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  • Writer's pictureCandace Nola

THOUGHTS ON AUTHORCON 2023


AuthorCon was truly another incredible experience. Seeing old friends, making new ones, vibing on the good energy that was the con, seeing smiles and joy on every face. This was my second time, and it’s hard to believe that it’s been a year since the last one.




In 2022-I was terrified to speak on my first panel ever. This year, I asked Brian Keene for approval to host one of my own. I moderated it, created the topic, and invited the panelists. I chose to do a panel on something very close to my heart, Trauma in Fiction. My panelists included Kristopher Triana, Bridgett Nelson, Lucas Milliron, Kristopher Rufty, Sam Richard and expert guest speaker Marian Echevarria from the Mothers of Mayhem podcast. I was incredibly proud of this panel for the openness they each were willing to display.


Tears were shed. The room was full, and I conquered one of my biggest fears in life. All in one hour. My deepest thanks and gratitude to these speakers for joining me in this panel, it was more than a discussion for me. It was a life-changing moment.

In 2022-I felt like an unknown, a rookie in the business, and was too shy and awkward to talk to very many people.


This year, I talked to damn near every person I passed. In a surreal turn of events, the vast majority of them already knew who I was and were excited to meet me! I will never get over that feeling. It’s been a privilege and an honor to meet so many people who have become fans of my work.


In 2022-I came home with memories, books, and more genuine connections than I had ever thought possible. This year, triple that. For me, AuthorCon is family. It’s love, care, and compassion. It’s pure light and energy. It is people gathered for a common cause to support others that need our help. At the same time, we honored two of our own that had passed on, and presented a new award to one of our own that exemplifies what Jay Wilburn and Dave Thomas stood for. That award went to Jonathan Janz, who is a constant source of light and guidance to this community.


This event is more than book sales for those that attend. It’s about showing who we are and what we stand for. It’s about appreciating our readers, our fans, and our legends. It’s about honoring those that came before us and those that are just starting their journey.


I am still too overwhelmed to process all that happened, but to everyone that I met for the first time, just know it was my honor. To my friends, my family, my inner circle; you all already know how I feel about you and about spending this time with you. You each inspire me daily and motivate me to do better, to BE better.


To the Scares That Care board- you are incredible humans, and I am proud to know you and honored to support this organization.




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