After clearing registration (with a very sweet swag bag, I might add), we headed to the Raw Dog Screaming Press Party and mingled. Did I mention the free drink ticket? I went with a classy Merlot because I thought it fit my spooky aesthetic with the dark crimson color. Got to meet one of my Twitter pals, Rae Knowles and she’s even cooler in person! She was even kind enough to autograph a copy of her debut novel, The Stradivarius for me.
(Those into sapphic erotic horror, hurry up and give her your money: https://a.co/d/9ydG95l)
Then off to The Dealer Room with my Winding Road Stories fam, where we manned a booth stocked with our books and chatted with fellow horror fans which is a dream come true. When else can you chat about monsters, serial killers and/or cryptids, with someone you’ve just met? I also saw quite a feat: Fellow WRDS author, Clare Castleberry, ate an entire Nature Valley crumbly-ass granola bar without making a huge mess. Witchcraft! I believe Vanessa and Michael were similarly impressed.
We sold some books!
Then it was off to listen to author readings: Ally Malinenko, Bryan Young, Paul Lubaczewski, and the illustrious, she-of-no-mess Clare Castleberry. Castleberry’s reading of her upcoming Forbidden Gardens caught my interest quickly and her first novel, Azalea House, a Southern gothic horror with V.C. Andrews vibes (and if you didn’t read Flowers in the Attic as an impressionable teenager, have you really lived?). I bought copies of both. You can too! https://a.co/d/0ke1EVv
THE DAY of my panel, Make No Mistake About It-How to Avoid Medical Mistakes In Your Writing! Eek. But I had Ashley by my side who endured most of my anxiety for me, as is her custom.
First on the docket was the Dread and Desire panel where I was heartened to discover that everyone else was also obsessed with sexy villains. An insightful, and at times, fucking hilarious, discussion of erotic horror.
Given that this was my first panel, I was nervous but as it turns out, talking medical horror is my sweet space! Especially as someone who loves a nice poisoning (even briefly considering a toxicology fellowship before realizing I would have to wear real pants for two years). And yes, I talked about how much I love Rocuronium.
Lunch and a nice Southern Tier Nu Haze.
Ate pizza and gawked at the view:
Back to the Dealer Room to spend tons of money on quality horror content and promote The Broken Heart. Sold some too! Also got a great awkward photo with Douglas Gwilym, bad ass author and cool human.
5:00 p.m. was my first author signing! I brought all three of my books: Only You Can Prevent Forest Fires, Just Desserts, and The Broken Heart and sold copies of each, personally autographing each for the wonderful folks who stopped by. Ashley kept track of the everything, like my personal Kris Jenner but way hotter.
I had a dumb smile plastered on my face ALL day. Living my childhood dream 🙂
If you’re at StokerCon, come by the Dealer Room and get a copy of my novel, The Broken Heart, releasing on September 19th. Be the envy of your friends. Marvel at my terrible handwriting and signature!