Please Note: Information is updated regularly, so please check back.

What is Third Degree Thursday?

The Thursday workshops are an optional, limited enrollment component of the conference, not included in the regular registration fee. You will have the opportunity to choose from hands-on workshops and sessions taught throughout the day by masters of the craft, including manuscript critiques, forensics, pitching techniques, and more!

How much is it?

The cost is $85 for MWA members and non-members alike. You may register for it on the conference registration form. Registrants may attend whichever workshop(s) you prefer – no additional registration required.

Do I have to pre-register for the Thursday workshops, or can I register that day?

It’s preferable to register in advance so that our Programming Chair and teachers have an idea of how many participants to expect at the various workshops. Some workshops require pre-registration to participate and get maximum benefit. Otherwise you may always observe. You may, however, register upon arrival.



What is it?

Whether you’re a wallflower or social butterfly, the SleuthFest 101 dinner on Thursday night is a great way for both newcomers and prior years’ SleuthFest attendees to kick off the conference experience. Guests will have the opportunity to meet and mingle with other SleuthFest attendees, and learn what’s in store over the next three days.

This year, we will be having ‘sub-genre’ tables such as traditional mysteries, thrillers, amateur sleuths, or even young adult. Seating is limited so sign up early!

What does it include?

The SleuthFest 101 Dinner includes dinner and gratuities. Sign up and select meal choices on the registration form.



How do I get selected for a panel/session?

First, you must be a published author by an MWA-approved publisher. There is a box on the registration form asking if you’d like to participate on a panel. Be sure to check it. The SleuthFest Programming Chair will make every effort to accommodate each session request but cannot make any guarantees. If you are placed on a panel, you will be notified before the conference of your assignment and of the names of the others on the panel with you.

If I request a panel/session, how does my picture and bio get into the conference program booklet?

Once you’ve registered, paid, and requested to be an instructor/panelist, please email your bio (not to exceed 99 words) and picture to pjparish@aol.com. You do NOT need to wait to hear whether you’ve been placed on a panel.

How are Moderators selected?

The SleuthFest Programming Chair solicits moderators and then matches them to the panels. You need not be published to moderate. Feel free to volunteer once you’re registered and paid. Our Moderator coordinator will notify you if you have been chosen.



What is this?

Each year, agents and editors attend SleuthFest as invited guests. They are present to participate on panels, to accept “cold pitches” from participants, and to enjoy the conference.

Do I need a completed manuscript in order to “cold pitch” an agent or editor?

Yes, your manuscript should be complete and ready to submit.

Is there a charge for this?

Yes, a nominal charge of $10.  Sign up when you register for the conference.

Are you blocked with your unfinished manuscript and don’t know where to go? 

Book a Strategy Session with an editor for an unfinished manuscript.

Is there a charge for this?

Yes, a nominal charge of $10.  Sign up when you register for the conference.

How do I arrange for an appointment?

The registration form has a box for you to check to indicate your interest. You will be contacted by our ‘Agent and Editor Appointments’ volunteer in January to select your three preferences.

Do I choose the agent or editor I meet?

You will be asked to provide your top three choices, in priority order, but to avoid scheduling conflicts, the final assignment will be made by the Agent and Editor Appointments volunteer. This will happen in January or early February. Every effort will be made to assign your top choice, but we cannot make any guarantees.

When will I know with whom I’m meeting?

When you check in at the conference, you will receive a name badge lanyard that will include, among other things, your appointment information.

How long do I have to make my pitch?

10 minutes.

How do I compose my pitch?

There are several pitch sessions, both instructional and practice, scheduled throughout the program.  Please check the Schedule of Events for times and rooms.

What if all appointments are taken?

Appointments are assigned on a first-come first-served basis.  Once all appointments are filled, you may participate in the Flamingo Pitch Tank on Sunday morning. You may also participate in the Flamingo Pitch Tank in addition to your pitch appointment. See below for more info.


What Is The Flamingo Pitch Tank?

This is a new feature!  It’s a way to pitch your book to every agent and editor at the conference.

How Does It Work?

The Flamingo Pitch Tank is an optional event on Sunday morning.  Our agents and editors will be seated in the front row of the room.  Participants will face them in the front of the room and have three minutes to pitch their book to the agents and editors.

Who Will Be Able To Participate?

Time is limited, so numbers will be issued to each interested person when they enter the room.  The order of who goes first, second, etc., will be determined by when their number is drawn.  Depending on the number of people wanting to participate, no one is guaranteed a chance to pitch.  Pitching an unfinished manuscript is not allowed.

Will The Agents & Editors Or Audience Members Give A Critique Of My Pitch?

No.  Time is limited. This is not a workshop or critique session.  Agents and editors will be instructed to withhold any comments.  This applies to audience members as well.  If they are interested in your book, they will request your contact information at the end of the session.  So stick around so they can find you afterward.



Will I have opportunities to meet and talk to the agents and editors other than at the pitch sessions?

The agents and editors attend SleuthFest as our guests. They are friendly, outgoing, and enjoy meeting and chatting with attendees. Feel free to approach them as you would any other attendee. However, remember basic courtesy and privacy – bathrooms are off-limits for pitching.

How will I know what Agents and Editors are looking for?

Be sure to attend the Agents Roundtable and Editors Roundtable.  Check schedule of Events for times and places.



What is this?

Invited agents and/or editors agree to critique ten (10) pages of a manuscript.

How much does it cost?


What should I expect?

The key word is CRITIQUE. It is not intended as a “pitch,” nor is it a query. The agent or editor is not expected to evaluate the ten-pages on an acceptance/rejection basis. You will receive a critique of your work. The technique may vary from person to person, but you will receive a critique by a professional. You will receive an email with information about where to send your pages after you register.



What is it?

The opportunity to read a ten minute segment of your manuscript to a group of your peers. Your reading will be evaluated and comments returned to you.

How does it work?

Prior to the conference, registrants will be invited to participate by Dirk Wyle, the Reader’s Corner moderator. If you say yes, Dirk will include you on the list of readers. When the session starts, he will call the group together and alert the first trio of readers. Each person will be called to the podium and given ten minutes to introduce him/herself, set up his/her reading, and read the pages. At the end of the time, the audience will complete written critique sheets which will be provided to the reader.

Who can read?

Priority will be given to unpublished authors. After all unpublished authors have been assigned, published authors are welcome to read from an unpublished work.

Any hints?

Yes. Read slowly. Be courteous to the audience and other readers by adhering to the time limits. Practice ahead of time.

Anything else I should know?

The atmosphere is informal, with lots of coming and going in the audience. However, readers are expected to be present for the entire program and pay-it-forward by critiquing others. Snacks will be available.

To express your interest or for additional information, email Dirk Wyle at dirk@dirk-wyle.com.



Are ads available in the program book?


How can I buy one?

Email PJ Parrish at
to reserve your space. Deadline for all ad copy is January 15, 2017.

Suppose I’m iffy on designing an ad?

We offer free design services. If you would like an ad, but have no one to assist you in designing one, we will help you free of charge! If you require this service, please contact PJ Parrish so we can schedule your space and get to work on your ad. PJ will provide a proof for your approval as soon as it is complete.

How do I submit an ad and what sizes are available?

Pre-Designed Ads. Ads should be designed in 300 DPI, and saved in a PDF or JPEG format. Ads can be submitted in black & white or color. We prefer email but can also accept a CD or a high-quality scan on disk or paper. Please advise if you need an address for mailing the ad copy.

Ad Sizes & Prices                       Full Color                     Black & White

Full Page: 7.5” wide x 10” high      $350                                  $175

½ Page: 7.5” wide x 5” high             200                                    100

¼ Page: 3.75” wide x 5” high           150                                     75

Back Cover: Full Color Only   $750

Inside Front or Back Cover: Full Color Only  $500.

Please be sure to include the following with your payment so we can apply it properly:

Your name

Type of payment you are making (Advertising)

Size and cost of your ad, and

Your email address.

Make checks payable to MWA-Florida Chapter, and send to the following address:

MWA Florida Chapter, 2301 South Ocean Drive Apt 2005, Hollywood, FL  33019




Embassy Suites by Hilton Boca Raton, 661 NW 53rd Street, Boca Raton, Florida, 33487

I’m flying in for the conference. What’s the best way to get to the hotel?

Transportation from either Ft Lauderdale airport or Palm Beach airport is available by taxi or shuttle.

Ground Transportation from Ft Lauderdale (FLL) and Palm Beach (PBI) Airports

A Kings Limo A King Limo (561) 662-8222 From FLL $96.00 per limo up to 4 passengers. From PBI $84. Quoted prices include fuel and gratuity. Call to reserve 48 hours in advance.

Boca Limo (561) 929-2653 Boca Limo. If pick-up is curbside $59.95, reserve one week in advance.

Presidential Limo (954) 428-9151 Presidential Limousine.
FLL to Embassy Suites Boca
Sedan — $86.75 (1 to 3 passengers)
SUV — $111.75 (with 6 passengers maximun
PBI to Embassy Suites Boca
Sedan — $87.50
SUV — $112.50
Pricing reflects a discounted price for our group. Passengers must give code MWA2017 at time of booking to receive discounted rate.

Ft Lauderdale Airport (FLL) ONLY

Tri-Rail Call 800 TriRail or go to Tri Rail for information. Embassy Suites has a shuttle which can pick up guests at Boca Raton TriRail station. Call 561 994 8200 for hotel shuttle.

Go Airport Shuttle (954)627-1129. Shared Shuttle $23.00 per person. Passengers may wait for shuttle to fill. Go to desk inside lower level by baggage

Super Shuttle Super Shuttle (800) 258-3826. $35 per person one way call at least one day in advance. See website for further details

Taxis from the taxi line at either airport cost at least $75.

Fares listed are valid from day of posting on website. We recommend you call the service you plan to use ahead of your planned arrival to confirm price information.

I’m driving to the conference. What’s the best way to get to the hotel?

Please click on Hotel tab at top of this page, click on “For more information about the hotel.” This will take you to the hotel website. Then click on Directions.

Will I need a car?

You should not need a car.  There are plenty of activities at the hotel to keep you busy from Thursday morning to Sunday 2 pm.  However, for those who must get out, please see the hotel concierge.


If I have to cancel my registration, can I get a refund?

If you cancel no later than December 15, 2016, you will receive a full refund less any processing costs we may have incurred.

You will only be entitled to a 50% refund, less processing costs, for cancellations between December 16, 2016 and January 15, 2017. Due to the commitment we must make to the hotel, there are no refunds after January 15, 2017.



What is the Raffle?

One of our volunteers collects and packages baskets of books and all types of goodies donated by authors, local merchants, and others. Donations in the past have included signed books, paintings, gift certificates, edible treats, even a vacation package! Critiques and character-namings are always good, too! The baskets are on display in the bookstore for examination throughout the conference.

How do I donate items for the raffle?

Thank you! Donating to the raffle is a great way to gain additional exposure. We welcome all types of donations – you are limited only by your imagination! If you have an item or items to donate, please contact Raffle Coodinator benvenutoml@aol.com for further information regarding where to send your item.

PLEASE NOTE: All donations must be received by January 15, 2017.

We’ll try to fit in donations received after that date, but there is no guarantee.

How do I participate to win raffle items?

Raffle tickets are sold throughout the conference by our Boa Ladies and Gentlemen, volunteers who roam the conference wearing pink boas. Prices are reasonable, and you can buy as many tickets as you like to increase your odds of winning. Slotted boxes are placed with each raffle item and you put your tickets in the box for the item you would like to win.

When is the drawing and must I be present to win?

The drawing will be held before the Saturday evening cocktail party. It is not necessary for you to be there, but your tickets must be. Winning tickets are verified at the time of the drawing and the items presented. We cannot mail winning baskets. Many people who cannot attend on Saturday evening leave their tickets with a trusted friend.


Need a Roommate?
Contact our Roommate coordinator Becky, bdors52@yahoo.com


Additional Questions?

Although we hope we’ve answered many of your questions about SleuthFest on this page and throughout the website, please email us if you have further questions. Contact us at Sleuthfestinfo@gmail.com


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