In early May, I will be going to my first book conference in Bethesda, Maryland. It’s a conference for authors called Malice Domestic, but it is also highly geared toward mystery fans. Malice Domestic 27 is held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, and it will feature special events and panels of authors speaking on all kinds of writing subjects. In the words of the Malice website, this is what the conference is about:
“Established in 1989, Malice Domestic® is an annual “fun fan” convention in metropolitan Washington, D.C., saluting the traditional mystery—books best typified by the works of Agatha Christie. The genre is loosely defined as mysteries which contain no explicit sex or excessive gore or violence.”
Malice Domestic is an opportunity for fans to meet some of their favorite mystery authors, and for authors to meet fans, speak about writing, and sign their books. Each year Malice Domestic features guest writers who are honorees. This year’s honored writers are Charles Todd (a mother/son team) as guests of honor; Sara Paretsky, lifetime achievement award; Ann Cleeves, international guest of honor; and William Starck, fan guest of honor. Besides these honorees, Malice will host 225 authors and a multitude of fans.
Some of the highlights of the event will include a discussion by forensic anthropologists, David Hunt and Deb Hull-Walski, a live charity auction, and interviews of the honorees. The Agatha awards will be given out at the end of the conference. Over the three days, authors will speak on panels with interesting labels like: Globe Trotters/Traveling Sleuths, You Could Just Die Laughing/Humor in Mysteries, Let There Be Lighthouses/Murder by the Seaside, and Mysteries with a Spooky Feel. I will be on a panel with four other authors moderated by Debra H. Goldstein and featuring Neil Plakcy, Lori Rader-Day, and Triss Stein. Our topic is “School for Murder: Academic Mysteries.”
Going to Malice Domestic will give me an opportunity to meet many of my fellow authors. Since I live in the middle of the Midwest in a small town, this is a great chance to do a little networking and find out more about writing. I’m already reading books by many of these authors, and I will be packed and ready to go later in the spring. I’ll be sure to report on my experience here on Mostly Mystery.