Hey everyone. I'm almost recovered from the weekend, and it was a great time. I got to see several old friends I haven't seen before and make many new ones. I caught several of the panels, including one about 'Zombies-are they the new vampires?' which had Permuted's own Kim Paffenroth as a panel member. Kim was great to talk with afterwards, and his comments on the panel were illuminating and thoughtful. I went to a couple readings, bought far too many books in the dealer's rooms (I have enough to read for at least 3 months), and managed to hang out every night until at least 3 am in the bar or lobby. I also had 2 pitch sessions for another novel - Haunts (it's like SUSPIRIA if you replace Argento by John Waters). They seemed to go very well, as both publishers want to see the whole manuscript.
Shout outs go to - - -
Laurie and Erik Aulk, who instantly made me feel at home in Canada. These are two of the loveliest people out there and true fans and supporters of the genre. But, absinthe still tastes just like Scope.
Kelly Laymon (who bought the first story I ever sold) and Mike Myers, who took a precarious situation with the organizers of the con and had a ball with it. I loves ya guys.
Lynne Hansen and Jeff Strand who spoke to me for some time about YA novels and shared their table so graciously with me during the Stokers.
Mandy,, who arranged the pitchs essions for me.
Brian Keene, for his support, insight, reading of a particular book, and his fantastic whiskey. I can't wait for his new novel DEAD SEAS, in which he's taking quite a risk. I think it'll pay off.
Nate Kenyon and his lovely trophy wife Nicole. Congratulations on your double sale to Leisure, buddy. Everyone buy a copy of BLOODSTONE when it comes out, a terrific read.
Ron McGillvray, a talented new film maker. Dude, congrats on the new deal!
Ellen Datlow for listening to my sob story and remembering who I was through just a story title!
Joe Lansdale, for being hissownself. I loves ya Joe!
The programmers of the gross out contest, disgusting, revolting, hilarious! Wrath and Cullen and Fran were all hilarious. Okay, you too Mike and Nate.
The lovely Fran Friel, for her sheer delight at everything! Thanks for lunch. I owe you one, and anyone who hasn't met Fran needs to know her. The nicest person in horror. And it's even genuine!
Michael Rowe and the Queer Fear panel, which had so many insights and a few shocking surprises!
Dan Foley, my host for the weekend, and always an enthusiastic, delightful person to be around. You make me want to write ten times as much, Dan. By next year, I'm sure I'll see your name on a book jacket. How about a signing together? You always make me smile.
Christopher Golden, who I got to know a bit more. You're such an inspiration to me, and I love the way you work, man. Chris's book STRANGEWOOD was an inspiration to me to get writing again after a hiatus. Thanks.
The lovely Deborah LeBlanc, who always remembers me and supports me. Our little conversation has made me rejoin HWA.
Greg Lamberson, with whom I could talk movies all night long.
The amazingly talented Gary Braunbeck. We didn't get to talk nearly enough again!
Drew Williams, who is more fun at a party than should be allowed.
Gary Fry and his lovely wife Nancy. Two of the kindest people and best conversationalists out there. Sorry I woke up too late to work out on that last day!
Wrath James White, always a joy to be around. You're a true gentleman.
Chesya Burke (who has a character named after her in BESTIAL) and Maurice Broadus - best dressed couple at the Stokers! Wow!
Jen Orasel for her amazing movie knowledge and her sheer fun-to-be-aroundedness. Also to the other Bill Carl (alienmotives) who is one of the smartest people I know.
Michael Laimo for his kind words for my writing.
Sarah Langan, who is both gorgeous and talented. If you haven't read her first novel THE KEEPER, you need to run out and get it right now. Still here? Go now I say!
Lucien Soulban, Norm Prentiss, and Jonathan Reiten - three great guys I can always count on to make me smile. Good meeting you for the first time Lucien.
David Thomas Lord, who shocked me at a panel (didn't think that was even possible).
Tom Monteleone and F Paul Wilson, two wonderful guys who could hold court anytime anywhere. The stories they tell! And they've both been very kind to me.
Brian Lumley, another gentleman, and a legend! It was good to meet you.
Nanci Kalanta and Phil the mad gardener. You're always so sweet to me, even when telling me to go to hell.
Man, I know I'm forgetting people, but a good time was had by all, and I can't wait for Horrorfind August when I'll see most of you again. Despite a few bumps, this con was well run. Things seemed to flow pretty smoothly.
William D Carl