We've already highlighted 5 of the biggest mystery fan conventions of 2015, but lucky for us, there are tons more great conferences happening all over, including regional or specialty crime fiction events with their own focuses and unique twists. So here's another bunch of terrific happenings to consider, and we'd love your comments on any others we should add to the calendar!
Love is Murder
February 6-8, 2015, Chicago, Illinois
Love is Murder is a mystery/romantic suspense/thriller conference in the Midwest, drawing upwards of 300 readers, fans, authors, and writers for panel discussions, book signings, networking, and the opportunity to pitch manuscripts and ideas to publishers, agents, and editors. Registered attendees are eligible for the LOVEY awards, and the Evelyn Hopkins award will be given for Outstanding Efforts on Behalf of Readers and Writers of Genre Fiction. This year's guests of honor include: Zoe Sharp and Denise Swanson, local author Robert Goldsborough, and Anne Perry, who will be hosting a master class via Skype.
February 26-March1, 2015, Deerfield Beach, Florida
Hosted by the Florida chapter of Mystery Writers of America, this year's conference includes Keynote Speaker James Patterson, Florida Guest of Honor James W. Hall, and Special Sunday Guest of Honor Dave Barry. In addition to author panels and book signings, there will be agent appointments and critique, worshops on writing and marketing and publishing, plus a forensic track for in-depth researchers. The Forensic Guest of Honor is Ric Gillespie, an aviation accident investigator who's led numerous expeditions to the South Pacific as part of the Earhart Project.
Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival
July 16-19, 2015, Harrogate, U.K.
Not so much a convention with limited attendees as a public book festival, this four-day event presents an “accessible, challenging and entertaining long-weekend of live literature events, engaging 13,000 people each year in lively thought-provoking debates about the written word, the changing roles of writers and readers, and literature’s response to, and effect upon, wider society.” This year's guests of honor will include M.C. Beaton, Arnaldur Indridason, and Sara Paretsky.
Magna Cum Murder
October 30-November 1, 2015, Indianapolis, Indiana
This conference, in its 21st year, is always hosted by Ball University and traditionally held over the festive Halloween weekend. There will be a large slate of signing and panel events, as well as a banquet. However, thanks to its sponsor, there's also a unique academic track and roundtables where white papers are presented, and during the event, faculty and students of Ball State mingle with crime writers and readers. This year's Guest of Honor is William Kent Krueger and the International Guest of Honor is Simon Brett.
New England Crime Bake
November 6-8, 2015, Dedham Massachusetts
Co-sponsored by the New England chapters of Sisters in Crime and Mystery Writers of America, this conference has panels, signings, seminars, and interviews comprised of authors, literary agents, experts in forensics, and other fields related to research and publishing. Master classes and partial manuscript critiques are also available, as is the popular Crime Bake Gala, a themed banquet and costume party. The Al Blanchard Award is granted annually to honor the best crime short story by a New England author or set in a New England setting. 2015's Guest of Honor is Elizabeth George.
(Note: This info was verified while the event's website is being updated—you can use the Contact Us page for urgent inquiries.)
So, what other wonderful events did we miss? Tell us about your favorites in the comments, and as long as we can verify the details and provide a link for more information, we're delighted to post them here with the lowdown!