Author Bumping - Horror in Pink
It was my first horror writers’ conference. I was jazzed at the thought of rubbing elbows with some of my heroes of horror, both wet and dry. Horror is my first love. I was going to meet with writers who possessed the gift for tormenting their fans with chilling tales. I read the roster of famous and infamous authors, dropped my registration form in the mail, and looked forward to the four day event.
The World Horror and Fantasy Conference was being held in Providence on Halloween weekend. I became afflicted with the “what to wear” syndrome. There would be a main conference, breakout meetings, and a final banquette. I was sure I didn’t possess one single outfit that would work. It was time to shop for something special.
Up until that date (and ever since) I have never owned a single pink garment. I’m not a “pink.” I’m a black or turquoise, never pink. Somewhere between my house and the shops I began to channel someone else. She must have been some fru-fru lady with ringlets in her hair and rosy cheeks. She probably wore five-inch heels and perfume. Whoever she was, she looked like me and used my credit cards. She returned home with a pink dress. It wasn’t just a pink dress, it was sissy-pink with a big lace collar. What was I thinking? I still wonder.
A few days later I arrived at the World Horror Conference, went up to my room, and changed into the dress. I came back down to the Conference ballroom. Everyone was dressed in black. The Los Angeles crowd looked like Tim Burton sketches from Nightmare Before Christmas. I stood out like a wedding cake at a cemetery.
A fairly well-known horror writer started to play eye-hockey with me. He stared. I stared back. He was a guest on a panel discussing blood and gore. He sat high on the dais, but kept sneaking peeks at me. I was a lone “pastel” in a sea of darkness. When the discussion was over, he came to me salivating with curiosity. We sat in the hotel bar and he peppered me with questions about my life. I thought perhaps my natural charm was showing. It never occurred to me that I was such an oddity in pink I might show up as a victim in his next book. I spent the rest of the day under the microscope of other authors of the macabre. One after another they queued up to spend time with me. I was suddenly surprisingly popular in pink.
The following night there came a knock on my hotel room door. Two of the female horror groupies stood there. One placed a crumpled tiara on my head. The other handed me a homemade trophy. They declared me the “Honorary B---ch” of the Conference. “If you weren’t so nice, we’d hate you. Every guy here is following you. It's not fair. Don’t you dare wear pink to another conference!”
I didn’t. I don’t. I promise.
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No... I'm not wearing pink.