Wednesday, January 14, 2009


Sleuthfest is a fabulous conference geared towards mystery writers and readers. The Florida chapter of Mystery Writers of America has been putting this conference on for years, and it just keeps getting better and better.

This year it is Feb. 26-March 1st at the Deerfield Beach Hilton in lovely south Florida, where the warm balmy breezes will make you forget all about Old Man Winter for sure. And if you register today, you get the early discount too! If you need more enticement, the Guests of Honor are Brad Meltzer and John Hart! (And I'll be there too.)

Neil Plakcy, who's in charge of programming, sent along some info. I'm hoping that some of the other writers who are attending will share their thoughts about the conference as well.

From Neil...

Sleuthfest Programming

I’m in charge of programming for Sleuthfest, and it has been an interesting challenge. I’m trying to build on what we’ve done before, but also bring to bear my experience having attended dozens of mystery writers’ conferences over the many years since I first began trying to get published.

Last year, Christine Kling ran a workshop in which aspiring authors submitted pages of their works in progress in advance, and she and the rest of the group critiqued them. It was a huge success, so we decided to try that again. Only this time, Elaine Viets, Vicki Hendricks and Lisa Black will be joining Chris in offering critique workshops, as part of our Third Degree Thursday programming.

Keeping our focus on helping writers craft better manuscripts, we’ve got a bunch of great workshops lined up on Friday and Saturday. Vincent O’Neil will examine openings, Martha Powers will look at suspense, S.J. Rozan will discuss characters, and the sister team of P.J. Parrish will help with pacing problems.

All this is in addition to our usual roster of great panel discussions, on topics like legal eagles, female detectives, vampire villains, historical honchos, amateur sleuths, and private eyes. We’ll kibitz about cops, yak about young adult mysteries, and rap about romantic suspense. Hope you can join us!

Neil Plakcy is the author of Mahu, Mahu Surfer, Mahu Fire, and Mahu Vice (August, 2009), mystery novels set in Hawaii. Editor of Paws and Reflect: A Special Bond Between Man and Dog, and Hard Hats: Gay Erotic


Terry Odell said...

Definitely looking forward to attending again this year. I went to my first when I saw Robert B. Parker was the keynote speaker, and have been faithfully showing up ever since. I've moved from being an awe-struck newbie to being an awe-struck published writer and panelist.

Nancy Naigle said...

I'm looking forward to reconnecting with the writers I met at Sleuthfest last year, and adding to my knowledgebase through the fantastic workshops.

I've attended a lot of conferences and this one is my favorite. It's well planned and executed and the people I met are among the most helpful I've come across.

See you there...
Nancy Naigle
Love stories from the crossroad of small town and suspense.
Drewryville, VA

Anonymous said...

I'm very excited about this conference. I have six completed thrillers and hope to complete two more this year. The selection of agents and editors is fantastic. I also plan on making many interesting friends there.

Johnny Ray

Anonymous said...

I'd wanted to attend Sleuthfest for a couple years now. Everyone raves about it and I always need a 'writer fix' about this time of year. So my first time includes being on a panel. I'm looking forward to meeting some new writers and seeing friends I made at Thrillerfest.

Anonymous said...

I am very happy to go to Sleuthfest again this year. I am an aspiring writer in my free time (what, about 2 hours a week!). I learned so much last year that I immediately signed up again. This is a good conference. It's well put together and very entertaining as well as educational.

I've always loved mysteries, and was introduced to some authors outside my comfort zone of cozies last year (Lee Child and RD Robb).

I can't wait to go again, maybe see some people from last year, and take one step closer to getting my novel to an agent. It doesn't hurt to get out of the DC area in February either!

Search This Blog