We are pleased to announce there will be a short story anthology for Bouchercon 2023 – Murder at the Marina.

San Diego. A place known for its blue skies, sandy beaches, and swaying palms. But what happens when that sunny façade cracks and the darkness beneath is revealed?

We can’t wait to find out.

We’re looking for stories set in and around Southern California, or, if you must, California in general. Murder, mayhem, heists, revenge tales, locked door mysteries, noir—Raymond Chandler is buried in San Diego, by the way—if you write the crime, we’ve got the time (and place).

Our goal is to raise money for our charity (to be announced soon). All of the proceeds, after publishing costs, will  go to the charity, along with the proceeds from our live and silent auctions.

In addition to invited stories from our guests of honor, the anthology will feature stories selected through blind submission.

Working Title: Peril Under the Palms

Editor: Holly West

Submission guidelines: 

Short stories must be crime fiction, less than 5000 words, and stories must not have been published anywhere else previously.

The deadline for submission is extended to November 5, 2022.

Please submit stories via email and in Word documents to with the subject line BOUCHERCON ANTHOLOGY SUBMISSION: [NAME OF STORY].

Please include your name, email, and any other contact information we might need in the email but the stories should be blind submission (no identifying information on the file name or in the document). 

In addition to stripping all identifying info from the document, pleases submit in standard short story format. If you are unfamiliar with that format, you can see an example here (except for the info on putting your name, contact info, etc. on the story).

The stories will be read blind by a small committee of readers and the editor. The editor will make final decisions and then lead the authors through any polishing needed in their manuscripts.

If selected, we will send you a contract assigning Bouchercon the rights for your story for one year after the publication date. After that, the rights revert to you. Expect to hear from us by Spring 2023 with acceptance/rejection news (more details on when very soon).

If your story is selected, you will be paid $75.00 so you meet the guidelines for certain awards in our industry. You will also receive a free copy.

We will be holding a signing at Bouchercon 2023.

Holly West, Editor

Holly West is the Anthony Award-nominated author of the Mistress of Fortune historical mystery series. Her debut, Mistress of Fortune, was nominated for the Left Coast Crime Rosebud Award for Best First Novel. Her short fiction has appeared online and in numerous anthologies, and her latest story, “Just to Watch Him Die,” appears in The Eviction of Hope anthology. She’s the editor of Murder-A-Go-Go’s, an Anthony Award-nominated crime fiction anthology inspired by the music of The Go-Go’s. Her novella, The Money Block, out now from Down & Out Books. Born and raised in California and a former long-time resident of Los Angeles, Holly now lives with her husband, Mick, and dogs, Stella and Brando, in Folsom, California.