Key West, Florida Keys – In a startling plot twist, organizers of the upcoming Key West Mystery Fest have announced that one Fest guest will walk into the pages of bestselling author Meg Muldoon’s next “Christmas River” series novel.
Muldoon, a former news reporter and author of more than a dozen “cozy” mystery titles, is slated to be a featured panelist at the upcoming “Murder & Mayhem in Paradise” themed Key West Mystery Fest, a gathering of true-crime, mystery, and suspense writers and fans to be held in Key West, Florida, June 16-18. All who are registered for the Fest by midnight June 1 are eligible to win a cameo “character placement” role in the author’s forthcoming “Meltdown in Christmas River: A Christmas Cozy Mystery Book,” which is due out this August.
What is a “cozy” mystery, you ask? Cozies are one of numerous sub-genre’s in the mystery writing world. While a “hardboiled” mystery typically follows a gritty Private Investigator in a corrupt urban setting, and “noir” is known for its “no heroes, no happy endings” darkness, “cozy” mysteries are written with a warm and often humorous approach, are light on sex, violence and coarse language and generally star an amateur detective in a small-town setting.
“Part of the fun is that the winner will get to choose whether they want to be a good character or a bad character in my next book,” Muldoon said. "I can't wait to see which one they go for!"
Over the past three years, the Santa Fe, New Mexico-based author, who is originally from Bend, Oregon, has earned considerable renown as a run-away success story in the self-publishing world. “When someone picks up one of my books, I want them to feel as if they’re coming to a special place full of mystery, romance, memorable characters, and delicious pie,” Muldoon said. “I try to put a lot of heart and honesty into my stories, and I think readers have really responded to that.”
Appearing with Muldoon at the Fest are a hit-list of high-profile and award winning mystery and crime fiction authors and true-crime experts, including headliners John Hemingway, grandson of Ernest and author of “Strange Tribe,” Keynote Speaker Clifford Irving, investigative reporter and author of more than 20 novels - including a faux Howard Hughes “autobiography” for which he served prison time - and Mystery Writers of America Florida Chapter past-President Randy Rawls.
Featured presenters include New York Times bestselling author Lisa Black, award-winning crime and science fiction writer James O. Born, and New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Heather Graham, each of whom will also moderate and appear on panels with award-winning “cozy” mystery writer Nancy J. Cohen and many others.
Mystery Fest Key West 2017 is sponsored by the Monroe County Tourist Development Council, the Key West Citizen daily newspaper, Mystery Writers of America – Florida Chapter, the Florida Keys Council of the Arts and supported by the Marion Stevens Fund at the Community Foundation of the Florida Keys and the Helmerich Trust.
Event registration is $195 and includes all panels, presentations, social events and four meals. All panels and presentations will be held at the DoubleTree Resort by Hilton Grand Key. For registration, information and a full fest schedule visit mysteryfestkeywest.com.
Former small town news reporter, cozy mystery author Meg Muldoon, pictured here with canine companion Litigation Bones, says that she has always had a special place in her heart for lost dogs, homeless cats, and feisty old locals.