Pictures from the World Horror Convention in New Orleans

Hello. I am not as cranky as this picture suggests. Stick with me and I promise to smile.

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This is my Bitchy Resting Face

A week ago I was in New Orleans for the

Bram Stoker Awards Weekend incorporating World Horror Convention

— which for brevity’s sake I’ll refer to as WHC.

I stayed at the convention venue: the Hotel Monteleone in the French Quarter. My friend and fellow writer, Eliza Hirsch, shared a room.

I arrived Wednesday night with no trouble–unlike Eliza, whose flight was canceled, but that’s her story to tell. I rode the Airport Shuttle into the French Quarter, checked in to the hotel, dropped off my stuff, and went in search of a grocery store. I was going on an all day tour the following morning and I’d been told there wouldn’t be time to stop for food, so I stocked up on bread, blueberry preserves, peanut butter, and a lot of fruit. There was a minor incident when my bag fell off the counter while I was paying and the jar of preserves shattered inside the bag, but the kind staff replaced the jar and I only had to spend a little time washing blueberry paste off my bananas.

The weather was clear during my excursion, humid, and hot. I assembled my lunch for the next day, had a cocktail in the hotel bar (it spins slowly, hence the name Carousel) and went to bed.

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A dim view of the Carousel Bar at Hotel Monteleone
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A Vieux Carre at the Hotel Monteleone

Thursday morning I ate breakfast in the hotel restaurant, Criollo–a delicious egg white omelet filled with vegetables and a spicy tomato sauce, plus lots of coffee. Then I caught the tour bus and we headed out to the Laura Plantation.

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Front of Laura — a Creole Plantation, comprehensive info here
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Inside of one of the Laura Plantation slave quarters where folklorists recorded the Br’er Rabbit tales

Soon enough we were on our way to the swamp. I had arranged for a six-person airboat tour of the swamp, but lucked out. Only four of us were on the boat.

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Waiting for my turn on the airboat. Not pictured: slathering on sunscreen.
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My view on the airboat
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“Airboat Self-Portrait” is the name of my next band
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Our guide feeds marshmallows to a gator
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Spanish Moss is not a moss. It is related to the pineapple.
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A final stop in the marsh, talking about collecting gator eggs

Overall I really enjoyed the airboat swamp tour. I compared notes with some folks who took the regular flat-bottomed boat and they interacted with more wildlife, but the ride through the swamp was exhilarating.

Time passes. I meet up with my roommate and go on a ghost tour. Buy one Hurricane, get one free…

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We were in the Beast group
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“Creepy Jesus Shadow”

After the tour was over, Eliza and I took a brief walk down Bourbon Street. Thankfully, no pictures exist of that excursion.

The next morning (Friday) I went to a useful workshop about marketing taught by Matt Schwartz. And then I went to panels and readings.

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Lisa Morton interviews John Joseph Adams
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Selling Your Short Story Panel: Simon McCaffery, Ellen Datlow, Norman Prentiss, John Joseph Adams
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Caitlín R. Kiernan is interviewed by Angel Leigh McCoy

Dinner was at a Paris-style place. I enjoyed the Shrimp Creole and a Bloody Mary. Then I returned for more.

Eliza and I dressed up for the dance.

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Eliza looking lovely
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Me goofing around

Next day more panels and readings. And a Kaffeeklatsch with Caitlín R. Kiernan.

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Robert McCammon, reading
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Kaffeeklatsch: Caitlín R. Kiernan (Best two and a half hours of the con)

For lunch I joined a group at Mr. B’s for seafood gumbo and a Bloody Mary.

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Caitlín R. Kiernan, reading

Eliza and I took a break to go to the Voodoo Museum with a stop at the Faulkner House and another for daiquiris.

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Voodoo Museum
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Voodoo dolls
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Offerings at the Voodoo Museum

That evening I went to the Bram Stoker Awards, but I was too busy telling jokes and stuffing my face to take crummy camera phone pics.

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Eliza and I went to see fellow writer Sanford Allen play a gig with his band Hogbitch at Checkpoint Charlie’s

Sunday morning arrived fast. As an aside, I ate almost every breakfast at Café Beignet. Fabulous Cajun Hashbrowns and omelets.

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Advice for New Writers Panel: K. Trap Jones, Liz Gorinsky, L. L. Soares, Yvonne Navarro, Rena Mason

I also went to the dialogue panel but didn’t take a photo. Too busy scribbling notes.

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The Future of Writing Panel: Peter Giglio, Jason V Brock, Alexandra Sokoloff, William F. Nolan

After the closing ceremonies I joined up with some cool people, ate lunch, walked around and imbibed a lot–including a stop at Pat O’Brien’s for a Hurricane. Also, absinthe.

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At The Olde Absinthe House, the bartender prepares our drinks
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My glass of Mata Hari absinthe. Very tasty. The anise was subtle.

Sunday night also involved a snack at Daisy Duke’s and a lot of packing. Monday morning I caught a shuttle to the airport and had an uneventful trip home.

Can’t wait for next year in Portland, OR!

Link:

Pictures from the World Horror Convention in New Orleans

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