Bouchercon 2022

For an industry full of introverts, authors can party down. Bouchercon 2022 was packed with fascinating people sharing their love of mystery novels.

A bit of a weird name, but Bouchercon is named after Anthony Boucher who was a mystery critic, author, and editor. They also feature his Anthony Awards, which are a big, big deal in the mystery world. (Her Dying Day would be eligible next year, which is going to be hosted in San Diego. I’m already booking my hotel.)

It attracts major names like Laurie R. King, Mark Greaney, S.A. Cosby, Lori Rader-Day, and Kellye Garrett. They host and participate on panels where they talk about researching historical mysteries, what editors want you to know, using artistic license to build a mystery, and how tv adapts mystery novels.

I was fortunate to be on two panels: Cozies with an Edge and The Secret Lives of Characters. It was a blast to have these kinds of conversations with authors I never thought I’d have the good luck to be in the same room with.

I also discovered Her Dying Day breaks almost every rule of cozies.

  • No adult situations. … Um…. That one’s broken from the first sentence.
  • Hero is over 40 and an amateur sleuth.Mine is 24 and an amateur sleuth.
  • Hero works in a bookstore, library, or bed-n-breakfast.Mine is a documentary filmmaker.
  • Hero moves from big city to small town.Yeah… opposite for June.
  • There needs to be a cat or dog.Well, June has shoes.
  • No gory or violence on the page.I mostly follow this, but the ending is a little intense.

In the end we decided that Her Dying Day has that center of warmth other cozies have, but mine’s dressed in a leather jacket.

Besides walking away being one of the founders of the leather jacket cozy genre, I also came home with tons of new ideas for short stories and the start of the outline for a fourth book. I can’t wait to get going on it!

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