Mystery Writers of America

Post 10 in my Professional Authors Associations Series. Click here to read post 1.

Mystery Writers of America:

Visit their website at

The Mystery Writers of America is an organization of and for mystery writers and those allied to the crime-writing field. MWA is dedicated to promoting respect for crime writing and for those who write it. It provides scholarships for writers, sponsors a youth literacy program and symposia and conferences, presents the annual Edgar Awards, and conducts other activities to further a better appreciation and higher regard for crime writing. MWA also works to educate writers and those who aspire to write regarding their rights and interests and to make writers and readers aware of developments that could affect crime writing such as legislation, publishing industry practices, judicial decisions, and in other ways. Membership includes writers of books, short stories, plays, and screenplays; publishers, editors, agents, librarians, booksellers, and other in allied fields; aspiring writers and others devoted to crime writing.

MWA has eleven regional chapters, and members are automatically enrolled in the appropriate regional chapter. All chapters have a newsletter and most have regular meetings; increasingly, chapters also have an online presence. Benefits include ten issues annually of the national newsletter, internal listservs focused on practical issues such as touring, contracts, publicity, agents, foreign rights, movie options, and other business questions, help for traditionally published writers who have been dropped by their publishers, access to health, vision, and dental insurance, and discounts on resources such as Writer’s Digest books and magazine, Publishers Weekly, invitation to the Edgar Awards, a one-day writing conference, and exclusive databases of bookstores and libraries interested in mystery writers and books.

This information has been adapted from the 4th edition of The Writer’s Legal Guide by Kay Murray and myself.

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