Hi there, guys and dolls! This week, my dear friend George Jackson started a very interesting discussion among cozy readers and writers. He’s the author of THE FALLS Small Town Mysteries, among other literary works. He asked a very simple question that so many of my fellow friends — authors and readers alike contributed to, sharing their views and insights in to what makes a Cozy a “Cozy.” It turned out to be a fascinating discussion that yours truly thoroughly enjoyed. So settle yourself in and I’ll share with you some ideas and thoughts that were brought up in our chat.
The majority of people shared with the concept that they are mysteries with very little bloodshed, graphic sex or violence. The language should be clean, with the occasional cuss word being okay to make a strong point, with interesting and likeable protagonists, who most likely are amateur sleuths. A sense of humor, straightforward or black is appreciated to lighten the mood. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a series or have a cute cover, although neither of those hurt, and it doesn’t even have to have a happy ending, but a conclusion all the same. Many people mentioned strong objections to harm being done to children or animals, which I certainly agree upon.
Cozies, as the name implies, are gentle, even if they show the criminal nature of humanity. They have characters we can relate to and quite often gain a strong affinity for, feeling that they must be real people somewhere out there. The scope of a cozy is neat and tidy, the crimes conclusive, curiosity solved, the bad guys (or gals) caught and justice is served. In a world that we live in where so many sad and scary things stay open and unresolved, perhaps that is the coziest aspect of all.