The annual Pikes Peak Writers Conference was, as usual, a great experience. The emphasis this year was on suspense/thriller writers, like Wendy Corsi Staub and Jeff Lindsay (the Dexter books./series). Four acquiring editors showed up (though none wrote me a giant check, or even a small check), and I learned a lot as always. My particular thanks to Steve Saffel of Titan Books, who (I hope this is OK with him) I think of as my personal Yoda when it comes to tough love and making my work better. So many people here, including authors Kevin J. Anderson and Kevin Ikenberry, spared words of wisdom.
Highlight: I asked Jeff Lindsay how you get in the head of a character who's overwhelmed by an experience he has no preparation for. He said, "Smoke some pot and walk into a police station. You'll get it right from then on." (He's not from Colorado, where you can do that and they'll just tell you to stop stinking up the place.)
Thanks to the superb staff and volunteers of the Pikes Peak Writers Club. J.H. Evans, Jason P. Henry, Karen Fox, Laura Hayden (who insists that Alabama and Atlanta accents are different, and so she does not sound like Holly Hunter), and so many more. It was great to see my old friends and welcome new ones, including authors like Megan Rutter and Evangeline Denmark I'd known only from FaceBook.
As in all my writing endeavors and activities, thanks are due to my wife, Deb, who encourages and puts up with it all and tended to the houseful of pets who are normally my responsibility on weekends, and to my agent, Cicily Janus, who also believes.
Oh, and if you want to join PPWC, remember it's the only writers' club you're going to find that's FREE.