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Tuesday, May 16, 2006

World Horror Convention 2006 

This year World Horror Con was in my very own enchanted city by the bay, San Francisco. I delighted in showing my fellow writers around the city. We took in the ocean, the Golden Gate Bridge, Chinatown, the Mission, the Castro, and numerous bookstores and restaurants.

The night before the con officially started, I ate dinner in Chinatown with a group of writers. Tim Waggoner, Lucien Soulban and I talked of recent writerly successes. John Everson regaled us with tales of past visits to San Francisco. John and Rebecca Hay, who had spent the day walking around the very hilly streets of the city joined us nonetheless for still more walking through Chinatown on the way to the restaurant. Maurice Broaddus and I talked of swapping novels and of the anticipated arrival of our wonderful fellow writer, Chesya Burke.

It was amazing to be in some of my favorite hangouts and look up to see my fellow writers there in my city with me!

The con itself was host to a variety of awesome events, including the infamous Gross Out Contest, which Cullen Bunn won once again with a truly disgusting tale that had us all rolling with laughter.

The dealer room was packed. Adam Golaski and his wonderful father Conrad were in attendance, with a new issue of New Genre.

I thrilled to the black and white silent film Call of Cthulu on Friday afternoon, which is a stunning film with a stirring score, and should not be missed by Lovecraft fans.

My reading was on Friday night. I read from Night Terrors, my Buffy the Vampire Slayer novel, written in the style of a Choose Your Own Adventure novel. The audience picked which way the narrative should go. Their first choice led them to disaster, but subsequent choices led to adventure.

Talented writer William D. Gagliani's novel Wolf's Trap came out just in time for WHC, and there was much talk and celebration of his excellent novel.

On Saturday, I was on a panel discussing the roots of American folklore in fiction. My fellow panelists, Steven Shrewsbury, Chesya Burke, and Robert Dunbar and I all shared stories of our studies of folklore, and how we incorporate that research into our writing. We told tales of how we came to love folklore -- stories about Bigfoot, giant prehistoric birds, and cars breaking down in the middle of the Jersey Devil-infested Pine Barrens.

Also on Saturday, Tim Waggoner read to us of zombies and a chilling vision of the end of the world. That night, to my utter delight, I won the auction for the cover print of "The Unknown Adventures of the Great Belzoni." The cover art was by the very talented artist Deena Warner, for William D. Gagliani's short story, which is available here.

On Sunday, Christopher Golden, Jim Moore, Matt Warner, and I held a panel on the future of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, to which there was an overwhelmingly positive response from readers.

It is always wonderful to meet with other writers and discuss techniques, triumphs, and experiences. Thanks to all who made this a great convention for me.

posted 8:33 PM

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