Sleuthfest by Tara Randel

At the beginning of July, a writer friend and I went to Sleuthfest, an annual conference put on by the Florida Chapter of Mystery Writers of America. After the past few years of Zoom meetings, it was so nice to be with people who were excited to be together and also passionate about writing.

Writing is mostly a solitary job. So many hours spent at the computer feels productive, but there are times when you need to be with other writers. There is an energy that come from attending conferences. We are with our people, folks who understand living in your head and the great stories that come from an active imagination.  Talking about the craft is always a joy and since this was the first conference since shut-downs and being cautious, the writers present were ready to have a good time.

I’ve always attended conferences that focus on romance, so this was quite a change. Instead of workshops featuring romantic tension and the conflict that comes with it, I sat in workshops about cold cases, crime scene investigations and how to write action scenes.  It was like stepping into a new world, informative and lots of fun.

The guest speakers were very generous and there were lots of laughs and inspiration. I came away refreshed and eager to get back to my keyboard. Story ideas pop into my head when I’m with other creative people and I can’t wait to get home and read over my notes. Some ideas are gold, others…well, some have to go back to the drawing board.

I even came home with some reading to do.

I hope you are having a wonderful summer and you’ve been able to escape somewhere special for a few days. In my next post, I’ll tell you about the side trip my friend and I made after the mystery conference, so stay tuned.

Also, this time of year is made for beach-read summer days, so if you have a good book, spend a few hours away from the daily grind and get lost in a good story. I plan to do just that.

Tara Randel is an award-winning, USA Today bestselling author. Family values, a bit of mystery and of course, love and romance, are her favorite themes, because she believes love is the greatest gift of all. Look for her next Harlequin Heartwarming romance, HIS SMALL TOWN DREAM, available AUGUST 2022. For more information about her books, visit Tara at Like her on Facebook at Sign up for Tara’s Newsletter

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