It's mid-late-March now, or late-mid-March, but in the early part of the month, Marcy and I were at the Tucson Festival of Books (for the 11th year straight, for me). We had a great time, as always. We sold and signed a bunch of books, saw lots of friends, and generally enjoyed spending the weekend with 150,000 or so fellow book lovers.
The weekend started out with a bang when I found out that my novella "Byrd's Luck," published in the anthology The Untamed West--a benefit for the organization Western Fictioneers--was a finalist for the Western Writers of America's Spur Awards. It's that group's equivalent of the Edgar Awards for mystery, the Stoker Awards for horror, the World Fantasy Awards for fantasy, or the Hugo Awards for science fiction. Out of 98 stories judged, there one winner and two finalists were chosen. At the WWA convention in June (conveniently in Tucson this year), I'll be presented with a certificate of some kind. It's really an honor. The full list of winners and finalists is here.
Because my story leads off the book, if you want a good long taste of it, you can visit the book's Amazon page and use the "Look Inside" feature to read the first several chapters for free.
Also at the June WWA convention, I'll be on a panel with my friend David Morrell, talking about comics. That'll be a can't-miss event. More as we get closer.
At the festival, Marcy and I had two events. The first was a workshop on collaboration, at which we discussed the pros and cons and working methods authors use to write together. Then we put the audience to work, collaborating on their own quick story ideas and writing a paragraph together. They responded enthusiastically and came up with some really terrific work, and everybody had a good time. We're hoping we can do similar workshops at other events.
The next day, we were on a V-Wars panel. Jonathan Maberry, the creator of V-Wars (a book and comic series headed for TV) was supposed to be on it with us, but was sidelined with injuries, so we did it with Yvonne Navarro and Weston Ochse (who, like us, have had stories in V-Wars anthologies) and moderator Linda Addison. Jonathan was missed, but we had fun, and talked about him behind his back.
Here's Marcy at our table: