What is a supernatural mystery anyway?

When I tell friends that I finished Muddy River Mystery One and put it on Amazon, they ask, “What is it?”

Well, a mystery.  That’s in the title.  Muddy River is the town on the Ohio River that the supernaturals settled.  They found a nice, hilly, secluded area in southwest Indiana, far from mortals, to call home.

“The supernatural?” they ask.

Yup, witches, vampires, shapeshifters, and demons, among others.  Most friends know that I used to write urban fantasy.  And now I’m writing mysteries.  So I decided to combine the two.  Sort of like the Babet and Prosper novellas that I used to write.    Prosper was a bearshifter and his partner on the force, Hatchet, was a Druid.

I like writing about Druids.  Of course, I jazz them up a bit.  My Druids can call on lightning to strike and their tattoos are alive and writhe when they’re angry.  It’s Prosper and Hatchet’s job to solve crimes committed by supernaturals who break the rules.

Prosper teams with Babet, a witch, to solve a murder.  In Muddy River, Raven Black–a fire demon–teams with Hester Wand– a witch–to solve the deaths of thirteen young witches who were just starting their own coven.  Of course–no suprise here–while they work together, they fall for each other.

“Oh, a paranormal romance!” someone says.

“No, wrong emphasis.  A paranormal romance has the romance as the story’s main focus.  Raven and Hester’s relationship is more of a subplot.  The mystery forms the main plotline in my story.”

“Why is it different than an urban fantasy?  You started with those.”

“Urban fantasies are about the bad guys, usually evil, bumping heads with the good guys–the protagonist and his friends.  The battles escalate until it’s life or death at the end of the book.  This book, even though it has a few battles, is about solving the mystery.”

This is when my friends usually scratch their heads.  But fellow writers–they’ll understand.  The main plot line is what distinguishes one kind of story from another.  And this story is …a mystery with a romance subplot in a world peopled by Fae, Druids, witches, vampires, shifters, and one banshee.  And it was really fun to write!  As fun as Babet and Prosper.

A close friend and fellow writer still looks at me, bewildered.  “But why?  Your cozy mysteries are doing so well.”

All writers know that it’s dangerous to switch genres.  People who read cozy mysteries might not want anything to do with a fire demon for an enforcer.

Well, I didn’t know how well The Body in the Attic would sell when I started my second series, did I?  It came as a wonderful, happy surprise.  But I’m not sure it would have made a lot of difference.  I tend to lose interest if I read one author, one genre, over and over again, back to back.  Sorry to say, but that holds true of my writing, too.  I really do love the cozy mysteries I write, but I need to change it up once in a while, or else my writing goes flat.

I have no idea if I can find success with Muddy River, but I’d written three cozies, and I needed a witch or two to break things up.  And it worked.  I’m ready to dig into serious rewrites for Jazzi and Ansel’s fourth book now.

Whatever you’re writing, whatever your writing habits, have a great week of it!


12 thoughts on “What is a supernatural mystery anyway?

  1. I completely understand the bewilderment of trying to explain a supernatural mystery, especially when it may contain threads of other genres like suspense and/or romance. There are so many blurry gray lines it crosses over. I’m currently 50% through my current read and your Muddy River novel is next on my list.

    If you plan to do any promo, I’d be happy to host you on my blog. Just give me a shout if you’d like a spot!

    Liked by 2 people

      1. No worries at all. And I’m thrilled you liked Dante.He started out as a minor character in the first book and then just took over from there. He’s one of the MCs in book 3, Eventide, too!

        And I’m sure I’ll love Muddy River.I think it’s great Judi has decided to indie publish some titles!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m so happy you’re going to read it! Thank you. Hope you like it. I have a friend who gets great results from placing Amazon ads for her books, but she admits it takes some trial and error. I’ve been playing with one, but so far, I’ve had all error. I don’t seem to get the concept. Thanks for the offer of hosting me on your blog. I appreciate it, but I seem to be all thumbs on how to market this one:)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m looking forward to discovering the new characters, Judi.I’ve never tried Amazon ads. I can’t seem to figure them out. I think it’s harder to market these days. It seems nothing works—without dumping a ton of $$ into BB ads! Wishing you much success and I hope the Amazon route works. One of these days I’m going to sit down and figure it out, LOL!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. As a multi-genre reader and writer, I get it. The same thing over and over can get boring. It does make solidifying an audience trickier, though.

    But I have no doubt you’ll find readers for all your work. I’ve read two of your novels now and enjoyed both very much. When you write well, people will appreciate it. Best wishes, Judi!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s