Saturday, April 13, 2013

Guest Blogger Kaye Barley Sends You on A Scavenger Hunt

By Guest Blogger Kaye Barley

First of all, my thanks to the Cozy Chicks for having me.  I appreciate it.

I'm learning that labels have a great deal about where and how a person and/or a book is accepted, so I'm spending a lot of time trying to learn about them.

Let's start with "Cozy Chicks," for example.

"Cozy" - - - Defined by Mirriam-Webster as follows:


1: a padded covering especially for a teapot to keep the contents hot
2: a light detective story that usually features a well-educated protagonist and little explicit violence
and, as an

1 - : enjoying or affording warmth and ease,

: marked by or providing contentment or comfort

There are additional definitions, of course, but we're just going to stick with these for now.

Which brings us to "chicks."  We all know what chicks are.  Intelligent women who rock.  Or, baby chickens, so we won't even mess with Mirriam-Webster.

So.  Today I'm joining a group of intelligent women who write light (a subjective term, at best) detective stories providing contentment or comfort, OR a group of baby chickens who might be sitting around a teapot dressed in a sweater providing warmth and ease (phrased however you prefer).


I'm always happy to be here, and I'm especially happy to be here this time as a writer.  A "self-published" writer (note:  a label, a true label, but a label which can bring a mighty frown to many a face, along with an assumption that it's probably dreck and not worth their time).

My novel WHIMSEY: A NOVEL, isn't a mystery, so we can't really call it a cozy even though the brilliant Lesa Holstine did compare it to Ellery Adams' work.  (squeeeee! I love her!).  And, because the Island of Whimsey does possess a bit of magic, Ellery's Charmed Pie Shoppe would fit in with the rest of Whimsey quite nicely.  Speaking of magic - Heather writes "magic."  Wonderful magic!

Actually, looking at the rest of the Cozy Chicks (did I mention that I really enjoy the
work of all these women?) I see some more things I find particularly interesting.  Cozies are known for their cats.  Leann writes a wonderful series featuring cats.  Whimsey has a cat named Pywacket.  Whimsey also has a corgi who likes to read The Wall Street Journal, a beekeeper, artists and artisans, a flower shop, a bakery, good food, vintage clothing and a group of people who love the beauty and simplicity of life in a small town (with the occasional snake in the grass).  If WHIMSEY: A NOVEL were a mystery, I guess it would be a cozy.  Since it's not a mystery, I don't know what it is.  But since it's also been compared to work by Sarah Addison Allen's (squeeeee! I I love her!), it could be called "magical realism" except there are some definitions which declare "magical realism" as dark, which WHIMSEY is not.


Never mind.

Enough about labels.

Instead I'm going to send you on a bit of a scavenger hunt.  An easy version.

You could win a $20 gift card from The Cozy Chicks, or you could win a copy of WHIMSEY from me. That's two winners, folks!

Just go to my webpage and you'll find the first chapter of WHIMSEY.  (You'll also find a lot of other very cool stuff, so I hope you'll take a few minutes to browse around).  In the first chapter you'll be able to find the answer to three questions.  Leave your answers in the comments, and we'll draw two names.  Ellery Adams will draw the name winning the gift card, and I'll draw the name winning a copy of WHIMSEY.

Easy peasy!  Here's the webpage address -

Here's your three questions:

1.  Where was the protagonist, Emma, living at the beginning of the novel?

2.  What does Emma do for a living?

3.  Who does Emma receive an email from?

Thanks everyone, and if you have comments about all the labels categorizing books, I'd love to hear them.  Am I the only person who thinks the labeling has, perhaps, gone too far?