Last month, I found myself in beautiful downtown St. Petersburg, FL at the historic Vinoy Renaissance Hotel attending the 49th Annual Bouchercon, or The Anthony Boucher Memorial World Mystery Convention, 2018. I’ll be honest, for a big reader, I’d never heard of the World Mystery Convention, but since it was close to home, I decided to attend.
I soon learned that Anthony Boucher (1911-1968) was a science fiction editor, author of mystery novels and mystery reviewer. He helped found the Mystery Writers of America in 1946. The conference was named after him, as well as the Anthony Awards for outstanding crime fiction.
Each year the event is held in a different city. The conference was sold out, writers and fans there to spend four days meeting authors, attending writing panels and listening to popular authors speak about their work. Speakers from here in the U.S. and around the world represented the genre, happy to discuss the craft of writing as well as their books. I discovered new authors as well as getting to see those whose books I already love to read. The panels featured authors who write PI series, police procedurals, amateur sleuths, and cozy mysteries, to name a few.
So what did I come away with?
That I'm an accessory to excessive reading.
Fast forward to this month.
It’s time to visit Christmas Town, Maine again! This year, there are 12 books celebrating a wedding and the restoration of a carousel, leading up to Christmas Eve. My book, Our Christmas Promise, is part of A Christmas Wedding story.
Melissa Upton and Justin Caswell have been best friends since they were kids. Now, they’re all grown up and things have changed, for Melissa at least. She’s content running the family bridal shop, Candlelight and Lace. Excited about an upcoming wedding. She doesn’t even mind attending weddings with Justin, until he dubs them wedding buddies. And now that he’s back in Christmas Town, Melissa realizes she wants more. If she goes after her heart will she lose her best friend?
Justin is back home to take care of business for his estranged father while he recovers from a heart attack. He’s launched his own successful career, is happy with his single status. Until he feels the distance Melissa has put between them. What’s up with his best friend? The more time they spend together, involved in Christmas Town holiday preparations, the more he realizes she’s hoping for more in their relationship. Can Justin see that being in love, and remaining best friends, is the best of both worlds?
If you’ve visited Christmas Town before, I hope you return this year for new stories filled with romance and family. Visit www.heartwarmingchristmastown.com for more details.
Tara Randel is an award-winning, USA Today bestselling author of nineteen novels. Family values, a bit of mystery and, of course, love and romance, are her favorite themes, because she believes love is the greatest gift of all. Look for her Harlequin Heartwarming romance, THE LAWMAN’S SECRET VOW, available now and her Christmas Town holiday romance, OUR CHRISTMAS PROMISE, available October 9, 2018. Visit Tara at www.tararandel.com. Like her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TaraRandelBooks.