Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Killer Konference

Last weekend's Killer Nashville mystery conference was a huge success. Attendance doubled from the previous year, and the folks I talked with gave it rave reviews. KN has grown to the ranks of second tier conferences (Bouchercon, Malice Domestic, Left Coast Crime would be first tier). As such, organizer Clay Stafford announced that the 2011 edition would move from its Marriott Cool Springs (Franklin) location to downtown Nashville.

One of the reasons for its success is the tireless efforts of my writers group and Murderous Musings blog colleague, Beth Terrell (author of Racing the Devil). Beth serves as Executive Director of the conference, handling everything from scheduling panels to supervising volunteers to keeping things moving smoothly.

Thriller writer Jeffery Deaver, author of a long string of best sellers, served as Guest of Honor for the fifth edition of Killer Nashville. He showed his laid-back attitude in a session where he was interviewed by Clay Stafford. In a following session, he discussed how he goes about the job of writing thrillers. And he made no bones about it. It's a job.

"Writing is a business," he stressed. You get up in the morning, sit down at the keyboard, and start writing. People in other professions don't get up and say "I don't feel like working today." Neither should writers.

One of the most popular features of the conference was pitch sessions with agents and editors. For most of three days, writers trooped in and out for ten-minute pitches with four agents and two editors. Several authors have succeeded in getting agents and publishing contracts from previous years' pitches, so the hopes were high among the current crop.

The rather pricey Guest o f Honor Dinner Saturday night was well attended. Awards presented included the Magnolia Award (from Southeast Chapter Mystery Writers of America) to Charles Todd, the Silver Falchion Award to Radine Trees Nehring for Journey to Die For, the Claymore Dagger Award to Tom Wallace for Gnosis, and the TBI Crime Scene winner was Laura Hayden. After Jeffery Deaver received his unique Killer Nashville Guitar, writer Don Bruns played it and sang one of his songs.

If you've never attended Killer Nashville, now's a good time to be looking ahead to August 19-21, 2011.

Check out the contest for my new book, A Sporting Murder, at my website.

1 comment:

jrlindermuth said...

Regret that I couldn't make it this year. Hopefully I'll see you all again in 2011.