Like A Virgin: Bouchercon For Rookies

Last year, I attended Bouchercon, the world’s largest mystery convention, as a rookie. It was cool, I got a prize, and I wrote about my experience here.

This year’s Bouchercon will take place in St. Petersburg, Florida from Sept. 6-9, 2018.

Each year, there are several mystery writers and fans who will attend Bouchercon (or Bcon) for the very first time. Bouchercon newbies, you should read BOLO BOOKS’ definitive guide to Bouchercon here:

01fa4d38aaedd8419a9333c787d87975c7a1722fd7
Reading the Rainbow: Kristopher Zgorski, Owen Laukkanen, Stephanie Gayle, John Copenhaver, Jessie Chandler & Greg Herren
A few things I would add to BOLO BOOKS’ comprehensive list:
-Bring comfortable shoes. This year, events will be set at various hotels so you will be walking a lot.
01f0bf718f04170c352b3019defd9cb8d6ff0ddc2e
Mindy Mejia, Sherry Roberts, Devin Abraham, Dale Phillips
-Pack light. There isn’t a dress code but some people dressed up their jeans with nice shirts and shoes, and many people were dressed in business casual. I’m not a dress person, so I only needed 1-2 dresses for dinner, etc.
017adc44a36987a3b895552b977dbf643663f0faca
Christine Husom. Cheryl Reed, Libby Kirsch, Penni Harris Jones, me, and Mia Manansala
-Definitely print out the schedule to decide which panels you want to hit. Don’t be afraid to leave a panel if it doesn’t suit you. I sat in the back so I could walk in and out of panel rooms without making a fuss.
Leigh Perry
With Leigh Perry
-I really enjoyed the Wednesday SinC Into Great Writing workshop last year led by Alexandra Sokoloff, and the workshop this year sounds great, too. It’s free for Sisters in Crime members.
Clair Lamb
With Clair Lamb
-I packed a canvas bag inside my suitcase so I only paid for one bag on the way to Bouchercon, and then two bags for the return trip. On the way home, I stuffed my clothes in the canvas bag and put the free books I picked up at the convention in my suitcase. I saw some people walking around with rolling suitcases. I may do that this year since I’m not in the main hotel. Instead, I booked a place on Airbnb which has many homes and condos within walking distance of The Vinoy.
0130da96e39bf6d8b1069cf94e7d32853507471bed
-I also packed snacks and one reusable water bottle.
-Don’t forget your business cards. This year I may put some pins on my badge so people know I am a member of Twin Cities SinC and MWA-Midwest as well.
0168a9ae2f5237e64ca83183c0f3c12143a2e572ef
-Don’t be afraid to take breaks and/or naps as needed. You can’t do it all, folks.

01567a3d631f9bc7ef9c74a29686edd8035514cc9f

-It’s important to network at the bar, even if it’s just for a little while. It is a *bar*, so be careful and hang out with a group.
image1 (1)
MWA-Midwest Happy Half Hour: Christine Husom, Libby Kirsch Wamsley, Penni Harris Jones, Mia Manansala, Jess Lourey, Cheryl Reed, Jessica Laine
Can’t wait to meet you in person in St. Pete!
~Jessica
Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s