Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Save the Cozies

   Well, Big Publishing did it again. With the merge of Penguin and Random House, the powers- that- be decided there were too many cozy mysteries on the market. Now it’s slash & burn time as authors find their series discontinued.
   I’m having déjà vu. In the 90’s, as I was finishing my first Christy Bristol mystery, the bottom fell out of the mystery genre. All the houses were cutting out one mystery line and retaining only the top selling authors. Midlist authors were abandoned.
   People stepped up to the plate and created independent houses. With print-on-demand technology and computers, anyone could be a publisher. Amazon gave validity to ebooks and self-published authors.
   I have felt the cozy market was saturated. Every hobby has a mystery, everyone is an amateur detective with a law enforcement boyfriend or ex. Authors were even assigned subject matter. The main readers are women. Perhaps this is an effort to give hard-boiled mysteries a stronger market. Men who write them already make more money.
   If you love mysteries, there are things you can do: follow authors you love on their Facebook page, webpages, blogs and twitter. Subscribe to their newsletters. Pre-order your books—first week sales are important. And complain! Let Random House know how you feel. Here’s the link:


Jewel Amethyst said...

This industry is ever-achanging. There is no predictability in this market and when one genre has a breakout bestseller that consumes everything, the publishers seem to encourage copycats and other writers try to ride the wave. That floods the market to the point you can't even give them away for free.

My solution: keep writing what you're writing and the hell with it! Write for the love of it. The marketing part is a huge head and heartache.

James R. Callan said...

I love cozies. Okay, that's not too important. But, I know so many readers who really like the cozy. They are tired of those novels that try to shock by pushing out the cutting edge. I truly believe there is a place for the cozy.

Charles Gramlich said...

Straight mysteries are one of the few genres that I seldom read. I do enjoy them and read some, but they don't usually fall on my priority read file.

Linda Thorne said...

When you first told me about this, it was a little scary. I love cozies, but I prefer the ones that step outside the bounds of soft cozies and wonder if those authors can get out of this possible problem by defining their books without the cozy genre. There are a lot of book series with the craft, the tea, the cats and all held within the cozy genre boundaries. So many of them seem more traditional mystery to me. I think your books could be considered more mystery than cozy mystery.

Liane Spicer said...

Linda's on to something, I think. It's a label created for marketing purposes. They're killing the cozies? Relabel, retool, call it something else.