I finally bit the bullet and registered for the Writer's Police Academy in September. Terry Odell, mystery writer extraordinaire, over at Terry's Place "introduced" me to Lee Lofland of The Graveyard Shift, author and font of knowledge regarding police procedure.
From the moment I found out about WPA, I've been dying to go. It's three full days of instruction in police procedure; everything from shooting to driving to crime scene procedure. The keynote speaker is Jeffrey Deaver, who first whetted my appetite for a well-written forensic novel. I fell in love with "The Bone Collector" and quicky ate up the whole series. Shortly thereafter, I found Patricia Cornwell, who cemented my love for forensic novels.
I've been kicking around the idea for a month or more, trying to justify the expense of both the conference and the travel. I'm pretty sure that my work family is tired of me debating back and forth, so they'll be thrilled to find out that I finally registered for it. I saved a good bit by registering early and I love a good deal, so I was able to pay for the registration for the conference and pay for the FATS (Firearms Training Simulator) training for less than if I'd waited another week.
Now I've just got to stave off the nervous breakdown brought on by spending that money. By God, I had better learn a TON in those three semi-expensive days.