Why Write Mysteries?

by Meredith Cole

Why crime? Why do I write about violence and murder? Great question. And it’s definitely one I’ve heard before from people (although it’s mostly people who don’t read mysteries).

I write about crime for the same reason I read about crime. It’s compelling. And death is the ultimate drama. It’s worth reading 300 pages to find out why or who or what happened.

We are all fascinated by death. We feel compelled to watch shows that feature serial killers and mysterious murders. We are probably both searching for answers and also trying to protect ourselves in the future. We can walk away from a story about someone killed while hitchhiking, for instance, and tell ourselves that we would never do that so we’re somehow safe.

I don’t really focus my fiction on the kinds of people for whom a life of crime is a daily affair. I like to write about people who perhaps have never seen a dead body or have never had their life threatened before. Murder is still shocking for them, and hopefully also for the reader.

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