Sara and I went to Context 23 and had a phenomenal time. I finally got to meet many of the folks behind Hiram Grange, including the man who started it all, Tim Deal; fellow Hiram Grange writers Scott Christian Carr and Kevin Lucia; fellow Shroud authors Sheldon Higdon and D. Harlan Wilson. I got to exchange books with D. Harlan Wilson (I got the phenomenal short story collection They Had Goat Heads).
I was awarded the Hiram Award for Most Unpleasant to Monkeys (Admittedly, I mounted a shameless stealth campaign to win votes from the members of the Academy.)
But the highlight of the weekend, indeed of the year, was the special leather-bound edition of Hiram Grange and the Digital Eucharist that I got from Danny Evarts. Danny was responsible for editing my novella, as well as creating the awesome woodcuts that adorn each chapter. He also created the Awesome Chimp HeadTM that graces the back cover of the book. (I scored the original print from the printer’s block!)
On Saturday evening, during a short lull in the Shroud Publishing Party, glasses were filled with absinthe and the present Hiram conspirators (Richard and Malcolm were there in spirit) raised a glass to all that had been accomplished. As we discussed Hiram Grange’s past and his future, Danny surprised each author with a leather-bound copy of his book.
I was practically rendered mute by the awesomeness of the moment.
Needless to say, this book is now the favorite volume in my collection.
More on Context 23 later…