Mr. Smith and I attended the gala Bram Stokers Award Banquet. Photo courtesy of S. Kay Nash.
How can I possibly express what it was like to be at StokerCon 2016?
The best of the horror community walked the halls, mingling with the up-and-comers. It was a blur of friends, new and old. There were workshops teeming with more information than could possibly be absorbed in the time allotted. The panels were full of audience participation, demonstrating what a close knit community of writers and authors the Horror Writers Association remains.
Set all this collaboration and cooperation into the glittering Flamingo Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. The result was a singular experience–exhausting, invigorating, thrilling–and nothing will ever compare.
There will be other StokerCons. The next one is already set to take place in 2017 aboard the Queen Mary in California, but this one will always remain at the top of the list. Mostly, it’s because it was the first StokerCon and must, by the mysterious powers of numbers, remain in the number one spot. It will also remain in the top because the horror community demonstrated that, despite growing pains, we remain together.
Words are my livelihood, but sometimes a picture can express things an exhausted writer can’t. Tonight, I take the easy route and share the images I caught over the past week. Please enjoy while I go finish unpacking.
Last May I attended the final World Horror Convention that the Horror Writers Association would be a part of. Next year will be the historic beginning of something new —StokerCon.
The Bram Stoker awards are like the Grammys for the horror genre. Attending this upcoming event next year will be something to remember—like seeing the ball drop in Times Square for the first time.
Mr. Smith and I will be attending StokerCon in Las Vegas and May can’t come quick enough. There are still tickets left for this event. Whether you read, write or watch the genre, this event is worth saving up for. Hitchhike if you have to. StokerCon in Las Vegas baby!
From the HWA Facebook: On May 9, 2015, in her opening speech for the Bram Stoker Awards® Ceremony at the Atlanta Marriott Marquis Hotel, HWA President Lisa Morton announced that the Horror Writers Assn. was amicably separating from joint World Horror Conventions with the World Horror Society every other year.
The HWA would instead hold its own annual event; the first one would be hosted in Las Vegas, Nevada, at The Flamingo Hotel—StokerCon2016®. The first Guest of Honor for the event would be R.L. Stine. The following year, the event will be held in Long Beach, California with its first Guest of Honor, George R.R. Martin—StokerCon2017®.
Our current Guests of Honor are
R.L. Stine (Goosebumps series, Fear Street series, Eye Candy)
Our Toastmaster Stephen Jones-Editor (Year’s Best New Horror, Zombie Apocalypse!: Washington Deceased)
The organization will continue the tradition of the Bram Stoker Awards banquet and ceremony and continue to further its constant efforts to promote horror, but the main focus of the brand name StokerCon® is education, encompassing many fields in the genre.
Horror University is the brainchild of Co-Chair RJ Cavender. StokerCon’s Horror University will be a collection of more than a dozen intensive, hands-on writing Workshops taught by best-selling and award-winning writers along with Presentations, Contests, Scholarships, and so much more yet to be announced.
A quick note for those who like their writing and reading dark: now is the perfect time to join the Horror Writer’s Association! Because of the pro-rated dues schedule, membership just prices dropped—$37 as an Active/Affiliate/Academic/Associate member or $27 as a Supporting member for the rest of the year.
HWA is the best thing I ever did for myself as an author. It’s like a non-dysfunctional family—the more experienced authors are happy to guide the newbies. There is a strong sense within the HWA community that the stronger the parts, the stronger the whole.
In the short time since I’ve joined I’ve benefitted: I’ve had the honor of having one of my poems selected for publication in an upcoming electronic chapbook featuring poets from the second HWA Horror Poetry Showcase, great exposure. I’ve taken advantage of the mentor program, which is worth the pittance of a fee alone, but with so many great advantages of joining I still find the most valuable benefit is the community.
Having a large group of like minded people like HWA behind you, pushing you to to do your best and enjoying your efforts is an amazing experience. If you love the horror genre, either creating or absorbing it, I advise you to join this community and meet me in Las Vegas next May for the first ever StokerCon 🙂
From Lisa Morton, HWA President: (If you) haven’t yet joined HWA, today’s a great day to do it because our pro-rated dues schedule means prices dropped today – just $37 as an Active/Affiliate/Academic/Associate member or $27 as a Supporting member for the rest of 2015. Remember, you get access to our monthly Newsletter, our Mentor Program (which is now ready to take new writers!), our book promotional opportunities, local chapter events, our Grievance Committee, our discounts page, and so much more.
UPDATE: StokerCon tickets are now for sale and the official website is LIVE! Tickets are just $99 until June 5th. I predict StokerCon will sell out. Details at StokerCon2016.org!
Remember when I talked about the stunning news of the first ever StokerCon coming next year? Today it was announced on the Horror Writer’s Association Facebook page that registration will begin this weekend! From the page:
For those who missed the announcement, our Guest of Honor Authors so far for StokerCon2016 are: Jack Ketchum, Daniel Knauf, R.L. Stine, Leslie S Klinger, and our toastmaster is Stephen Jones-Editor. Expect Q&As with these guests, as well as readings, workshops, contests, critiques, pitch sessions, parties and the annual Bram Stoker Awards banquet! All of Vegas to entertain you and 500 of your closest friends in the horror business! Mark your calendars now: May 12th-15th, 2016 at The Flamingo!
Watch the StokerCon page for details, save your money and pack your bags – we’re going to Vegas!
The 2015 Bram Stoker awardees—the best in the genre.
HWA President Lisa Morton, made an exciting stir at the start of Saturday’s Bram Stoker Awards ceremony when she announced the launch of StokerCon to be presented solely by the Horror Writers Association.
The first StokerCon will be held at The Flamingo Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, NV on May 12-15, 2016. Acclaimed author R.L. Stine has been confirmed as one of StokerCon 2016’s Guests of Honor.
Watch for more details at the Horror Writer Association’s official website, horror.org. I won’t be missing this!