This past Tuesday I drove into NYC with Dave Zeltserman for a reading at the Mysterious Bookshop on Warren Street. Dave and I walked the length of Manhattan Island, sort of. Eventually, Nick Kaufmann and Dave Wellington showed up to walk us back to the other end to meet up with Alexa and have a great burger at Mudville 9. The reading itself went very well. So pleased to see Jen, Rob, Helen, Kirsten, Stephen, Matt, Devon, Evil Dave, Paul, Eugene, Rick, Carrie, and others in the audience. Big thanks also to Ian and the crew at the bookstore, who were very accommodating. Dave and I drove out of NYC in the nick of time to avoid the snowpocalypse, so we thought.
This weekend was Boskone, a fun and well run SF con in Boston. Of course, in keeping with my recent con going experience, I was sick with a cold most of the weekend. Grr. If you got ill because of me, well, you can’t prove it (and I apologize). John Langan, as has become the tradition, stayed at my house, sleeping in the Nana-bed. Sans nana of course. My kids like John better than me because he brings gifts. I’ll get revenge somehow.
I started off the con by making a quick visit to Brigham and Women’s hospital to see my new nephew Max. Very cute. He told me to go get my geek on, so I did. Max is a great kid, I tells ya.
—Boston as a setting. It was fun to reconnect with Toni (who I met last November) and her husband Steve. It was less fun to learn that Alex Jablokov knows much more about the economy, geography, topography, and any other graphy of Boston than I do.
—Where do your ideas come from? Usually a groaner for writers to always have to answer, but this panel was expertly guided by David Anthony Durham, and the audience seemed to like our answers. My ideas come from the magic vole I keep in my basement.
—Zombie Reading The audience outnumbered the cast. Barely! We read John’s “How the Day Runs Down,” which is his excellent zombie OUR TOWN story. Jack Haringa was the narrator. F. Brett Cox was the stage manager. John was Owen. I was Jackson. JoAnn Cox was my sis Jennifer. I was an awesome Jackson, I must say. I played him with restraint, but also had a smoldering intensity that set off the fire alarms.
—Weirdboiled Novels. This might’ve been the most successful panel I participated in (in terms of size of audience, and audience participation). We talked about what distinguished ‘weirdbioled’ works from ‘woo woo’ mysteries (mysteries with a ghost or a psychic or a vampire just slapped on). More on this panel at a later date, as I need to wrap my head around a few ideas.
—Where is Horror Now? It’s in Alaska! Actually, it’s all around us! We began by discussing horror works that weren’t necessarily marketed as horror, and generally did our very best to give an overview of ’09.