Is it true that all the best ideas are already taken? In a world where everyone is writing and self-publishing and traditionally publishing genre series, is there anything left unexplored?
See, I have a hankering to write a cozy mystery series, one with a character I absolutely adore and want to spend many hours with as she solves puzzling crimes. Every cozy mystery series needs a hook: the main character’s a witch or owns a cat or runs a bookshop or is a member of a knitting club. I wanted to set my series in a milieu that would keep me entertained and intrigued right along with my reader. I wanted it to be fun. I wanted it to be something that makes me–and my readers–go all gooey and goofy when we aren’t biting our nails to find out the identity of the murderer.
So, I had a brilliant idea. I was sure someone would have thought of it already, so I did a quick look on Amazon yesterday. I saw lots of cozy mysteries that were similar to, but not exactly what I had in mind. Could it be this simple? Had I stumbled onto some rare blip in the cozy mystery universe?
This morning I dug in a little deeper, and of course I discovered that there is already a whole series of books exactly like the ones I wanted to write, doggone it!
I really shouldn’t be surprised because this idea rocks, so now I have to ask myself if the world can support two (and let’s face it, probably more if I keep digging) series set in the same subculture. It’s not as if there aren’t many cozy mystery series with similar settings whether you’re talking coffee shops, tea shops, B & B’s, bookstores, etc. I’m sure I could go ahead with this, but, discovering a 24-book series already written with this hook took the shine off the idea. I don’t want to be a copycat.
This totally bummed me out today, peeps! So, what do you think? Should I go ahead with the idea? I DID think about the possibility of setting the series in the past….like the 1950s or even 1930s which would mean a ton more research, but that’s okay. Or should I scrap it and go with something else?
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