I began my career in romance, and after writing more than fifty romantic comedies, I branched out to cozies with the Southern Cousins Mystery series. With the common denominator of comedy, the transition from character-driven love stories to plot-driven cozies was easy for me.
Typically, I can write a Southern Cousins cozy in six to eight weeks. And that includes built-in time for family emergencies. Because I’m dealing with the same set of characters in each book, I simply fall into their skins and let myself enjoy a light-hearted romp through murder and mayhem.
Writing literary fiction requires more of everything from me – time, research, complexity, intricate plotting, interweaving secondary plots, clear understanding of theme. I’m still telling a story I love. That’s true. But I’m digging much deeper into my own psyche to tell it. I’m juggling more plots and always cognizant of my craft. And I’m using a period in history that directly impacts the characters while weaving it into the story so that it appears seamless instead of intrusive.
One of my literary fiction novels took more than ten years to write (The Sweetest Hallelujah, Elaine Hussey). Most of them took at least two years of intensive writing.
Readers often ask which I enjoy more, writing cozies or literary fiction. I tell them both. And that’s true. Elvis and the gang give me a respite from the huge outpouring of emotional and mental energy required to write literary fiction. And literary fiction gives me the satisfaction of being compared with some of my own literary heroes. Reviewers have put my work as Elaine Hussey in the arena with Harper Lee, Eudora Welty, Flannery O’Connor and Carson McCullers. I’ll take that company.
Currently I’m working on another literary fiction novel (as Elaine) and a couple of cozy short stories (as Peggy) for Christmas.
Thank you for stopping by. Be sure to check out my latest Southern Cousins Mystery, Elvis and the Rock-A-Hula Baby Capers (Nov. 2015). There are some great soup recipes in this book! It’s available in both ebook and print. Visit my websites to learn more: www.peggywebb.com and www.elainehussey.com.
USA Today Bestselling Author Peggy Webb is trying to finish her Christmas shopping and rehearsing with the choir at First United Methodist in Tupelo for their awesome Christmas service, which will be performed with an orchestra in the sanctuary on December 13 at 8:30 and 11:00.