Should you desire to write detective fiction, you will want to give your detective some distinguishing decorative characteristic. Since all the plots have been written three times over already, it's how you dress them up that counts.
Will your hero/heroine be a clown detective, a gardener detective, a detective made of cheese? They say it's best to write what you know, which is why my detective would be a TV critic detective (possible titles: "Saturday Night Dead," "Mary Tyler Murder," "Beverly Hills 9021Ohmygod"), just as forensic anthropologist Kathy Reichs made hers a forensic anthropologist -- her novels inspired the television series "Bones" -- and Ellen Byerrum, who has worked as a reporter in Washington, D.C., made hers a reporter in Washington, D.C.
Two novels from Byerrum's Crimes of Fashion series have been adapted by Lifetime for the small screen, which is the right-sized screen for them. The first, "Killer Hair," premieres Sunday, and although it is less than perfect -- the mystery not especially gripping, the resolution almost arbitrary, the characters low on substance and sometimes sense -- it is nevertheless pretty consistently enjoyable. And it has the advantage over many Lifetime movies in that no one is terminally ill, unless you want to consider murder a kind of fatal condition.