Magna cum Murder

crime writing festival

October 25-27, 2013 

The Columbia Club, Indianapolis, IN

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Message from Kathryn Kensison
Magna Hotel Info
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Sponsored by
Ball State University
Muncie, Indiana


Magna cum Murder
Kathryn Kennison, Director

Steering Committee
Jama Kehoe Bigger
Diane Watters

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~ Message from Kathryn Kennison


As we look over the registration list for Magna XIX, we are ecstatic to see so many returning Magna cum Murderers. If we had any doubts (we didn't) about moving to Indianapolis, we are more convinced than ever that it is the right thing to do. Heaven knows we'll miss Muncie and the Horizon Center, but the Columbia Club is going to be a fabulous new home for us!


Authors returning include Dorothy Cannell, a perennial favorite, (and she's bringing her darling husband, Julian!) We so enjoy deft humor and fine characterization of Ellie Haskell--the formerly plump girl turned Thin Woman and happily married mother of three, a sometime sleuth and a Gothic romance addict. Her stand-alone novel Sea Glass Summer was well-received in 2012. We look forward to her next novel, Murder at Mullings, scheduled for release in 2014.

Maureen Jennings has been blazing new trails since her last appearance here in 2006. (Her husband, Iden Ford, is another Magna husband we always look forward to seeing!)


Her latest book is Season of Darkness, a Detective Inspector Tom Tyler Mystery, released in August.


Praise for Season of Darkness:

"Jennings has always had a keen eye for the marginalized members of society. . . . As the only police inspector in his insular Shropshire village, Tom Tyler . . . finds himself torn between loyalty to his neighbors and his sense of duty - a conflict that could easily take a Tom Tyler series through the end of the war." -New York Time Book Review


"Master storyteller and screenwriter Jennings . . . launches a trilogy with this superb entry. Readers will be swept away by the sagalike tone and the characters' singular problems and traits. Think the British television series Foyle's War for comparison." -Library Journal (starred review)


"A fine mystery. . . . [Tyler] has a vulnerable side that makes him a character whom readers will want to know better as this series continues." -Halifax Chronicle-Herald


"Tyler . . . is just as complex and appealing as Murdoch. . . . [Season of Darkness] stacks up well against other fine and compelling literature set during the Second World War." -Joan Barfoot, London Free Press


Then there's our great Magna friend, William Kent Krueger! 

For all of us who love his Cork O'Conner series, number thirteen, Tamarack County, is now availablePublishers Weekly (starred review) describes the novel as "...a winter's tale that will both break and warm the reader's heart." And Tamarack County debuted at #16 on the New York Times bestseller list!
And certainly Terence Faherty is Magna family -- we are excited about his new Owen Keane novel, Eastward in Eden, to be published in October by Crum Creek Press / The Mystery Company, an independent publishing company owned and operated by Jim Huang.

Terry's Owen Keane series has been nominated for two Edgars, an Anthony, a Macavity, a Shamus and a Derringer, and it has earned consistently great reviews. Fourteen years after his last appearance in a novel, Owen Keane returns!


Praise for Owen Keane:

"Owen's original voice and his intriguing take on detective work--the sleuth as clown as spiritual therapist--make his latest appearance memorably offbeat and well worth seeking out." -Kirkus Reviews on Die Dreaming


"The religious convictions of the characters ... go to the heart of this eloquently low-key mystery, which is about the challenge of maintaining a belief that defies reason. If the hero of this provocative series cannot make that leap, he pays his respects to those who can and goes on searching for his own answers. In his quiet, thoughtful way, Owen proves that he does, indeed, have a lot of guts." -The New York Times Book Review on The Ordained


"This ambitious work sensitively probes its protagonist's emotional uncertainties ... and garners much wry humor from the image of Owen, cigarette in mouth, spluttering through rural Hoosier backwoods in his beat-up sports car. A near-faultless performance from start to finish. - Publishers Weekly on The Lost Keats


Since the second festival, people have likened Magna cum Murder to a family reunion, dinner-on-the-grounds, and a house party for 200 of your closest friends. For us it feels like a homecoming!  Don't miss out! Register right now.

~ Kathryn

Magna Hotel Info!

These hotels are available downtown and are giving us special rates. However, you MUST tell them that you are with Ball State's Magna cum Murder Festival to get the rate:


Homewood Suites by Hilton Indianapolis-Downtown
211 S. Meridian Street, Indianapolis, IN 46225
Phone: 317-636-7992 ~ 
$119 per night


Sheraton City Centre
30 W. Ohio Street, Indianapolis, IN 46204
Phone: 317-635-2000 ~ 
$110 per night

Hilton Garden Inn Indianapolis Downtown

10 East Market Street, Indianapolis, Indiana 46204
Phone: 317-955-9700 ~ $119 per night

Check Out Visit Indy
Visit Indy Once you've registered for Magna, you may want to take a look at the official tourism website for Indianapolis.
Present your conference badge at these participating businesses to receive
special discounts not available to the general public.
Come visit returning Magna authors and 
meet new ones!
Click HERE to register!


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