Well, it appears I pulled it off! Despite some last minute cancellations and new attendees, the Murder Mystery Weekend was a rousing success. (If I do say so myself).
Friday night, those of us staying the weekend gathered at a local bar/nightclub to see a comedy concert.
Saturday, my gal pals and I went shopping for a few party supplies and got our nails done. They even helped me get the meeting room set up and decorated before we joined our guys in the hotel's hot tub. Then we grabbed dinner at the restaurant next door before dashing back to our rooms to get ready for the main event.
It was totally awesome watching everyone arrive, decked out in their 1980's best. And everyone really got into playing their roles, which was a blast. I wrote it with the idea that the participants were to improvise their parts based on the information in their clues, and did they ever! High school was never this much fun for me!
I had love triangles, love children, a catfight, and practically fisticuffs. All the ladies kept getting hit on by folks that weren't really supposed to be interested in their characters--including me! My character was, by the way, a photographer--I must've snapped a few hundred pictures. I borrowed a friend's camera, and cannot wait to see the photos.
Everyone said they had a fabulous time, and are already asking when I'll be doing the next one. It was great seeing my work come to life, better hanging with my good friends, and awesome making new friends. But the best was knowing that everyone had a good time.
I learned a few lessons along the way, too:
1) Just write a basic draft and leave it be until the commitment deadline. Save any rewrites for the week of the event.
2) Send packs of vitamins to all attendees, so no one ends up in the hospital the week of the event (It's happened two years running).
3) Try not to be such a damn control freak and let people help out.
4) It really doesn't have to be perfect . . . really.