I'm participating in the Crazy Cozy Mystery blogfest over at Confessions of a Watery Tart. It's a combined effort between Hart Johnson, writing as Alyse Carlson (The Azalea Assault) and Elizabeth Craig from Mystery Writing is Murder (Quilt Or Innocence) in honor of their new cozy mystery releases on June 5, 2012.
To read the full rules, or a summary of what a Cozy Mystery is, or to find the list of participants, go HERE.
In short, here are the rules:
Crazy Cozy Blogfest
The idea is to think of the craziest, zaniest set-up for a cozy mystery you can—this is strictly for entertainment value—we don't plan to take these ideas and actually write series (though if you think YOU want to, go for it!). But we are asking you to come up with a wacky theme, a zany sleuth, a crazy setting for your OWN Crazy Cozy Mystery idea.
1) Sleuth (age, occupation, maybe a little family info)
2) Sidekick (either friend or foil, but someone who always seems to be around)
3) Setting (town, city, or other sort of place)
4) Theme (go nuts)
5) Twist (be as creative as you like)
Write it up in 150-250 words (so short)--for the blogfest portion anyway—we want people to be able to read a bunch of these without too much burden. Keep the traditions in mind, but we are judging on entertainment value--which we enjoy most, not how realistic it is to make a best seller. We want people to laugh. WE want to laugh. (so consider those rules more like guidelines, really).
HERE IS THE "craziest, zaniest set-up for a cozy mystery" I COULD COME UP WITH:
Best Laid Plans
Madam Penelope Pope runs the family brothel passed down from her grandmother, Prudence Pope. But she’s no Buxom beauty like grandma and business is slow. To encourage more business activity, Penny decides to put on a contest for the local businessmen of sleepy little Buxom Bosom, with full approval from the BBB (Businessmen for Buxom Bosom). The grand prize is the coveted Golden Globes – a life size bust of grandma’s bust, made of solid gold.
The contest is going well until...
The president of the BBB is caught dead with his pants down, and Penny’s best girl, Handy Mandy, is caught red-handed with her hands on the prize.
Penny knew Handy Mandy was "innocent," so the two set out to restore the hard-earned reputation as the best brothel in Buxom Bosom by conducting their own investigation to find the killer.
Will Penny blow the job? Or will she take matters in hand like a pro?
Okay, enough of the silliness! Check out these real cozy mystery blurbs from the real professionals:
by Alysa Carlson
nee Hart JohnsonQuilt or Innocence
As the newest member of the Village Quilters Guild, Beatrice has a lot of gossip to catch up on—especially with the Patchwork Cottage quilt shop about to close. It seems that Judith, the landlord everyone loves to hate, wants to raise the rent, despite being a quilter herself… But when Judith is found dead, the harmless gossip becomes an intricate patchwork of mischievous motives. And it’s up to Beatrice’s expert eye to decipher the pattern and catch the killer, before her life gets sewn up for good.
by Elizabeth Craig
Cam Harris loves her job as public relations manager for the Roanoke Garden Society. It allows her to combine her three loves, spinning the press, showing off her favorite town, and promoting her favorite activity. She's just achieved a huge coup by enlisting Garden Delights, the country's premiere gardening magazine, to feature the exquisite garden of RGS founder, Neil Patrick. She's even managed to enlist world-famous photographer Jean-Jacques Georges. Unfortunately, Jean-Jacques is a first-rate cad—insulting the RGS members and gardening, goosing every woman in the room, and drinking like a lush. It is hardly a surprise when he turns up dead. But when Cam's brother-in-law is accused and her sister begs her to solve the crime, that is when things really get prickly.