The 2013 Public Safety Writers Association (PSWA) was held at The Orléans hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada, on July 11-14th. It was my first time attending the conference, and I have to tell you it was a wonderful experience.
Members included- police officers, civilian police personnel, firefighters, fire support people, emergency personnel, security personnel, FBI, homeland security, psychologists, social workers, and others in the public safety field. They accept writer’s who write about public safety including mystery writers, magazine writers, journalists, and crime fiction or those who are simply interested in the genre.
Not only did I gain knowledge from this talented group of writers, but also I was surprised they had a pretty even mix on the writing craft itself.
Panels were as follows:
- Adding Realism to Your Novels/Stories
- The Prostitution Culture, Different Types of Prostitution, How Pimps Work, the Pimp Law and How Best to Investigate Them
- The Mystery of DNA
- The Non Professional Sleuth
- Real vs. Reel Crime Scene and Evidence Collection
- Going from Book to Blog
- Writing Believable Dialogue
I joined this group because the first book in my Victims of Love series is NOT a romance. It is crime fiction and I wanted to get the details right. Luckily for me I learned after joining this group, I had to re-write my ending because DNA was not around in 1986 where Genesis (my prequel ) takes place.
And I found out siting in Denver International Airport (DIA) smoke lounge that in 1986 there was no Denver International Airport it was called Stapleton International Airport (SIA). My hero Johnny Gaston, catches a plane to Denver, I had him going to DIA now he is going SIA. Also, Denver International Airport is massive in size compared to old Stapleton International Airport. Two very BIG boo-boo’s! Two major re-writes!
So-it pays to research your book, it adds realism to your story, and readers will call you on any mistakes. Research is very IMPORTANT!
PSWA also had publishers to pitch to. Kathy Contrell from Wild Rose Press, Billie Johnson from Oak Tree Press and for those of you who want to self publish, Geno Munari from Houdini Press.
He showed us an interested concept on how books will be distributed in the very near future.
The hotel was also wonderful. Staff was friendly and the lunches provided for the conference were out of this world!
It had been at least twenty years since I last went to Las Vegas and, boy, has it changed! The strip almost looks like New York’s Times Square . My husband Tom and I visited with family while we were there. Four days was not enough time. I not only acquired a great deal of knowledge but I also made a few friends. I would encourage any of you who write books about murder, mystery and have any type of law enforcement or public safety characters, to think about joining this group of experts and writers.
Here’s where you can find PSWA at:
Until next time, happy writing!
Blog edited by: Sally Berneathy