  winner, Vera Chan, was introduced at the Sisters in Crime breakfast. One of my roles on the SinC board is to facilitate this fantastic award, which is now a yearly $1,500 grant, so let me know if you have any questions about it!

This year’s Eleanor Taylor Bland Crime Fiction Writers of Color Award winner, Vera Chan, was introduced at the Sisters in Crime breakfast. One of my roles on the SinC board is to facilitate this fantastic award, which is now a yearly $1,500 grant, so let me know if you have any questions about it!

It’s always a treat to hang out with Diane Vallere and Kendel Lynn. I met the two of them early in my writing journey. Kendel is now the editor of my Jaya Jones treasure hunt mystery series, but before that, the three of us collaborated on   Other People’s Baggage  , a collection of three interconnected mystery novellas. We’re still friends after writing a book together, so I know these pals are the real deal.

It’s always a treat to hang out with Diane Vallere and Kendel Lynn. I met the two of them early in my writing journey. Kendel is now the editor of my Jaya Jones treasure hunt mystery series, but before that, the three of us collaborated on Other People’s Baggage, a collection of three interconnected mystery novellas. We’re still friends after writing a book together, so I know these pals are the real deal.

Big thanks to Karen Pullen for arranging the Guppy Lunch, and to Jim Jackson for making sure we all introduced ourselves to put faces to the names we know on the online group.

Big thanks to Karen Pullen for arranging the Guppy Lunch, and to Jim Jackson for making sure we all introduced ourselves to put faces to the names we know on the online group.

And thanks to Art Taylor and Gerald So for arranging a lunch meet-up for the Short Mystery Fiction Society.

And thanks to Art Taylor and Gerald So for arranging a lunch meet-up for the Short Mystery Fiction Society.

Harriette Sackler (moderating), Art Taylor, Barb Goffman, Gigi Pandian, John Shepphird.    I spoke on a short story panel along with three of the authors up for Anthony awards for Best Short Story this year, so as you can imagine, we had a great discussion. We talked about the rising interest in short fiction, what draws us to this form, the craft of writing short stories, favorite stories that inspired us, and of course I brought up my love of  locked-room “impossible crime” short stories .

Harriette Sackler (moderating), Art Taylor, Barb Goffman, Gigi Pandian, John Shepphird.


I spoke on a short story panel along with three of the authors up for Anthony awards for Best Short Story this year, so as you can imagine, we had a great discussion. We talked about the rising interest in short fiction, what draws us to this form, the craft of writing short stories, favorite stories that inspired us, and of course I brought up my love of locked-room “impossible crime” short stories.

Raleigh is a foodie town, so there were many cute restaurants to check out, including the  Happy & Hale cafe with organic salads and green juice right across the street from the hotel. (Zoe Faust and Dorian the gargoyle would be pleased.)

Raleigh is a foodie town, so there were many cute restaurants to check out, including the Happy & Halecafe with organic salads and green juice right across the street from the hotel. (Zoe Faust and Dorian the gargoyle would be pleased.)

Three of this year's Anthony winners: Art Taylor, Hank Phillippi Ryan, Lori Rader-Day. The Anthony Awards were voted on by attendees and announced on the last evening of the convention.

Three of this year's Anthony winners: Art Taylor, Hank Phillippi Ryan, Lori Rader-Day. The Anthony Awards were voted on by attendees and announced on the last evening of the convention.

Another award given out during the ceremony was the David S. Thompson Award, presented by the Bouchercon Board to recognize extraordinary efforts to develop and promote the mystery and crime fiction community. Bill and Toby Gottfried were given this year’s award. The Gottfrieds live not far from me, so I’m lucky I get to see them on a semi-regular basis at Janet Rudolph’s Literary Salons.

Another award given out during the ceremony was the David S. Thompson Award, presented by the Bouchercon Board to recognize extraordinary efforts to develop and promote the mystery and crime fiction community. Bill and Toby Gottfried were given this year’s award. The Gottfrieds live not far from me, so I’m lucky I get to see them on a semi-regular basis at Janet Rudolph’s Literary Salons.

Huge thanks to the team who worked behind the scenes to make the convention a success.Last year was a blast, too, and I'm already looking forward to next year in New Orleans -- hope to see you there!