One of Edgar Allan Poe’s most famous opening lines has been running through my head lately—increasingly even, as we get closer and closer to this year’s Edgar Awards Banquet: “True! —nervous —very, very dreadfully nervous I had been and am…”
(We’ll skip the rest of the line, since I think (I hope!) it doesn’t apply: “…but why will you say that I am mad?”)
This year is the first time time one of my short stories has been named a finalist for the Edgar: “English 398: Fiction Workshop” appeared in the July/August 2018 issue of Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine and has also been named a finalist for this year’s Agatha Award.
The banquet will be held Thursday, April 25, at the Grand Hyatt in New York, and while I’ve been to the Edgars a couple of times before, I’ve never attended as a finalist, of course, so it’s a much crazier mix of emotions I’m experiencing here within a week of the big day: that nervousness I mentioned but also joy and excitement and anticipation and…. And you think for someone who writes suspense, feeling suspense wouldn’t be so much an issue, right?
In addition to the banquet Thursday night, my wife Tara and I will also be at an earlier cocktail party hosted by our editors at Dell Magazines—both Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine and Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine. Both at the party and at the dinner, we’re looking forward to celebrating the big day with friends from the short mystery fiction world—so many fine writers coming together for one of the biggest events in the mystery writing world.
If you’ll be at the Edgars, I hope to see you there—and to see others at Malice Domestic the following week! But if you won’t make it to either, thanks so much to everyone reading this for all the friendship and support you’ve shown to me and my work. It’s been great to get emails and messages and comments on Facebook and Twitter from readers and fellow writers in recent months. I just can’t tell you how much it all means and how much I appreciate the honor of being a finalist this year for both the Edgar and the Agatha—a dream come true.