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Media Release

Published: 06/14/2007
For media information 505-983-5615, 505-471-1565 or contact

Tony Hillerman Writers Conference comes back to Albuquerque

Fourth Annual Conference theme is Focus on Mystery

            New Mexico will host the fourth annual Tony Hillerman Writers Conference: Focus on Mystery, welcoming major authors, agents, writers and mystery fans. The conference will be Nov. 1-4, 2007 at the Albuquerque Hyatt Regency. The conference will focus on the mystery genre with presentations and discussions on both the creative and business aspects of writing masterful fiction.

Conference speakers include New Mexico’s own Tony Hillerman. Hillerman’s newest book, THE SHAPE SHIFTER, is the winner of the acclaimed 2007 Spur Award. The author of the best selling Joe Leaphorn/Jim Chee series and many non-fiction books will be joined by a bevy of other award-winning authors. Master of suspense David Morrell opens the conference with talks on the evolution of the mystery genre and insights on the transformation of the publishing industry. The creator of the Rambo character, Morrell has created numerous best selling novels, the latest of which is SCAVANGER. He also recently wrote a six-part CAPTAIN AMERICA comic-book series that explores the serious theme of the burden of being a superhero in today's troubled world. He is a co-founder of the International Thriller Writers Organization. Morrell lives in Santa Fe.

            Also on the faculty from New Mexico are writers Joe Badal, Carol Franco, Steve Havill, Judith Van Gieson, Pari Noskin Taichert, Bill O’Hanlon, Shirley Raye Redmond, Lucinda Schroeder, and agent Elizabeth Turpin-Pulli.

            The keynote speaker will be award winning mystery writer Margaret Coel who sets her novels on the Wind River Arapaho Indian Reservation. Coel, who lives in Colorado and has family in New Mexico, has been praised for her attention to cultural details and riveting story telling. She also will share tips on writing dialog and plotting during the conference.

            Other featured writers include former Albuquerque resident Steve Brewer, author of 15 books and a past member of the board of directors of Mystery Writers of America. K J Erickson, author of the Mars Bahr mystery series, nominated for Anthony and Barry Awards, will speak on the elements of successful fiction. Her newest book ALONE AT NIGHT received the Minnesota book award for popular fiction.

            Breakouts include several sessions on the skills needed to write a mystery, “Real Life in the Medical Examiner’s office vs. TV: What’s the Difference?” and “How REAL Cops Interview and Interrogate Suspects.” Participants will have an opportunity to pitch their novel to an agent. Early registration fee of $395 includes most meals.

            A pre-conference workshop with Bill O’Hanlon, author of WRITE IS A VERB and Oprah guest, will focus on the business side of writing, offering attendees tools to help find an agent, get published and sell their books.

 The conference will honor the winner of the inaugural Tony Hillerman Prize for the best first mystery set in the southwest. The $10,000 prize is jointly sponsored by the conference and St. Martin’s Press, one of the world’s major publishers of mystery novels. The winner of the 2007 Cowboys & Indians mystery short story contest will also be announced.

            For more information, please visit or call 505-471-1565.


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