Hosting a Bouchercon is FUN!
It is a complex process for sure: Selecting the venue, developing a theme for your event, maintaining the Bouchercon traditions, and getting an all-volunteer team to accept responsibility and visualize with you is tough. The rewards, however, are great: learning the Bouchercon family, meeting the authors and publishers, seeing your dream become a reality, and continuing what will soon be a 50-year tradition provides the Local Operating Committee with a great sense of pride.
What skills do you need? The Bouchercon Chair should be organized, patient, have a kind heart, and be a bit dogmatic to set expectations and to see the responsible parties meet those expectations. It is not mandatory to have a great deal of conference experience or close contacts to the “book world.” It is mandatory is the desire to produce a Bouchercon for the satisfaction of the attendees. The Bouchercon family will step up and will provide you support, advice, and knowledge.
The decision to host a Bouchercon should not be taken lightly. It is a lot of work, a lot of responsibility, and a lot of worry. There will be rough patches along the way–disagreements, rejections by Guests of Honor invitees, and disappointments by committee chairs and members. You will not please everyone so you will need to recognize it is your Convention and be amenable to criticism. You must have a tough skin and listen to many varied opinions, select the best course of action so your dream may come true at your Bouchercon Convention.
The reward for the Bouchercon chair comes when the attendees gather for 4 days to celebrate the mystery genre, meet and greet old friends, discuss new books and topics, and participate in a tradition started by Anthony Boucher and 82 mystery fans gathered in a Santa Monica bar Memorial Day weekend, 1970.
Do not hesitate. Get in touch to begin your journey to know the Bouchercon family and the “book world.” You will not be alone!