I don’t know if I like to write about crime so much as I like to write about puzzles. I’m an avid fan of all puzzles, including crosswords, sudokus, word problems, mazes, jigsaw puzzles, and of course, mysteries.
When I was a kid, I loved many different series, including Encyclopedia Brown and the Three Investigators. While there were no dead bodies in these books (except for the occasional skeleton in a cave or talking mummy), there was usually an element of crime. Who stole the missing lunch money? Where had all the neighborhood pets gone? I was never much interested in the actual crime, though. What I wanted to do was try to sniff out the clues that would tell me who the perpetrator was.
When I first started writing, I thought about what genre I was going to write in, which made me think about what books I liked to read. My bookcase was full of novels where people spent their time finding evidence and solving crimes. Add to that the fact that I’m completely unable to write a romantic scene without breaking into a fit of giggles, and writing mysteries seemed like the obvious choice. Sure there is usually a subplot of romance running through a mystery book, but I write cozies. They tend to have very mild romance, with occasional kissing but not much more. There’s nary a bodice being ripped anywhere, and certainly no one’s loins are quivering.
This G-rated romance lets me keep the focus on the mystery my character is trying to figure out. While my books have plenty of crime, especially murders, it’s creating the clues that point to the guilty party that keeps me writing.