Bloody Words is a Canadian mystery conference which is the oldest and largest in that country. It’s held in June each year with lots of panels and workshops with authors. They give out the Hammett Awards.
Book Passage Mystery Writers Conference
This conference in June in Corte Madera, California, provides panels and workshops for budding mystery writers to help further their writing career.
Bouchercon, named for the late mystery author/editor/critic Anthony Boucher, is the oldest and largest annual convention of mystery fans, authors, publishers, etc. It’s held in a different location each year and hands out the Anthony awards.
Cape Fear Crime Festival
Held in October in Wilmington, North Carolina, Cape Fear features panels for writers and fans and also sponsors a short story contest.
Con Misterio is held annually in Texas in July. Note that recently, the URL for this conference went inactive, and the conference may be defunct.
Crime and Justice Festival
An event held in the summer in Melbourne, Australia, where the public, writers, social commentators, judicial luminaries and the legal profession come together to both celebrate and promote contemporary writings in the fields of justice and human rights, and to overlay these discussions with guest writers in the genre of crime fiction.
Criminal Pursuits is a series of crime-writing workshops co-sponsored by BreakThrough Promotions and the Southwest Region of Mystery Writers of America, and held in September in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Held in Parsippany, New Jersey, each summer, Deadly Ink features panels and master classes and sponsors the David G. Sasher Award for Best Mystery Novel, Ida Chittum Award for best Young Adult Mystery Novel, a contest for unpublished novels with a chance at publication for the winner, and a short story contest.
Dying to Write
Dying to Write is a relatively new one-day conference held in the DC area in October and sponsored by the Mid-Atlantic Chapter of Mystery Writers of America.
Festival of Mystery
Festival of Mystery is a one-day event in May that nonetheless attracts some big names and is held at the Mystery Lovers Bookshop in Oakmont, PA.
Forensic Science and Law Conference
Features the minds behind popular mystery novels, true crime books and TV shows, as well as the real-life forensic scientists, investigators and attorneys Usually held in the Spring in Pittsburgh.
Forensic U is a conference held in November in St. Louis, Missouri, offering two-and-a-half days of classes taught by experts who work in the field of forensics.
Hardboiled Heroes & Cozy Cats
The Southwest Chapter of Mystery Writers of America presents this conference in the summer in Texas. In addition to the usual speakers and panels, they sponsor a short story contest.
Kansas Writers Association's Scene of the Crime Conference
Held in April, this conference features speaker sessions on a Fact Track with Detectives, Government Agents, and CSI Professionals, as well as a Fiction Track with New York Editors and Agents and Big Name Authors of Mystery, Suspense and Thriller Novels.
Old Pecular Crime Writing Festival
An international festival held annually in July in the Harrogate area of the UK.
International Festival of the Roman Noir
Held in Frontignan, France in the summer, this conference focuses on noir mystery/crime fiction.
International Mystery Writers Festival
A recent addition to the conference lineup, this event in Owensboro, Kentucky, showcases mystery plays which are selected in a competition. It’s a fairly star-studded event, with celebrities from both mystery fiction and Hollywood.
Held in August in Nashville, this conference is for fans and writers of both mysteries and thrillers.
Left Coast Crime
Left Coast Crime is an annual conference held in the first quarter of the calendar year in Western North America in areas like Denver, Colorado and Waikoloa, Hawaii.
Library of Congress National Book Festival
Not just for mystery fiction, but includes mystery authors each year; held in D.C., usually in late summer, around September
Love Is Murder
Held in February in the greater Chicago area, this conference gets some fairly big names like Lee Child and Barry Eisler as speakers and also for seminars and master classes.
Magna Cum Murder
Held one weekend in October in Muncie, Indiana, and sponsored by Ball State University, this event includes an array of crime fiction authors, fans, booksellers, and other publishing industry professionals, with panels, programs, and interviews. Attendance is usually capped around 400.
The Malice conference is held annually in Arlington, Virginia, and bills itself as an annual "fun fan" convention saluting the traditional mystery, books best typified by the works of Agatha Christie. It has a long list of author attendees and sessions and sponsors the Agatha Awards.
Manhattan Mystery Conclave
Manhattan Mystery Conclave is a smaller conference held each year in the Fall in Manhattan, Kansas and includes several panels including one devoted to law enforcement.
Mayhem in the Midlands
Mayhem is held in May in Omaha, Nebraska in a historic hotel there, and is sponsored by the Omaha and Lincoln Public Libraries.
Men of Mystery
A conference usually held in November and limited to 500 participants from the public. Guests include more than 50 male mystery writers in every mystery subgenre.
A mystery convention and book fair in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, it went on hiatus in 2002 with plans to try and resurrect it in 2007. Stay tuned.
Murder and Mayhem in Muskego
This is a one-day conference held in November in Muskego, Wisconsin which draws big names like recent attendees Laura Lippman and Robert Crais.
Murder by the Bay
Murder by the Bay is one-day conference held in Fairhope, Alabama in May, with speakers plus your choice of a manuscript evaluation by an agent, a pitch to an editor, or a synopsis review.
Murder in the Grove
Murder in the Grove is a conference for fans and writers of mystery, thriller, and romantic suspense fiction held in the summer in Boise, Idaho with writing workshops, author panels, forensics and criminology workshops and more.
Murder in the Magic City
A one-day conference held in February in Birmingham, Alabama which bills itself as a “a mystery conference for fans of all sub-genres of mystery novels.”
Murder on the Menu
A one-day event in Wetumpka, Alabama in February featuring a luncheon with best-selling authors and a limited number of fans.
Held in June in Sarasota, it features Florida mystery authors and is limited to 100 fan participants.
A mystery writers’ retreat in late June/early July, new as of 2007, providing intensive writing sessions and the opportunity for mentoring.
New England Crimebake
Held in November in Massachusetts, they have the usual complement of panels and workshops and also sponsor a short story contest, the Al Blanchard Award.
No Crime Unpublished
Sponsored by the Los Angeles Chapter of Sisters in Crime, it’s usually held in the summer.
NoirCon 2008 will feature discussions, lectures, readings, and screenings. Whether it's hardboiled fiction by the likes of Chandler, Hammett, Muller or Himes, or groundbreaking films like Double Identity, Body Heat, or Pulp Fiction, Noir has a distinctive style all its own. It’s usually held in April.
Police Safety Writers Association Conference
This conference is held annually in Las Vegas and is open to anyone writing crime and mystery fiction or non-fiction, technical writing for public safey magazines in print or online, or anyone interested in writing.
Scene of the Crime
The annual Scene of the Crime Festival in August celebrates Wolfe Island's heritage as the birthplace of Canada's first crime writer with an event devoted to mystery readers. The festival offers the The Grant Allen Award honoring Canada's crime-writing pioneers.
Sleuthfest is presented by the Florida chapter of the Mystery Writers of America and held each March in Fort Lauderdale. Their stated purpose is to help experienced, professional writers advance their careers and new writers break into the profession.
South Carolina Book Festival
Although not geared specifically for crime fiction, this festival includes several best-selling mystery authors each year. Held in Columbia, SC, in the Spring (around February/March).
Thrillerfest is a relativeily new conference sponsored by the International Thriller Writers and held in July in New York City. As the name implies, it focuses entirely on the thriller sub-genre of mystery fiction. They give out fiction awards, as well.
Tony Hillerman Mystery Writers Conference
Held in November in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the Hillerman conference includes the Hillerman Prize for a first mystery novel, and also a short story contest.
Write of Spring
Sponsored by and held at the Once Upon a Crime Mystery bookstore in Minneapolis, MN, it’s a one-day event in March.
GENERAL WRITING & PUBLISHING CONFERENCES
American Library Association
The ALA conference is held in a different city each year, with upwards of 20,000 attendees and over 900 vendors. It’s a good place for new authors to get their books before librarians, who make purchasing decisions for the thousands of libraries across the US.
Backspace Writers Conference
Held at the Algonquin Hotel in New York in late May/early June, this conference brings together best-selling authors, top literary agents, and editors for a two-day, two-track event featuring panel discussions, workshops, and socializing in the heart of the publishing world.
Book Expo America
One of the granddaddies of them all, BEA is held in a different city each year. It’s not a writers conference per se, but a publishing industry conference with professionals from around the world discussing the biz and schmoozing. There are book signings and sessions, mostly featuring best-selling authors.
Edinburgh International Book Festival
The Edinburgh festival has become one of the largest and most dynamic festivals of its kind in the world. It’s usually held in August.
Great Lakes Booksellers Trade Show
One of several regional bookseller trade shows, GLBA features exhibitors, authors, and presenters. Authors take part in virtually every part of the show, including food events, workshops, special events, autographing sessions, and exhibits.
Harriett Austin Writers Conference
Held at the University of Georgia in July, it’s a workshop primarily for writer of all fiction, not fans per se, with topics on all aspects of fiction writing, including some oriented specifically for mystery and crime writers.
Independent and Small Press Book Fair
This book fair is held in New York in December and features a wide variety of panels, events, and talks focusing on contemporary events, while emphasizing their effect on the publishing industry as well as on literary trends.
Library of Congress Database of Book Fairs
The LOC database includes a selection of events around the US, but also includes a few from overseas, as well.
Mid-South Independent Booksellers Association
One of the regional bookseller trade shows held in the Fall, MSIBA includes selected author appearances.
Midwest Booksellers Association
This trade show, usually held in October, includes author signings with a formal autographing schedule.
Mountains and Plains Booksellers Association
This trade show (recently renamed Fall Book Camp) is held in September and includes an author’s breakfast open to the public and and other programs and author appearances.
New Atlantic Independent Booksellers Conference
This regional trade show offers the usual lineup of author signings and a “moveable feast” banquet.
New England Booksellers Association Trade Show
Another of the regional bookseller trade shows, usually held in September, NEBA includes authors who speaking at events in addition to workshops and seminars that run throughout the weekend. Saturday evening's major event is "Dinner with Authors," aka the "moveable feast," in which authors move from table to table of booksellers as each course is served. The dinner gives fifteen authors and 150 booksellers an opportunity to meet one another and forge relationships for the long-term. The New England Book Awards will be presented at the Sunday Breakfast with Authors
Northern California Independent Booksellers Trade Show
This is another of the regional bookseller trade shows for independents. It’s usually held in October.
Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association
This regional bookseller show includes some author signings and other opportunities. Usually held in September.
Public Library Association National Conference
The biennial National Conference is the premier event for the public libraries, drawing librarians, library support staff, trustees, Friends, and library vendors from across the country and around the world. The conference has educational programs, speakers, an exhibits hall, and networking opportunities.
Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers Colorado Gold Conference
Held in the Fall (usually Sepember) in Denver.
The Shaw Guides include, among other things, a free database of writers conferences and workshops of all types.
Southern Independent Booksellers Convention
This booksellers conference includes many author appearance, signings, and a “moveable feast” banquet.
Crime Writers Homicide School
A course led by Derek Pacifico, a cop in Southern California working for the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department.
A database of writing conferences, workshops, and retreats
RWA Mystery and Suspense
The Kiss of Death Chapter of Romance Writers of America offers COFFIN KillerInstincts workshops.
Writers Digest Online Workshops
Online instruction in fiction, the business of writing, grammar, composition, poetry, life stories, nonfiction
Writers Online Classes
They offer online instruction on the craft of writing in many genres. These monthly classes are conducted via E-mail only, no real time or live chats.
Writers Police Academy
A hands-on workshop in North Carolina, led by crime consultant/author Lee Lofland.