NOLA ParaCon, a half-day literary festival featuring one dozen local paranormal romance writers and editors, will be from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 23, at the East Bank Regional Library, 4747 W. Napoleon, Metairie. The festival is free and is open to the public. Registration is not required.
Paranormal romance is a subgenre of romantic fiction and speculative fiction. It includes elements beyond the range of scientific explanation – frequently ghosts, vampires, shapeshifters, werewolves, and time travel - blending together themes from the genres of fantasy, science fiction and horror. Paranormal romances are one of the fastest growing trends in the romance genre.
NOLA ParaCon Agenda
10 a.m. - Welcome
10:15 - 11:00 a.m. - Indie Awesome: Indie Publishing 101
Authors: Amanda Lanclos and Roux Cantrell; Moderator: Gillian Zane
Authors: Amanda Lanclos and Roux Cantrell; Moderator: Gillian Zane
11:15 a.m. - 12:00 noon - Cliches in Paranormal: Too Much, or Not Enough?
Authors: Eden Butler, Julie Wetzel and Alexandra Weis; Moderator: Lila Felix
Lunch Break 12:00 noon - 12:45 p.m.
12:45 - 1:30 p.m. - Crossing Those Wicked Genre Lines
Authors: Pamela Kopfler and Juliette Cross; Moderator: Dawn Chartier
1:45 - 2:30 p.m. - Realism in Fiction, Blending the Real with the Paranormal. Authors: Sarach Tolcser and Marita Crandle; Moderator: Alys Arden
Alys Arden lives in New Orleans. “The Casquette Girls” is her first novel. Alys Arden was raised by the street performers, tea leaf-readers and glittering drag queens of the New Orleans French Quarter. She cut her teeth on the streets of New York and has worked around the world. One dreary day in London, she missed home and started writing “The Casquette Girls.” Her debut novel garnered more than one million reads online before it was acquired by Skyscape in a two-book deal.
Eden Butler is an editor and writer of fantasy, mystery and contemporary romance novels. She is the nine-times great-granddaughter of an English pirate which she says might explain her affinity for rule-breaking and rum. When she's not writing or wondering about her possibly Jack Sparrowesque ancestor, Eden patiently waits for her Hogwarts letter, edits, reads and spends time watching rugby, “Doctor Who” and New Orleans Saints football.
Roux Cantrell is the author of three novels in the Enforcers Series: “Guarded,” “Vowed” and “No Bounds.” “Second Chances” is expected to be published this month. She lives on the North Shore.
Dawn Chartier grew up in New Orleans where her parents owned a bookshop. She came to writing later in life. She sold her second book, a contemporary erotic romance titled “Diamonds.” She also authored “Not An Angel,” a Poryria Vampire Novel Book One, in 2012. She lives near New Orleans.
Marita Woywod Crandle has been writing and storytelling since she was a little girl. She has always had a fancy for the magical side of life, making New Orleans, with its very creative atmosphere, a perfect match for this German transplant. Marita is currently working on a novel dedicated to French Quarter legends, the Carter Brothers, and the book “Drinking Mistakes,” her memoir as a Bourbon Street bartender. Marita has also written the holiday children’s book “Rufus, the Yuletide Bat,” available at her gift store.
Juliette Cross says the moment she read Jane Eyre as a teenager, she fell in love with the Gothic romance and even then, she wanted to create her own. She has written at least a dozen novels, including “The Vessel Trilogy,” “Dominion,” “The Nightwing Series,” “Vale of Stars” series, and the “Vampire Blood” series.
Lila Felix refused to go to kindergarten after the teacher made her take a nap on the first day of school. She staged her first protest in middle school. She almost flunked out of her first semester at Pepperdine University because she was enthralled with their library and frequently was locked in it. Now her husband and three children have to put up with her rebel nature in Louisiana where her days are filled with cypress trees, crawfish, and her books and writing. She writes about the ordinary people who fall extraordinarily in wild, true love.
Pamela Kopfler was unemployed and living in the rural south. She said she took stock of her skills and thought the only one of any use was writing. She compiled the stories she’d told on the NPR member station and published “In-laws, Outlaws, Friends and Foes” with Pelican Publishing Company. Kopfler said she had so much fun writing the stories, she offered workshops on writing anecdotal stories at area conferences, club meetings and local libraries. She’s now writing novels.
Amanda Lanclos is from a small town near Baton Rouge. She is the author of at least 10 works including the “Wounded Souls” series and the “Unwavering Faith” series. She says she has always been a huge fan of books and reading, and is now doing what she always loved about other authors: she is writing to help others escape real life, just as these authors have done for her.
Sarah Tolcser lives in New Orleans, where she “wrangles iPads and rogue computers at her day job.” A graduate of St. Lawrence University, she double majored in writing and philosophy. She enjoys video games, NBA basketball, and books about girls who blow up stuff. Sarah writes young adult fantasy and science fiction. Her first book “Song of the Current” was released this past summer; Booklist said: “First-time author Tolcser has created a hearty sea adventure, laced with romance and fantasy.”
Alexandrea Weis was raised in the motion picture industry and began writing stories at the age of eight. In college she studied nursing and went on to teach at a local university. After several years in the medical field, she wrote her first novel, “To My Senses.” Since that time she has published many novels.
Gillian Zane is an Amazon bestselling author specializing in dark genre fiction for adults. She defines herself by the city she was raised in, New Orleans. She’s tried moving away a few times but always comes back. At the age of ten, she decided she would be a writer and has been determined ever since. She has served in the military, worked as a bartender, became a cog in the corporate marketing wheel as a person “that makes things pretty” and has been laid off too many times to count. She currently writes full-time, but still continues to “make things pretty” by designing book covers and websites for her fellow authors and bloggers.
For more information regarding this event, contact Chris Smith, Manager of Adult Programming for the library, at 504-889-8143 or email@example.com.
Louisiana Book News is written by journalist Chere Dastugue Coen, who writes Louisiana romances and paranormal mysteries under the pen name of Cherie Claire. The first books in her award-winning series are FREE as ebooks! For more information and to sign up for her newsletter visit www.cherieclaire.net.