Today I'm indulging in a flight of fancy - anything to escape the heat and humidity which have suddenly descended on Connecticut.
A couple of days ago, a Jungle Red blogger posted about St. Hilda's Crime and Mystery Conference. held every August in Oxford, England. As I sit fanning myself with a paperback, my thoughts wander into the realm of "what if," as in what if I won the lottery or a rich relative (of which I have none) left me a large legacy.
Normally, I only attend two conferences each year, more for financial reasons than anything else. One is Murder 203, a Connecticut-based event heavily attended by readers as well as writers, and, of course, Crimebake.
But, what if ? Just sit back and fantasize with me.
St Hilda’s is one of the longest running events in the United kingdom -- the first event having been held in 1994. The annual themes have been as diverse as the presenters: “The Queen’s of Crime” (1994); “The Golden Age – There and Now” (1995);“The Historical Mystery” (1996); "Murder in Academia"(1997); “Partners in Crime”(1999); “Mind Games, Psychology, Crime and Mystery” (2000); “The Scene of the Crime” (2001); “A Female of the Species….” (2002); “Absent Friends and Future Loves” (2003); “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” (2005).
This year's conference, Aug. 19 - 21st - is just around the corner, so I'm making my fantasy plans. Obviously,
the only way to get there is on Cunard's Queen Mary II. Seven days of relaxation,gourmet food, and constant pampering on the high seas will definitely put me in the mood. As long as this is my fantasy, I'll be staying in a Princess Grille suite - the one with a private balcony and a butler who assists with unpacking your case and, should you be so inclined, delivers breakfast in bed every morning. And let's not forget the Pillow Concierge -- he's the guy offering nine pillow options and various duvets of your choice.
Cunard has thoughtfully provided a list of 100 things to do on a TransAtlantic crossing, so I don't have to stretch my imagination. So while renewing my wedding vows during a ceremony conducted by the Captain might not work (I am, after all, still single), a string quartet concert, a massage, afternoon tea, Yoga, and a stargazing stroll around the Promenade Deck all fit in nicely with my R&R theme.
The QMII leaves NY on July 27th, so I'll have plenty of of time to attend the Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival, as well. It's July 21-24th, at the Old Swan Hotel in Harrogate, where David Baldacci, Linwood Barclay, Lee Child, Martina Cole, Lisa Gardner, Tess Gerritsen, Dennis Lehane and Howard Marks. among other will be appearing. I can hardly wait to hear them speak!
Okay, that was fun, but now it's time to feed the dog and start dinner. Reality trumps fantasy every time, but it's still fun. Where would mystery writers be without fantasy?
If you could attend any conference, which would you choose? And how would you get there?