Yes, I was actually called a "CON VIRGIN" by someone who has been doing Archon in St. Louis for 30 years. But that was on Saturday. More on that later.
Friday at Archon was short. BCC (a.k.a. "Bruce Miller" according to his press badge) and I went to pick up our Press Passes. We talked to a person named Byron. He was very nice, very friendly and helpful. He gave us his cell phone number in case we had any questions, or if we needed suggestions on what to do to have fun at Archon 34. Unfortunately for me, the first day of Archon 34 had to be short due to other considerations. You see this here reporter has a "day job" . A job that pays the bills so I can afford to have fun with the reporting thing, and not worry about getting paid. But I did have an hour and change to see what I could see. As I was saying, when we picked up our press passes from Byron, I saw a familiar face. St. Louis author M. R. Sellars was in the house!
Now for those of you who do not know who M. R. Sellars is, he is an active member of the HWA (Horror Writers Association). He is a relatively unassuming homebody who, in his own words, considers himself just a “guy with a lot of nightmares and a word processing program.” Legend has it, he started making up stories to entertain a stuffed bear during his single digit years, then began writing them down sometime around his early teens when the growing catologue of fiction started causing him to experience migraines. Although he had several short stories and newspaper articles published during his early adult life, it wasn’t until 2000 that his first full-length novel, Harm None: A Rowan Gant Investigation, hit bookstore shelves, officially launching the acclaimed paranormal thriller series about Rowan Gant a practicing Wiccan who consults with police on strange cases.. You can find out more about M. R. Sellars at http://mrsellars.com/mrblog/ or http://www.mrsellars.com/. His series, has a total of ten books (of which I own all ten all signed by the author).
Before I had to go to the day job, we went to find the author in his lair. We found him in the Geneva Room (situated in another building, about as far from the registration desk as one could get at Archon). We decided to stop in and say "Hi". We had met M. R. at a couple of other locations (book signings here in St. Louis-see reference to the ten signed books above). He remembered us. I asked him if I could take a "truth in advertising" photo so that people on Facebook would know he followed through with his blog promise to wear his "Castle" T-shirt. He said "yes" (see my Facebook profile, "D. Alexx Miller", for the photo), and we chatted for a few more minutes as two other authors came in for the writing seminars they were doing. By the way, his books are awesome. If you have not read them, you should.
The second author we met that day was Monette Draper. She also writes under the names Monette Michaels and Rae Morgan. You can find out more about Monette at http://www.monettemichaels.com/ . After Monette obtained her law degree, she worked in a small general practice attempting, in her own way, to right wrongs and fight the good fight. Little did she realize that all those clients, opposing counsel and the problems she handled would jump start the need to write fiction. But after twenty years in law, she did just that -- started writing. First, romantic suspense, then adding paranormal, then adding a sexier side (as Rae Morgan). I found that she was a friendly person, and she let us take a picture with me as well. I got to know a little more about her on Saturday.
The third author that I met that day was Sandy Lender. Fantasy enthusiasts will recognize Sandy Lender as the author of the breakout novel Choices Meant for Gods , and a leader of workshops on world-building and characterization. Her four-year degree in English and seventeen-year career in magazine publishing augment her book publishing experience for a variety of presentations. Find out more about Sandy at http://www.authorsandylender.com/home.html. Sandy is a very nice person, and I learned some things from her on Saturday.
So ended my Friday at Archon. It was a short day for me, but I made up for it on Saturday. I will write more on that later.