I Entered THE REALTOR’S CURSE in a Book Contest and Won, Twice

I entered my most recent novel in the Firebird Book Award book contest. After a forty-year career as a pharmacologist working in drug development, I retired to write murder mysteries. I find great joy in writing. It really gets my creative juices flowing. Murder mysteries have always been my passion; I am an avid reader of authors like Agatha Christie, JA Jance and Robert B. Parker. I have published my books, some with a publisher and others through self-publishing. My writing career began with a couple of dark murder mysteries, but the ones that bring me true joy to write are the comedy murder mysteries, the ones I am calling Medical Biotech Murder Mysteries. Book Contes

My idea for the Medical Biotech Murder Mystery came from my career experience. As a pharmacologist, one of my jobs included evaluating the potential side effects of each new medicine to determine if it should be developed to market. I took this job very seriously. But now I’m retired, and free to have some fun. Book Contest

So, I decided to try a look at a potential humorous side to this process. For example, scientists and doctors manipulate your DNA, immune system and cells to make new state-of-the-art medicines today. Just imagine what could go wrong if they make a mistake and screw up your DNA. Perhaps it could cause you to grow a tail, mess with your brain, grow a second brain, turn you into a killer, or a comedian, increase your libido, increase or decrease your lifespan…any number of things. Book Contest

And the real challenge for me? How to work this into the plot of a murder mystery, and a comedy murder mystery at that. This challenge has really gotten my creative juices flowing, and I am having an absolute blast writing these books. Book Contest

The two main characters in my Medical Biotech Murder Mysteries are a married couple, Dr. Jason Longfellow, PI and his nurse wife, Chelsea. Jason is convinced that he runs the show; after all he does have a PI license that he got off the internet. However, let’s just say that Chelsea can hold her own. Book Contest

The first book, PLEASURIA, included a failed clinical trial and a very unusual drug side effect, leading to murder. My second, MURDER BY ROAD TRIP, included the main character and his family traveling cross-country to California in an RV, with someone trying to kidnap him and steal his teeth along the way. And my third and brand-new book, THE REALTOR’S CURSE, is staged in St. Augustine (write what you know), where the main character and his wife try to buy a vacation condo with disastrous consequences; lots of dead bodies and angry realtors. Poor Florida will never be the same. Book Contest

All three books have plots that are based on a medical biotech principle. Don’t shy away because of the science. In each book, there’s just enough science to clearly explain the plot, the plot is borderline absurd, and there’s plenty of fun with the wacky PI stumbling around trying to follow the clues and catch the killer while his nurse wife patiently tries to keep him in line and focused (and sometimes not so patiently). Book Contest

I am having a blast writing these humorous murder mysteries and it’s great fun as the characters continue to develop, Chelsea more so than Jason. I’ve sold some books and received excellent reviews from both fellow authors and readers. Regardless, I couldn’t help but wonder how my latest book, THE REALTOR’S CURSE, might stack up to other current books in the Mystery and Humor categories. So, I decided to enter the book in the Firebird Book Awards to find out. Book Contest

I entered THE REALTOR’S CURSE in both the Mystery and Humor categories for first quarter, 2022. I honestly had no idea how this would work out. There are millions of books out there, with a million or more new ones appearing every year. Book Contest

The winners of the first quarter Firebird Book Awards for 2022 were just announced, and THE REALTOR’S CURSE won first place in both the Mystery and Humor categories. You could have knocked me over with a feather. I have been writing for six years and knew that my writing has been improving with each book. But I never dreamed one of my books would win a book award, and certainly not in two separate genres. Book Contest

An intriguing murder mystery is difficult to write, and humor is even more difficult. It’s a great feeling to know that, at least for this one book and this one book contest, the judges felt that I had succeeded at both. It was enough for me that I was having a great time writing these books. It’s over the top that four judges thought THE REALTOR’S CURSE was well worth the read. Just for today, I’m one happy writer. Book Contest 

To read the first 3 chapters of THE REALTOR’S CURSE for free and for links to buy the book, go to https://johnjjessop.com. It’s available as eBook or paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and bookstores everywhere.

If you want to go ahead and buy the book on Amazon, go to https://amzn.to/3gCnCZ6