Hair is Murder

Posted by Liz Jasper | 3:54 PM | 6 comments »

I got my hair cut yesterday. If you were a member of my family, you'd be making snide remarks now on the order of "it's about time." Of course, if you were a member of my family, you'd also be questioning what right I had to be writing about hair care. And I'd be responding back with a string of words inappropriate for this venue.

Where was I? Oh yes, hair care. Admittedly, I am no expert on hair care. But after years of slogging through school and doing research and being an analyst, I feel perfectly capable of asking a professional to share her expertise and then writing about it.

Which is exactly what I had planned when I made my hair appointment for yesterday and then signed up to blog today. But as is often the case, the conversation I imagined having with Molly and the conversation I actually had, were two different things.

Liz: (By way of introducing the topic of hair care) You know, I think I have to break down and have a headshot done. Do you have any suggestions for…

Natalie: (The receptionist) You should have Molly do your hair for it!

Liz: (Horrified at the very idea of doing it herself). Absolutely. Which brings me to…

Molly: How is your book doing?

Alex: (The hairstylist at the next chair). In your next book, you should have the murder take place in a salon. Have a take place here!

Natalie: That would be great! You should totally do that. You can call it Underdead With Scissors or something like that.

Molly: You could put us all in it!


What's interesting about this (yes, I know it's not the dialogue, as I've recounted it.) is that when I got my hair cut at a different place last year, the stylists and I had practically the same conversation. As soon as the topic of my mystery came up, they all leapt on the idea of me writing the next one about people getting killed in hair salons. Their hair salons. I could have the killer spike the hair coloring stuff with some sort of poison that absorbed through the skin or electrocute someone with a blow dryer, or do any number of unmentionably horrific things with scissors.

And it makes me wonder. What is it about being around hair all day that turns otherwise delightful people into bloodthirsty murder plotters? No other professionals I’ve encountered volunteer their place of business as a fictional crime scene.

I have no idea what’s in the water at local hair salons. But I can tell you this: when I do get my hair done for the headshot, I’m going to leave a note where I’ve gone. And do one of those “Mail my mother a list of their names” things characters do in mystery books. And leave a trail of breadcrumbs. And go during daylight hours. Just in case.

But I'm also going to bring a pen and a notepad, because some of their ideas aren't half bad… And with any luck, I may even learn something about hair care.

--Liz Jasper, whose hair looks GREAT today, even if she has no idea why, or how to replicate it without Molly welding the blow dryer.

(With apologies to Natalie, Molly and Alex)

Author of the cozy vampire mystery, UNDERDEAD, available now at


  1. Beth Trissel // August 29, 2007 at 8:35 PM  

    Your hair piece :) is a hoot. I loved it.


  2. Mona Risk // August 30, 2007 at 11:35 AM  

    Liz, Your idea of a murder in a beauty salon is great. Have you read the Bad Hair Day Mysteries by Nancy Cohen? She's in my FRW chapter. A series of hilarious murders, all in salons with Marla the investigator? Permed to Death, Hair Raiser, Murder by Manicure, Body Wave, etc....

  3. Liz Jasper // August 30, 2007 at 12:50 PM  

    Thanks Beth : )(hair piece.Beth!)

    And Mona, I haven't read that series, but thanks for the recommendation. : )I'm always on the lookout for a fun series to read. Though I hate to give the gang at my hair place any ideas... (j/k)

  4. Nancy Cohen // September 1, 2007 at 5:19 AM  

    As Mona said, I write the Bad Hair Day mystery series featuring hairstylist and salon owner Marla Shore. There are nine books in the series, beginning with PERMED TO DEATH and ending with KILLER KNOTS due out in December. People love talking about hair and sharing their bad hair day tales, which they do on my website.

  5. Helen Scott Taylor // September 1, 2007 at 11:21 AM  


    You made me laugh. I have a hairdresser come to my home to cut my hair. Maybe I should make sure I always have someone else in the house with me!


  6. Liz Jasper // September 14, 2007 at 2:18 PM  

    Nancy, I can only imagine what it's like for you at the hairdressers. You should stay away from mine--no, hold on. I kinda want to witness something BEYOND my imagination. Next hair cut, I'm steering them to you. Be warned.:)

    Helen, you really get someone to come to you to cut your hair? That's so great! I want that. (Wonder if they make "hairdresser-cams"?) :)