Monday, December 1, 2014

It's All About Crime Fiction Fans

Kerry Hammond is here today to report back on her Super Fan panel at the world's largest mystery convention, Bouchercon. 

I was sad to leave Long Beach after this year’s Bouchercon. This was by far one of the best conventions I’ve ever attended. Perhaps part of the reason for this was that I was fortunate enough to be a part of one of the panels. This year was the very first year that Bouchercon has had a panel for fans, and it was a hit, if I do say so myself.

The panel was called All About the Fans: Super Fans and How They Got Involved. It was moderated by author Brad Parks and panel members were Al Abramson, Dru Ann Love, Doris Ann Norris, Janet Rudolph and myself. I don’t think we started off trying to be funny, but when your fearless leader is Brad Parks, there’s just nowhere else to go. Brad did such a wonderful job as moderator and asked questions that allowed us to shine. We were each asked to tell our most memorable or embarrassing author signing moment, and later were asked to admit to the strangest place we like to read.

Each panelist told a bit about their background and their interest in the mystery genre.  It was not surprising to find out that we had a lot in common. We all seemed to begin reading at an early age, many of us starting with Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys, then working our way to Agatha Christie and beyond. Another thing that seemed to be common was our love for books and our description of our homes. Each of us lives in a home filled with stacks, shelves and rows of books. I think the word hoarder might be muttered by a non-reader, but anyone who loves to read as much as I do knows that the proper term is collector.

Moderator Brad Parks and Fan Guest of Honor Al Abramson

Before the fan panel, I used to think that my love of signed books was something that made only me happy. But talking with the other panel members about how many books we’ve purchased and how many author signatures we’ve procured, really makes me realize that it’s a win/win situation. Authors write great books for my reading pleasure. I buy the books and attend the signings, not only for my own benefit, but to show my support and admiration for their work. It’s a great circular effect: they write, I buy, I read, they write again. So here’s to the authors. But also, here’s to the fans.


  1. Most authors say it is all about the fans, without whom they wouldn't write. Very cool panel! I too echo that this was a fabulous conference.

  2. Great post, Kerry! It is all about the fans...

  3. As an author myself, I must agree - it is all about the fans. And we authors inevitably start out as fans. Pity I missed that particular panel. But I did see Mr. Parks on another panel and he is darned funny.

  4. How do I contact you? The Double Life of Tutweiler Buckhead by Miriam Pia is being released. If you love crime fiction, urban fiction and like to get inside the heads of characters you just might love this novel. SBPRA is the publisher. You can find it for sale online from SBPRA. If you get it, read it love it - if you contact me we can work out a deal to get me to sign your copy. All reviews warmly welcome. I'm actually the author, hoping to find those I wrote it for.