Guest Post by Lynn Cahoon + Giveaway

Posted February 4, 2016 by Stormi in Misc. / 17 Comments

cozy eventI would like to welcome Lynn Cahoon to my blog today. I hope you all enjoy her incites on the making of a cozy mystery.  I have listened to her Tourist Trap Mysteries and I love them. I can’t wait to get her newest one Murder on Wheels!  She is going to giveaway a copy

Lynn Cahoon author of The Tourist Trap Mysteries

Writing the cozy series…

Hey mystery readers! Stormi asked me to write a guest post about writing the mystery series. I’ve got seven books written in the Tourist Trap mysteries, so I guess I should know what I’m talking about. ☺  

For me, writing the series starts with the premise. What’s the central idea that brings all the books together? For Tourist Trap, it was South Cove, the quaint little tourist town on the California coast. I knew I wanted all the books to feature the town, and the little shops that populate Main Street.

In the Cat Latimer series, (A STORY TO KILL –releases September 2015), the central idea is the Victorian house that Cat inherits when her ex-husband dies. The house is located in a small college town and Cat turns her windfall into a writers retreat.  

Other cozies focus on crafts or food (yum) or communities.

Then you have to bring in your characters. A visit to South Cove is like checking in on all your favorite neighbors. What’s going on with Aunt Jackie? How are Jill and Greg doing? Will they ever get to take a real vacation? And what’s made Lille grow a heart?

With each book, I highlight a new character. For Jill, she gets to play detective with several of her friends. Aunt Jackie took a turn in Killer Run, Sadie tagged along in Dressed to Kill, and Amy got to show off mad stain glass skills in If the Shoe Kills.  

I’m also adding new characters as the series progresses. One, I need new characters to be able to up the body count without killing off a favorite character in the process. My sister told me I could never kill off Toby, the part time police detective/part time barista. (She’s kind of got a crush on him. Book Boyfriend Alert.) But two, adding new businesses and new owners, like Harrold who runs The Train Station, helps build up South Cove, one book at a time. By the time the series is finished, we’ll have a real town here.

And that’s the point I want to leave you with today. For me, writing a series is like visiting my imaginary friends. They may not be around all the time, but when I do return to sunny South Cove or snowy Aspen Hills to visit Cat and the gang, it’s like coming home.

And I hope you all feel the same way when you pick up one of my books.


murder on wheelsMurder on Wheels – Releasing February 2, 2016

The food truck craze has reached the charming coastal town of South Cove, California, but before Jill Gardner—owner of Coffee, Books, and More—can sample the eats, she has to shift gears and put the brakes on a killer . . .

Now that Kacey Austin has got her new gluten-free dessert truck up and running, there’s no curbing her enthusiasm—not even when someone vandalizes the vehicle and steals her recipes. But when Kacey turns up dead on the beach and Jill’s best friend Sadie becomes the prime suspect, Jill needs to step on it to serve the real killer some just desserts.



Lynn Cahoon is the author of the NYT and USA Today bestselling Tourist Trap cozy mystery series. Guidebook to Murder, book 1 of the series won the Reader’s Crown for Mystery Fiction in 2015. She’s also the author of the soon to be released, Cat Latimer series, with the first book, A STORY TO KILL, releasing in mass market paperback September 2016.She lives in a small town like the ones she loves to write about with her husband and two fur babies. Sign up for her newsletter at

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17 responses to “Guest Post by Lynn Cahoon + Giveaway

  1. I love the idea of building up the town by adding new characters. I’m fairly new to cozies but I have enjoyed ones where the characters (and setting) grow as the books progress. The Tourist Trap mysteries look great and I look forward to trying them soon (the covers are great too, always catch my eye).

  2. This book is on my wish list! I just love that hippie van and cozies are one of my addictions. LOL The series sounds fun too, with several different themes. Sounds like everything I look for in a good cozy:)

  3. Great post! It was interesting reading about how you write your series. I bought the first Tourist Trap book last year and I hope I can read it soon. I like getting to know a town and the characters better once a series porgresses and it’s fun to meet new characters along the way as well.

    The focus on a craft, hobby or job in cozy mysteries is one of the things I like. It’s interesting to learn more about those things and they add some flavour to the series.

  4. holdenj

    I can’t wait to return to South Cove. I really like the setting and the characters that inhabit this town. Thanks!

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