Often times when somebody asks me what I do for a living and I tell them I write cozy mysteries, a look of confusion comes across their face. They usually pause for a moment, and follow the expression up with the same old question:
"What's a cozy mystery?"
The mystery part is clear, but the cozy part is what many folks who are unfamiliar with the genre don't get right away. And sometimes, I'm not even sure how to describe to them what "cozy" is. Because yes - in most ways, the cozy mystery genre is straightforward and easy to explain. Usually the mysteries take place in a small, charming town. The main character is fun and quirky and likable. There's a love interest. Everything is great and running smoothly until... suddenly, a shocking crime occurs and the main character is forced to put on her amateur detective hat and solve the mystery.
That's cozy in a nutshell. But to me, that description in no way shape or form describes what cozy mysteries are really all about.
"Cozy" is a lot more than a generic formula. The thing that it really boils down to, for me anyway, is feeling good. Cozy means feeling warm and happy and safe inside. Of course, there's lots of murder and mayhem in cozy mysteries, but a big reason why the genre is so popular is because at the end of all that ugliness, there's a feel-good, heartwarming, spirit-lifting, and life-affirming moment that leaves you with a feeling of peace and reminds you that all works out right in the end.
That's what cozy means to me - feel-good moments. I think all of us could use more of those in our lives. And that's why I'm starting this new segment on my blog here. I'm calling this weekly posting #CozyMoment Friday. Every Friday, I'm going to share a little feel-good something from my week that's lifted my spirits somehow - whether it be a picture, an item, a recipe, or a story of some sort. It seems to me that much of the time, we get so busy in our lives - with work and family and responsibility. It's terrifyingly easy to let your life pass by without taking a moment to appreciate or reflect on the little things that make it worth living. So in a way, I look at this new feature on my blog as a way to stop, drop everything, and appreciate those feel-good moments that often don't get the recognition they deserve. Because a funny thing happens when you start looking for the good things in your life - you start finding more and more of them that you didn't know existed!
I hope that you'll all join me in this Friday feature and share some of your own cozy moments from the week either on the comments section of the blog here, or on my Facebook page. Cozy moments can be absolutely anything that made you feel good during the week, and can be shared in the form of pictures, videos, or stories. They can be humorous, serious, or profound. There is no such thing as a wrong cozy moment!
And for the first few weeks of this feature, I'll be giving away some free digital copies of my books at random to those who leave a comment, so be sure to check back in on Friday.
With that, I'm going to spend this week continuing work on Bulldogs & Bullets (it will be out in a few weeks!) while hunting for my #CozyMoment of the week.
Let's compare notes Friday! :)