Mystery Writers of America

Mystery Writers of America (MWA) is an organization of mystery and crime writers, based in New York City.[1]

The organization was founded in 1945 by Clayton Rawson, Anthony Boucher, Lawrence Treat, and Brett Halliday.

It presents the Edgar Award, a small bust of Edgar Allan Poe, to mystery or crime writers every year. It presents the Raven Award to non-writers, who contribute to the mystery genre. The category of Best Juvenile Mystery is also part of the Edgar Award, with such notable recipients as Barbara Brooks Wallace having won the honor twice, for The Twin in the Tavern in 1994 and Sparrows in the Scullery in 1998, and Tony Abbott for his novel The Postcard, which received critical accolades in 2009.

Grand Master Award

The Grand Master Award is the highest honor bestowed by the Mystery Writers of America. It recognizes lifetime achievement and consistent quality. (The award was presented irregularly up to 1978; from 1979 to 2008, it was given to one writer each year. Since 2009, as many as three authors have been honored annually.)

In 2018, the Mystery Writers of America announced that it would honor best-selling author and former prosecutor Linda Fairstein with one of its Grand Master Awards for literary achievement. But two days after controversy erupted in connection with her alleged role in the Central Park jogger case, the organization withdrew the honor.[2]

1955Agatha Christie1978Daphne du Maurier
Dorothy B. Hughes
Ngaio Marsh
1994Lawrence Block2011Sara Paretsky
1958Vincent Starrett1995Mickey Spillane2012Martha Grimes
1959Rex Stout1996Dick Francis2013Ken Follett
Margaret Maron
1961Ellery Queen1979Aaron Marc Stein1997Ruth Rendell
1962Erle Stanley Gardner1980W. R. Burnett1998Elizabeth Peters2014[3]Carolyn Hart
Robert Crais
1963John Dickson Carr1981Stanley Ellin1999P. D. James
1964George Harmon Coxe1982Julian Symons2000Mary Higgins Clark2015Lois Duncan
James Ellroy
1966Georges Simenon1983Margaret Millar2001Edward D. Hoch
1967Baynard Kendrick1984John le Carré2002Robert B. Parker2016Walter Mosley
1969John Creasey1985Dorothy Salisbury Davis2003Ira Levin2017Max Allan Collins
Ellen Hart
1970James M. Cain1986Ed McBain2004Joseph Wambaugh
1971Mignon G. Eberhart1987Michael Gilbert2005Marcia Muller2018Jane Langton
William Link
Peter Lovesey
1972John D. MacDonald1988Phyllis A. Whitney2006Stuart M. Kaminsky
1973Judson Philips
Alfred Hitchcock
1989Hillary Waugh2007Stephen King
1990Helen McCloy2008Bill Pronzini2019Martin Cruz Smith
1974Ross Macdonald1991Tony Hillerman2009James Lee Burke
Sue Grafton
1975Eric Ambler1992Elmore Leonard
1976Graham Greene1993Donald E. Westlake2010Dorothy Gilman

Raven Award

The Raven Awards are recorded in the Edgars Database of the Mystery Writers of America. [4]

Year Recipient Notes
1953 E.T. Guymon Jr. "For his outstanding library of mystery literature"
1954 Harrison Stanford Martland Retiring medical examiner, Essex County, New Jersey
1954 Tom Lehrer "For his mystery parodies"
1954 Dr. Thomas A. Gonzales Retiring medical examiner, New York City
1957 Dorothy Kilgallen Reader of the Year
1959 Franklin D. Roosevelt Reader of the Year, accepted by Eleanor Roosevelt
1959 Frederic G. Melcher On his retirement after 35 years with Publishers Weekly
1959 Lawrence G. Blochman "For long and distinguished service"
1960 Phyllis McGinley Mystery Fan of the Year
1960 Gail Patrick Jackson Executive producer, Perry Mason
1960 Alfred Hitchcock "For his contributions to the mystery genre"
1960 David C. Cook Best Detective Stories of the Year
1960 Ray Brennan "For crime reporting"
1961 Ilka Chase Reader of the Year
1962 The Defenders TV series
1965 Philip Wittenberg "For his long years of voluntary service"
1965 Dr. Milton Helpern "For his work in forensic medicine"
1967 Richard Watts Jr. Reader of the Year
1967 Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine "On its 26th anniversary and as the best showcase for mystery stories"
1968 Joey Adams Reader of the Year
1971 Judith Crist Reader of the Year
1975 CBS Radio Mystery Theater Produced by Himan Brown
1975 Royal Shakespeare Company Revival production
1975 Wide World Mystery ABC-TV
1976 Leo Margolies Editor, Mike Shayne Mystery Magazine
1976 Eddie Lawrence Reader of the Year
1978 Richard N. Hughes "I Am My Brother's Keeper"
1978 Edward Gorey For the sets he designed for Dracula on Broadway
1978 Danny Arnold Executive producer, Barney Miller
1979 Alberto Tedeschi Publisher of the Mondadori mysteries
1980 The Muppet Show Episode, "Muppet Murders"[5]
1983 Isaac Bashevis Singer Reader of the Year
1983 Sylvia Porter Reader of the Year
1985 Eudora Welty Reader of the Year
1986 Suzi Oppenheimer Reader of the Year
1988 Vincent Price
1988 Angela Lansbury
1989 Shear Madness Longest running off-Broadway play
1989 Bouchercon Annual World Mystery Convention
1991 Sarah Booth Conroy Reader of the Year
1991 Carol Brener "For her skill in selling books to the public"
1992 Harold Q. Masur "For his years of service to MWA as general counsel"
1993 Bill Clinton Reader of the Year
1995 Paul LeClerc President, New York Public Library
1996 Library of America "For their publication of the collected writings of Raymond Chandler"
1997 Marvin Lachman
1998 Sylvia K. Burack Editor, The Writer magazine
1999 Steven Bochco
2000 Harold Augenbraum Director, The Mercantile Library
2001 Enid Schantz, Tom Schantz The Rue Morgue Press
2002 Barbara G. Peters The Poisoned Pen mystery bookstore
2002 Anthony Mason, Douglas Smith Correspondent and producer of "The Fine Print", CBS Sunday Morning profiles of mystery writers[6]
2002 Charles Champlin Book critic, Los Angeles Times
2003 Edgar Allan Poe Museum Richmond, Virginia
2003 Pat Thomas, Ed Thomas Book Carnival mystery bookstore, Orange, California[7]
2003 Otto Penzler The Mysterious Bookshop
2004 Graydon Carter and Vanity Fair "In recognition of their coverage of true crime"
2004 Bowling Green State University Ray and Pat Browne Library for Popular Culture Studies,"in recognition of its long-standing work in collecting and preserving detective fiction"
2005 Martha Farrington Murder by the Book bookstore, Houston, Texas
2005 Diane Kovacs, Kara Robinson Founders, DorothyL listserv
2005 Steve Oney Founder, Cape Cod Radio Mystery Theatre
2006 Joan Hansen Creator, Men of Mystery Conference
2006 Bonnie Claeson, Joe Guglielmelli Black Orchid Bookshop
2007 Kathy Harig, Tom Harig Mystery Loves Company Bookstore
2007 Mitchell Kaplan Books & Books
2008 Center for the Book Library of Congress
2009 Edgar Allan Poe House and Museum Baltimore, Maryland
2009 Edgar Allan Poe Society Baltimore, Maryland
2010 Richard Goldman, Mary Alice Gorman Mystery Lovers Bookshop, Oakmont, Pennsylvania[8]
2010 Zev Buffman International Mystery Writers Festival
2011 Pat Frovarp, Gary Shulze Once Upon a Crime Mystery Bookstore, Minneapolis, Minnesota[9]
2011 Augie Aleksy Centuries and Sleuths Bookstore
2012 Molly Weston Meritorious Mysteries
2012 Ed Kaufman M is for Mystery
2013 Mysterious Galaxy Bookstore San Diego, California
2013 Oline Cogdill Mystery fiction columnist and critic[10]
2014 Aunt Agatha's Bookstore Ann Arbor, Michigan
2015 Kathryn Kennison Magna Cum Murder
2015 Ruth and Jon Jordan Crimespree magazine
2016 Margaret Kinsman mentor, teacher, scholar, Executive Editor of Clues: A Journal of Detection
2016 Sisters in Crime organization of women crime writers
2017 Dru Ann Love writer and editor of the blog Dru's Book Musings
2018 The Raven Bookstore Lawrence, Kansas
2019 Marilyn Stasio Crime Columnist - The New York Times Book Review

See also


  1. "Contact the National Office of Mystery Writers of America". Retrieved 2013-04-21.
  2. Piccoli, Sean; Gold, Michael (November 28, 2018). "After Furor, Literary Group Withdraws Honor for 'Central Park Five' Prosecutor". The New York Times. Retrieved 28 December 2018.
  3. "Robert crais and Carolyn Hart chosen as the 2014 Grand Masters by Mystery Writers of America". Retrieved 2014-01-15.
  4. "The Raven Awards". Edgars Database. Mystery Writers of America. Retrieved 2015-07-11.
  5. "The Muppet Show: Season 4, Episode 14 – Liza Minnelli". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 2015-07-11.
  6. Starr, Michael (April 24, 2002). "Starr Report". New York Post.
  7. Takahama, Valerie (October 7, 2004). "Partners in Crime". Orange County Register.
  8. Wilberding, Beth (December 10, 2009). "Buffman receives national mystery award". Messenger-Inquirer. Owensboro, Kentucky.
  9. Hertzel, Laurie (April 16, 2011). "Crime Pays for Bookstore". Star Tribune.
  10. "Contributors". Mystery Scene. Retrieved 2015-07-11.
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