Good morning bookies! Stand by for news.

*** Have you ever attended a convention for books and/or authors? If so, then you know how much fun they can be, both as a chance to discuss mutual likes (or dislikes) with other fans of the genre, or to listen to favorite authors answer questions on a panel, to be exposed to new ideas…just to be stimulated and given new enthusiasm for something you already love. If you have not been to a convention, make it a goal in 2009 to go and have some fun. I’ll try to keep you updated on some that I think might be fun. And to start off with:

You love mysteries, so there’s great writers to hob-nob with. It’s March, so most of the country is cold, what’s not to like about a Florida beach? The site only has the Guests of Honor currently but usually there is a contingent of Florida writers who show up, Florida having more than its share of great crime writers, and in the end who really cares, anyway. It’s probably a lot warmer in Florida than wherever you are going to be.

If you prefer something a bit more general than a crime convention, and maybe something a bit more northerly, than you might try the Southern Kentucky Festival of Books.

Or, if you are really looking for something big, there’s always the Virginia Festival of the book in Charlottesville.

*** The World Fantasy Awards were announced yesterday at the World Fantasy Convention in Alberta, Canada. I notice some old favorites of mine on the lists, authors I read during the heyday of my SFF reading some 30 years ago. Kim Newman is still around and I loved Anno Dracula and its sequels, real ground-breaking stuff. Good for him!

*** Marilyn Ferguson, a new age author, has died at age 70. The extremely influential 1980 book, The Aquarian Conspiracy, tied together disparate threads of research, such as biofeedback, seeking a comprehensive whole. This gradually coalesced into the New Age Movement.