Thursday, April 10, 2008

One Great Conference

The Jubilee Jumbalaya Writers Conference and Book Fair in Houma may be small, but it is without a doubt the most fun of any conference I’ve ever attended (and at $25 a head, it’s also a steal). Because it’s so much fun, and because Molly Bolden—co-owner of Bent Pages Bookstore and one of the sponsors—is such a hoot, they never have trouble attracting scores of great writers.

Steve and I kicked off the weekend with dinner Friday night at a restaurant in a big old house overlooking the Intercoastal Waterway. The writing life doesn’t get much better than this: great food, a warm salt-laden breeze, and hours and hours spent talking and laughing with F. Paul Wilson, the incomparable, irrepressible Molly, Heather Graham and her ever-entertaining husband, Dennis, Hollywood screenwriter and novelist Alexandra Sokoloff, and more. If only I’d thought to bring my camera…

The conference itself was close to perfect. I did a session on the differences between thrillers and mysteries, and Steve and I did a joint session on writing with a partner. We spent most of the rest of the day listening to Alex talk about screenwriting, and I had so many lightbulb moments it was like a paparazzi attack on Britney Spears. I’ve spent this week going over the first half of DEADLIGHT, and hopefully now I’ve figured out what’s been bothering me about this book, and how to fix it. No matter how long you’ve been in this business, you can always get something out of a conference, especially one as wonderful and laid back as this one.

The booksigning went great, too; I don’t think I’ve ever sold so many books at a signing! Lots of people bought my entire Sebastian St. Cyr series. Here’s New Orleans writer Farrah Rochon, making another friend…

If you’re in the area next year, do plan to attend. I’ve already snapped up an invitation to come back.

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Blogger Steve Malley said...

Sounds awesome!

3:49 PM  
Blogger Farrah Rochon said...

I agree, Candice, it was a great conference. Aspiring authors in the south Louisiana area are very lucky.

5:32 PM  
Blogger Shauna Roberts said...

Sounds like you made many fans.

Are you thinking of writing screenplays as well as novels?

6:17 PM  
Blogger cs harris said...

No, Shauna. No one over thirty has any chance in Hollywood these days. But I do like to use screenwriting techniques in my novels.

10:53 PM  
Blogger Charles Gramlich said...

I had really wanted to attend and if it hadn't been for that pesky IRB conference I would have. I'll definitely try for it next year.

8:58 AM  
Blogger Lana Gramlich said...

Glad you had a great time. :)

10:54 AM  

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