Coming back from Denver today, they gate-checked The Famous Author's computer case with me inside. I had to hold my breath at minus twenty degrees for three hours. My brain is fried. See if you can guess the circle this tale will take.
The Famous Author met Christine L. Goff at Writer's Retreat Workshop way back in the ninties. I didn't make that trip, as TFA had abandoned me at that time, a lonely place and time in my life I'd rather not talk about.
Actually, it was a drawer. TFA stuck me in the bottom drawer of an old rolltop desk that no one ever opened. It was dark. Hot in the summer. Cold in the winter. Stuffy and frightening, three-hundred and sixty-five days a year. I don't ever want to go back. I might kill myself first.
Anyway, so yeah, TFA met Christine at WRW, where she talked to the students about her experience getting published--how she became author of Berkeley Crime's Birdwatcher's Mystery Series. TFA says Chris's story topped fascinating.
TFA introduced me to Chris at Left Coast Crime in Denver this past week. He had to. As like co-producer of the whole sebang (her co-partner, Susanne Proulx, also has interesting stories to tell), Chris searched TFA's computer case during the Mystery Trivia Championship:
"Who's that?" Chris said.
"My main character, Austin Carr."
"He can't talk, can he?" Chris said. "Like help you answer questions?"
Obviously she hasn't been reading my blog.
"Look at him. Do you think a thing like that could talk?" TFA said.
"Right. But I'm zipping up the bag anyway."
TFA wanted me to talk about what a great job Chris and Suzanne did running Left Coast Crime this year. I know he's being accurate when he says it was his most successful convention ever. But I want to close the circle...
While looking for one of Chris's Birdwatcher's Mystery Series, Death Takes a Gander, shown above, I stumbled across this anthology with Chris's original story in it, the one TFA told me from the ninties, how Chris got published. The book's worth picking up just for Chris's tale of serendipity, but besides our Lady of Winged Mystery, Christine L. Goff, contributors include Christopher Moore, Clive Cussler, J.A. Jance, Gayle Lynds, JA Konrath, John Lescroart, David Morrell, Kathi Kamen Goldmark, Stephen White, Hallie Ephron, Stephen Coonts, Sue Ann Jaffarian, Dave Barry, MJ Rose, Jerry B. Jenkins, and dozens of other published authors.
There's also special stuff in there for pre-published authors. Ten big rules, or something.