Cozy Mystery author, Sara Rosett, joins Alida and Kathryn to discuss the mystery genre. We talk characters and their roles and development specific to the mystery genre.





What is a cozy mystery? And how do you develop the right cast of characters to fit inside of one? What skills to they need? And who do they need around them? We discuss genre conventions for mysteries in general, and cozy mysteries specifically. Don’t forget your law enforcement, or your red herrings!

Find Sara at

What we talked about:

What does Sara write? (1:40)

What makes a good protagonist within a mystery? (2:48)

What special skills will your protagonist need? (5:44)

Has Sara had to develop new skills in order to write these mysteries? (8:42)

What other qualities other than curiosity or specific skills do your detectives need? (9:40)

How do you keep upping the stakes over long series of mysteries with the same amateur sleuth? (12:52)

Mandatory mystery character – sidekick. (13:58)

Mandatory mystery character – the law enforcement detective. (16:00)

What about point of view in mystery? (18:13)

What about character arc’s in cozy mystery series? (21:14)

How important is being able to drop in anywhere in the series? (22:53)

What other types of characters are mandatory in mysteries? (26:25)

How can you use closed communities to help craft your mysteries? (26:59)

Who dies? And where is the emotional distance for the reader in cozy mysteries? (30:49)

How do reader expectations and tolerances effect character and crime development? (32:21)

How do you create red herrings? (35:05)



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