Notes from Bouchercon 47

New Orleans 2016 — Blood on the Bayou

Nancy Gallt and I attended Bouchercon in New Orleans, to see some friends and do a little business. Also, we’re always on the lookout for a new writer who needs representation. I love hanging out with book people. The Opening Ceremonies featured the guests of honor in a small Mardi Gras parade entering the Carondelet ballroom in gaudy decorated carts. Much cheering ensued. Beads were thrown. Lights flashed. Music played. Visually it was great. There were drinks and light refreshments while we welcomed the Honored Guests.

Bouchercon 2016 Honored Guests

American Guest of Honor: Harlan Coben
Lifetime Achievement: David Morrell
Bouchercon Kids Guest of Honor: R. L. Stine
International Rising Star Guest of Honor: Craig Robertson
Local Legend: Julie Smith
Toastmasters: Harley Jane Kozak & Alexandra Sokoloff
Fan Guests of Honor: Jon & Ruth Jordan (this last no relation to me).

If you have never been to Bouchercon I should tell you that all of these people were there for the whole conference along with about 500 other writers many of whom are household names — at least in my household. There are panel discussions all day long. You can listen to your favorite writers hold forth. You can talk to them and ask questions. You might even be able to buy him or her a drink. Get a signed copy of their latest book. And if you’re anything like me, you’ll come home with a suitcase bulging with new books. A couple of promising manuscripts found their way into my carry on. Next year’s Bouchercon is in Toronto. Just sayin’.

Some awards were announced the first night. The Bouchercon seems to have a policy that keeps things moving – everybody gets applause, nobody gives speeches past a heartfelt “Thank You.” So awards for the Barry Awards, The David Thompson Special Service Award, Derringer Awards and the Macavity Awards went mercifully quickly. We cheered madly for our favorites and went off to find some oysters for our second dinner. After all, it was New Orleans.

Barry Awards

Given by Deadly Pleasures Mystery Magazine

Best Novel: C. J. Box for BADLANDS (Minotaur)
Best First Novel: Ausma Zehanat Khan, THE UNQUIET DEAD (Minotaur)
Best Paperback Original: Lou Berney, THE LONG AND FARAWAY GONE (Morrow)
Best Thriller: Taylor Stevens, THE MASK (Crown)

The Macavity Awards

Voted by Mystery Readers International, subscribers to Mystery Readers Journal and friends of MRI

Best Mystery Novel: Lou Berney, THE LONG AND FARAWAY GONE (Morrow)
Best First Mystery: Glen Erik Hamilton, PAST CRIMES (Morrow)
Best Short Story: Megan Abbott, THE LITTLE MEN (Mysterious Press)
Sue Feder Historical Mystery Award: Susanna Calkins, THE MASQUE OF A MURDER (Minotaur)

More to come… stay tuned!

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