There's a barber I don't go to anymore, and here's why: He had a great (he thought) idea for a book.
Why should I hold that against him? After all, I'm a writer. I have lots of great (I think) ideas for books. What am I, jealous?
Here's the problem: The barber found out I’m an author, so he wanted me to write his book. It was going to be about a barber who's a hero to all the neighborhood kids. They come to him for advice, and he dispenses wisdom while cutting hair. If there was going to be an actual plot, the barber didn't mention it. He did say, however, that he would generously split all the profits with me…after I wrote the book and got it published.
It's kind of a bummer, because the guy was a good barber. And cheap. But I've got ideas of my own. Too many, in fact. Which is why I'm going to be giving some away today. And I won't even ask for 50%! I'll settle for a shout-out in the acknowledgments and a beer if we're ever at a writer's conference together.
With my buddy Lisa Falco, a fantabulous tarot expert, I used to write a series of cozy-ish tarot-themed mysteries. (I say the books are cozy-ish because I've been told that our heroine/narrator was too snarky to be a traditional cozy protagonist. To which I would reply, "Me and Lisa? Snarky? Chuh. As if. [Sneer. Eyeroll. Whatever 'W' with fingers.]" And I say "used to write" because the series didn't make it. Which Lisa actually foresaw in the cards before the first book came out. God's honest truth! She did a reading that perfectly predicted the rocky road the series would have. But that's a story for another day....) There's a big market for cozy (and cozy-ish) mysteries with interesting themes, and despite what certain barbers think I don't have time to write them all. So if you're looking to jump into the exciting world of mystery writing, feel free to do it with one of these ready-made series.
Murder Is Nothing to Sneeze At: An Allergies Mystery
Feisty (but not snarky) allergist Lanie Cooper dispenses allergy-fighting tips while hunting for the killer of a local pharmacist.
Death Can Get Stuffed: A Taxidermy and Embalming Mystery
Feisty (but not snarky) taxidermist Janie Hooper dispenses animal mounting tips while hunting for the killer of a local mortician.
Hair Today, Gone to Murder: A Hairstyling Mystery
Feisty (but not snarky) stylist Annie Jackson dispenses hair care tips to adoring neighborhood kids while hunting for the killer of a pushy barber.
Procrastination Can Be Murder: A…Uhh…A Something Something Something Mystery
Feisty (but not snarky) procrastinator Frannie Johnson dispenses the occasional self-motivation tip (when she feels like it) and thinks maybe she should get around to hunting for whoever killed that lady -- you know…what's her name? -- one of these days.
Murder Can Be Murder: A How-to-Get-Away-with-Murder Mystery
Feisty (but not snarky) murderer (and noted allergist) Lanie Cooper dispenses homicide tips while trying not to get caught for the killing of local procrastinator Frannie Johnson.
Website Updates Can Be Murder: An Author Promotion Mystery
Feisty (and kind of snarky) mystery writer Stephanie Hocken dispenses bad book ideas nicked from an earlier guest blog post in a desperate attempt to keep her website feeling fresh. If you end up writing this one, let me know. I can help you with the research.