I've belonged to the Los Angeles Chapter of Sisters in Crime for years. I joined in the first place so I could participate in the booksignings at the L.A. Times Book Festival. I did that for about four years. Loved it, met new authors, saw some old friends, and sold books.
Last time hubby and I went, finding the right parking lot at UCLA, hiking up and down the hills with a cart full of books two days in a row turned out to be a great deal of effort for two old duffers like us. Though we enjoyed ourselves, we decided that was the last time we'd participate. Of course now the venue has changed to the USC campus, but at our age neither one of us wants to find out if it will be any easier.
Another thing, SinCLA has been doing is arranging mystery panels at various libraries. I thought that would be a fun thing to do. I'd been on lots of panels at conferences and enjoyed doing that so I signed up. When I got the call to be in a panel at the Buena Vista Branch of the Burbank Library I thought that was doable.
Hubby and I left at 9 a.m. last Saturday, set the Magellan for the address of the library and got on the road. We made it down there about an hour early, found a good parking place, and since we hadn't stopped to eat, we indulged in a hot dog and chips from a convenient stand right outside the library. The day was warm, we ate our lunch while seated on a bench, but went inside when through the enjoy the air conditioning.
The door to the meeting room was unlocked 1/2 early. A nice crowd gathered as the panelist filtered in.
The panel was called, "The Grim Reaper – Lies, Sex, and the Dark Side of Murder". The other panelists were Eric Stone, Jeri Westerson, Jeff Sherratt and Stephen Schwartz. Eric served as a most able moderator.
I enjoy being on panels and love answering the questions even when my books don't exactly fit into the title of the discussion--I get to stretch my brain to come up with an appropriate answer. I also like the questions from the audience. The whole process is energizing to me.
Book sales were not wonderful, I sold two books and those were to the bookstore. No one else did particularly well either. I also donated two books to the library.
Another plus, for ages now I've been telling folks that I've published nearly 30 books. One of the audience members went on line and found my webpage and counted all my books. From now on I'll be saying I've over 30 books published.
From Burbank, we braved the Ventura Freeway and headed up to Oxnard where we visited our two daughters and their families.
So, I've now participated in a SinCLA panel--and drawn a line through that item on my Bucket List.