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May 10, 2017


Elaine Viets

I like writing series, too, Dean, and the advantage of a series is they sell your past books as well as your future mysteries.

Hank Phillippi Ryan

So interesting! I can see the advantages to each one, and that would be a fun panel discussion to have, wouldn't it? I am working on my first standalone right now, in fact, and you are right – – it is an entirely different process.

cj petterson

cj Sez: I have written two standalones (Jane Bond style romantic suspense). I'm now starting what I think will be a short series...a novel, a novella, and a novel. The idea that I can string a character along for more than one book is scary to me. I've always been a "been there, done that" person, but you're right, Dean. A lot of people love a series. Thanks for posting.

catriona mcpherson

I don't buy the "unrealistic" line about amateur sleuths. In my humble opinion, all crime fiction is unrealistic. The truth is real murders are almost always brutal and stupid and yet we read police procedurals where cops pit their wits against clever killers with complex motives. Dark fantasy or light fantasy - pick your potato.

Dean James

Thanks for all the feedback. Catriona, I basically agree that all crime fiction is unrealistic. Private eye fiction is as "idealized" as cozy mysteries are, frankly.


Believe me, I know all the complaints about how unrealistic cozies are. And you know what? I don't care! Why? Because I completely enjoy them. And my favorite series are favorites exactly for the reasons you gave, Dean. The characters are friends, and I love spending time with them. Both your series absolutely fall into that category for me.

I have a few standalones around here, but I don't tend to read them. The latest in a favorite series is calling louder than the standalone because I already know and love the characters.

Laura DiSilverio

I write both series and standalones and enjoy them for different reasons. I like getting "closure" in the standalones, completing a character arc in one go. I like being able to build and revisit a community in the series. Isn't it great that there are readers for both kinds of books?!

Dean James

Mark, thanks for commenting! I appreciate your opinion, and your kind words about my books.

Dean James

Laura, I agree, it's great that there are both kinds. Makes for more options for readers and writers.

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