The 2016 Killer Nashville Preview Edition

Authors Gone Wild at Killer Nashville

Remember the 1982 thriller-chiller “Poltergeist”  and its tagline scene?

The little girl is staring at the “snow” on the television screen (click here if you’re young and don’t know snow) and the blank screen is flashing. Flickering lights and images reach out of the TV and everything in the bedroom starts shaking, waking her parents. The little girl turns her head. “They’re heereee!”

Indeed they are. They’re here! Yes, 276 authors – some with national and international bestsellers to their credit – will be in Franklin, Tennessee, this weekend for the 11th annual 2016 Killer Nashville Writers Conference. Activities begin Thursday, August 18, and run through Sunday the 21st at Embassy Suites in Franklin.

Guests of Honor this year are Janet Evanovich and Kevin O’Brien, and prolific author Robert J. Randisi will receive the 2016 John Seigenthaler Legends Award, just to mention a few of the honorees.

A really cool twist in this year’s program announced by KN founder Clay Stafford is the addition of the Killer Nashville BookCon hosted by Parnassus Books. It is free and open to the public, and authors will be on hand throughout the weekend to sign books. There are other opportunities to have lunch or dinner with the authors. Call 615-599-4032 for info.

DAY2 KN AI am going to be on a couple of Friday morning panels with several very talented authors. The photo at left is after one of my 2015 panel discussions.

The 2016 panels are going to be even better. Up first Friday, from 10-11 a.m., is “Building Your Network At Killer Nashville Interactive” workshop that focuses on the actual building of a network of writers, editors, agents, etc. at KN 2016 to help promote each other’s work through blog tours, social media, and other innovative technologies that allow for collaborative marketing. Joining me are session host Linda Sands plus Kay Kendall, Bryan Robinson and Linda Thorne. Like me, Linda Thorne is a Nashville-based author and an active member of the local chapter of Sisters in Crime.

Following that session, I will be discussing part of a “How To Write Effective Plot Twists Discussion” and activity focused on crafting effective and surprising plot twists. Linda Thorne is the host of this session and we’ll be joined by Sharon Potts and Ray Wenck.

If you’re a fan of any these authors and the thriller / mystery / suspense genres, I’d urge you to attend. You can get the complete schedule here.

Coming Up: I’ll be at the Decatur Book Festival in Atlanta over Labor Day weekend, then will be appearing at three other major events in October.

On October 1-2, I will be with nine other Nashville authors making an appearance at Fall Fest at the Hermitage. It’s a great event with food, festivities, music and many more vendors. I’ll share more information next month when it gets closer, but I’m glad I can confirm the event on our schedule. Others confirmed as Fall Fest authors are Blake Fontenay, Iscah, Skip Nipper, Kathy Rhodes and Jaden Terrell. I’ll add more names to the list as soon as I hear back.

The Granddaddy of Nashville book events, of course, is the Southern Festival of Books: A Celebration of the Written Word, set for October 14-16 and sponsored by Humanities Tennessee. It’s always a special weekend, and I hope to see you there. Look for the Sisters in Crime – Middle Tennessee booth as well as the Authors Circle booth. That’s where I’ll be located this year, along with several of Nashville’s top thriller and mystery writers, including Jaden Terrell, Robert Mangeot, Alana White, Lisa Wysocky and many, many others.

Then on October 22, look for our merry band of authors at the Jack Daniels World Championship Invitational Barbecue in Lynchburg, Tennessee. Confirmed for this event so far are Jaden Terrell, R.D. Sherrill, Bill Holley and Keith Bartlett. More on them next month.

Help out a fellow writer: Nashville author Alan Lewis needs your help. He’s started a GoFundMe campaign to offset bills for an upcoming medical procedure. He’s a really good guy and I hope you’ll help him out. The goal is $4,800, and almost $3,000 has been donated in just nine days. If you can help with a small donation, it will be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance!

TV talk: “Nashville” creator / producer / director Callie Khouri was a fabulous speaker at the Script-Com 2016 screenwriters symposium on Saturday, June 25. The show has moved from ABC to CMT and Hulu for its fifth season – which will begin taping in early September with a reported launch date of early December. Many of you know this, but I was an extra on “Nashville” for all four seasons, and I have written often about my experiences on the show. In the May 27 edition of The Ledger, I wrote about the show’s cancellation and how it affected some of my fellow background actors. Click here to read their remembrances.

BOOK DISPLAYLooking forward: Great news. You can now get copies of Vendetta Stone and books by other local authors at Picture This creat!ve framing & ga//ery in Hermitage, Tennessee. Owner Matt Fischer is the man responsible for the Fall Fest at the Hermitage, and when I went to meet him and talk about the event, I suggested that his gallery and gift shop would be a great place to carry works by local authors. He agreed, and already has a half-dozen books on display with more to come. Books make great gifts and the holidays are fast approaching. Hope you’ll drop in and check out what Matt’s store has to offer.

As always, thanks for reading.

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