Mystery Writer's Awards

Heather Long
Mystery writer
Writing prompts can help you start a new mystery story.

Mystery writer's awards are given to writers in the mystery genre that meet different criteria for the work they produce. The mystery genre is one that includes detective fiction, crime fiction, the standard whodunit and thrillers.

About Mystery Writer's Awards

Most writing organizations and groups offer acknowledgment to their fellow writers for work well done. Mystery writer's awards are no different, they are acknowledgments from peers or fans or literary judges. An author is not judged by the body of their works, but for each individual book published within the judged time period.

Agatha Awards

Inspired by the works of Agatha Christie, the Malice Domestic fans present these literary awards for crime and mystery writers. This mystery writer's awards are handed out for Best Novel, Best First Mystery, Best Short Story, Best Non-Fiction, and Best Children's or Young Adult mystery. Typically, the novels that win these awards do not feature graphic violence or sexually explicit material and focus exclusively on solving the mystery.

Anthony Awards

Named for the late Anthony Boucher, a well-known writer who helped found the Mystery Writers of America, the Anthony Awards are considered among the most prestigious literary award for mystery authors. Each year, the hosting city's committee judges the nominated works and gives awards for Best Novel, Best First Novel, Best Paperback Original, Short Story, Critical Work, Special Services and Web Site during the Boucheron World Mystery Convention.

Barry Award

During the annual Boucheron convention, the Barry Award is also given to the best crime fiction story each year. The awards are sponsored by Deadly Pleasures magazine and co-sponsored by Mystery News. The award itself is named for Barry Gardner, a popular fan reviewer of the genre.

Dagger Award

The Crime Writers' Association presents the Golden Dagger Award each year for the best crime fiction novel. The award was originally known as the Crossed Red Herring, but was later renamed to Golden Dagger. Fiction, non-fiction and short stories are the three categories honored. Currently, the award is named the Duncan Lawrie Dagger and offers a monetary prize of over £20,000, the most lucrative of all the mystery writer's awards.

Edgar Awards

The Edgar Awards are given out by the Mystery Writers of America for the best mystery nonfiction and fictions produced each year. The awards were fist given in 1954 and take their name from Edgar Allen Poe, a literary master in the genre. The Edgar Awards are different from other mystery writers' awards because they also acknowledge work in television and film as well as in books.

Arthur Ellis Award

Taking their name from Canada's hangman, the Arthur Ellis Award is given by the Crime Writers of Canada to Canadian authors in recognition of their literary excellence in the field. These awards also acknowledge the best 'unpublished' novel of that year with the Unhanged Award.

Hillerman Prize

Tony Hillerman is well known for his southwest detective series involving Native Americans. St. Martin's Press awards a Hillerman Prize to unpublished authors whose first mystery work is set in the Southwest.

Macavity Awards

T.S. Eliot's Macavity is cited as the source for the Macavity Award. This award is given by fans to their favorite mysteries. The voters are members of Mystery Readers International and each year they vote on their favorite mystery books of the previous year.

Mystery Writer's Awards