Monday, March 7, 2016

Left Coast Crime Retrospective

by Linda O. Johnston

Hey, it's March 7 already.  My InkSpot blogs appear on the first Monday of each month.  This month Leap Year Day, February 29, was a Monday, and March 1 was therefore the first Tuesday of the month.  So here I am.

I happened to be flying home from Phoenix on February 29.  I spent a day with some family there after Left Coast Crime.  It was good to see them, and I loved the conference!

For one thing, I was on a panel with other mystery writers who have pets in their stories.  It was called Four-Legged Sidekicks.  The animals in our mysteries weren't necessarily sidekicks, but they were definitely important to each of the stories.  I enjoyed my fellow panelists and our moderator--and even ordered a copy of our panel to listen to and critique myself.  It hasn't arrived yet, though.

In addition, it was great fun seeing quite a few other Inkers there in addition to friends from all over the country, not just the area comprising Left Coast, which is defined on the website as "Western North America, as defined by the Mountain Time Zone and all time zones westward to Hawaii."  Those Inkers included Catriona McPherson, who was the conference's Toastmaster.  I attended her interview, and she mentioned me as one of those attendees who was busy.  I wonder why...

I also had a chance to chat with my wonderful MI editor Terri Bischoff.  It's always great to see her, and I'll see her again soon at Malice Domestic. 

Speaking of the area comprising LCC, I was also very happy that one of the people there recruiting attendees for next year's conference in Hawaii was a very nice woman who happened to have a service dog with her.  The dog happened to be a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, my favorite breed!  I was away from my own pups but at least wasn't totally dog-lonesome thanks to Koa, whose name is a type of Hawaiian wood.

Anyway, I'll be attending the Sisters in Crime in Hollywood soon, before I head to Malice Domestic at the end of April.  That's just before my second Barkery & Biscuits Mystery To Catch a Treat will be published, and I expect to have a great time there, too.

Do you get the impression I'm a conference nut?

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