Raising a Glass to the Best Bloody Conference Ever! ~ by Donna Carrick

June 14 Bloody Words Panel on SettingsWhat do you call 250 Canadian Crime Writers at the Toronto Hyatt Regency in June?

A Bloody Blast, that’s what!

Chaired by our own Mme Cheryl Freedman (aka She Who Must Be Obeyed), featuring Canadian Guest of Honour Vicki Delany, and with most of our Mesdames in attendance, the 2014 Bloody Words Conference was, arguably, one of the best Writers’ Conferences ever held in our fair city.

Before the Conference even began, we were thrilled to enjoy “An Evening With Arthur”, at the formal Arthur Ellis Awards Banquet on June 5. Several of our Mesdames attended this Crime Writers of Canada function, including the evening’s MC and our current Chair of CWC, Mme Vicki Delany.

The Goddaughter's Revenge, Melodie CampbellWe were flying proud when Mme Melodie Campbell was presented with the Arthur Award for Best Crime Novella for her hysterically funny caper: The Goddaughter’s Revenge. If you don’t have your copy, be sure to line it up for your summer vacation!

(Below, Top)Toronto’s prestigious Arts and Letters Club provided a glittering venue for our CrimeLit ladies and gents. Here you see Vicki Delany, Robin Harlick, Howard Engels (who was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award that evening!) and Cheryl Freedman.

(Below, Bottom, Left) On Melodie’s far left is Vicki Delany, immediate left is Lou Allin, on her right, Arthur Ellis Chair Cheryl Freedman and of course, the Hanged Man himself!

(Below, Bottom, Right) Long-time supporter of Canadian Crime Writing, artist and former Crime Reviewer Don Graves presents Melodie with a fabulous landscape from his collection!

June 14 BLOG AE BW 1
Thirteen, an anthology of Crime StoriesThe Mesdames made a terrific showing this year, receiving TWO nominations in the Best Short Crime Story category for our anthology titled THIRTEEN:
The Emerald Skull by Sylvia Maultash Warsh
Watermelon Weekend by Donna Carrick

And, speaking of Awards, Mme Joan O’Callaghan also made the very short-list as a runner-up for the Bony Pete Award, for her story Runaway!

We were thrilled to also raise a cheer for Mesdames’ founder Madeleine (M.H.) Callway, whose debut novel Windigo Fire will be released by Seraphim Editions, Fall 2014. Kudos to you, Mad!

(Below, left to right)Donna Carrick, Sylvia Maultash Warsh, Sylvia’s daughter Jessica, and husband, Jerry, Lynne Murphy, Joan O’Callaghan, Ed Callway, our Mesdames’ founder Madeleine (M.H). Callway herself, and Lynne Murphy.

On Friday, June 6, (at high noon, no less) our CrimeWriters of Canada Board met for a wonderful lunch, hosted by former President Robin Harlick.

Below, from the left: Jill Downie, Vicki Delany, Linda Wiken, Melodie Campbell, Donna Carrick, Alison Bruce, Cathy Ace, Phyllis Smallman, Robin Harlick, Peter Kirby.
June 14 BLOG AE BW 3
As the Bloody Words Conference began in earnest, the schmoozing and laughter could be heard in every corridor.

(Below, Top, from left)Canadian Guest of Honour Vicki Delany in full Fiona flair for the banquet, Jane Burfield, John Thompson, Joan O’Callaghan.
(Below, Bottom, from left)First picture includes four previous-year finalists for the Un-hanged Arthur Award: Lois Gordon, Gloria Ferris, Madeleine Harris-Callway, Kristina Stanley. Next: Mel Bradshaw, Donna Carrick, International Guest of Honour Michael Jecks, John Kenney, Lynne Murphy, Joan O’Callaghan, Sylvia Maultash Warsh.

And, of course, this fine Conference is known for its world-class panels. There were numerous writers of distinction speaking on various aspects of the Crime genre.

(Below, Top, from left)Rosemary McCracken, Joan O’Callaghan, Cathy Astolfo
(Middle)Cathy with her full panel.
(Below, Bottom, from left)Dorothy (D.J.) McIntosh, Rosemary M’s panel, including Jake Doherty, Rosemary Aubert.

What is a Writers’ Conference without some good old silly fun? Our authors explore how far they will go in the quest for cover recognition, pounding the catwalk at the Books With Legs event!

Our newest Mme Lisa de Nikolits struts her latest title The Witchdoctor’s Bones. Vicki Delany sports her work Under Cold Stone, and the lovely Melissa Yi dons her book Terminally Ill.

NOTE: Byline Photo features the Bloody Words Panel on Settings. Left to Right: Lisa de Nikolits, Moderator Donna Carrick, Elizabeth J. Duncan, Maureen Jennings, International Guest of Honour Michael Jecks.

ALL PHOTOS courtesy of: Donna Carrick, Lisa de Nikolits, Cathy Astolfo.

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2 Responses to Raising a Glass to the Best Bloody Conference Ever! ~ by Donna Carrick

  1. Great article about a great conference

  2. Thank you, Rosemary. It was certainly great to chat with you there!

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