Daisy Bateman

Bouchercon and Done

You want to make a bad business decision? Try hosting a convention of writers in your hotel and closing the bar at midnight. That should do it.

Last weekend Bouchercon, the World Mystery Convention, was held in San Francisco and, aside from the management’s lack of vision with regards to beverage profits, it was an exceptional experience. I could tell you all about the panels, the authors, the massive bag of free books and/or the very stylish but completely impractical design of the hotel,* and maybe I’ll get to that. But first, let’s talk about the shoes.

The Puccis I Didn’t Pack

My shoes, of course. As promised, I packed an entire separate suitcase for them, plus the overflow that made it in the main suitcase. I had to make some tough calls, like leaving behind my beloved Puccis, and most (but not all) of my boots. And, of course, anything with any claim to sense or comfort.

Would have been perfect, if I didn’t have heels

Actually, that’s not entirely true. I did try (and fail) to have comfortable shoes, by wearing my black flats for the trip over. I had to do something, because the first part of my plan was to drop off my car at the shop in SOMA where it’s getting a new engine (long story**), walk from there to BART and take the train to the Embarcadero, where the conference hotel was located. Unfortunately, what I had forgotten was that I didn’t have heel padding in those flats, which meant that my freakishly nobby heels rubbed with every step, which meant that I was blistered before I even started.

This shoe thing, you have to be tough.

(Continued after the jump.)

Obviously, as soon as I got to the hotel, checked in, found my room, realized it smelled of cigarette smoke and failed to do anything about it, I had to change into something a little more sensibly ridiculous.

I need more occasions to wear these

I believe in starting strong.

Thursday was spent mostly wandering around, going through my giant bag of free books, finding people who couldn’t casually stroll out of my way fast enough and attending one (interactive) panel, where I penned the immortal first line, “Even the best sunblock can only do so much.” There were people there I hadn’t seen in a while, due to New Hampshire and babies, people I’d seen recently but was happy to see again, and people I didn’t actually, technically know except for following them on twitter. It was all very exciting and social, and after about three hours I needed a nap.

In the evening there was an awards ceremony, which I stuck around for a little while, until it became clear they weren’t going to give me anything, then decamped for the bar.

A little too much? Or still not enough?

By this time, I should note, I had changed into the Prada sandals you see to the left. They are perhaps a little summery for October, but we were having a warm spell. Later on, in the other bar, Sophie borrowed one and waved it in the air, causing men to appear as if by magic. Truly, one should never underestimate the power of Prada.

*Yes, it’s very nice that you have a huge central atrium with the glass elevators at the focus point, but don’t you think you might have wanted more than five of them for your (approx) 2000 rooms? And that maybe you should space them so that some of the rooms are not a twenty minute hike out? And that your walkways should be wide enough for two people to pass each other? Also, what’s the deal with closing the bar so early?
**Short version: Still a long story.
***I was going to put the whole convention in one post, but this is clearly going to go longer than that. I wore a lot of shoes.

5 thoughts on “Bouchercon and Done”

  1. Love the gold sandals… I say with the summer we have had you got to talk the warm weather shoe opportunities when you can. Can't wait to read about the rest of the conference.

  2. The only consolation about the bar closing at midnight is that you could continue to DRINK in the lobby until 2 am (people made beverage runs) – at which point a very nice man literally came by and confiscated open bottles. And don't even start on what time they locked the restrooms.

    Impressive shoes! I'll admit I brought only three pairs, which included serviceable sneakers and sandals I never wore.

  3. Alice– Thanks. I should probably get on that before I forget all the good stuff.

    Sara– Beverage runs!? I totally should have thought of that. Now I'm just regretting that I gave up so soon.

    Mary– I totally should have packed them, shouldn't I?

    Scott– Bummer! I really needed to do a better job of keeping an eye out for people. Less napping probably would have helped.


Leave a Comment