The First Two Pages: “Horse Feathers” by Jeff Cohen

In April 2015, B.K. Stevens debuted the blog series “The First Two Pages,” hosting craft essays by short story writers and novelists analyzing the openings of their own work. The series continued until just after her death in August 2017, and the full archive of those essays can be found at Bonnie’s website. In November 2017, the blog series relocated to my website, and the archive of this second stage of the series can be found here.

The new anthology Monkey Business: Crime Fiction Inspired by the Films of the Marx Brothers, edited by Josh Pachter and published by Untreed Reads, has now been unleashed on the world! Expect both mirth and mayhem in equal measure—but what else would you expect from the Marx Brothers, right? —or from contributors including Donna Andrews, Frankie Y. Bailey, Jeff Cohen, Lesley A. Diehl, Brendan DuBois, Terence Faherty, Barb Goffman, Joseph Goodrich, Robert Lopresti, Sandra Murphy, Robert J. Randisi, Marilyn Todd, Joseph S. Walker, and Pachter himself.

Writing humor requires a particular set of talents and a demanding level of skill, and today’s essayist, Jeff Cohen, is a master of the form. Under his own name and as E.J. Copperman, he’s written several series, including the Jersey Girl Legal Mystery series, the Haunted Guesthouse series, the Asperger’s Mystery series, and more. His latest book, Judgment at Santa Monica from the Jersey Girl Legal Mystery Series, has an official pub date of October 5, but is already available now. You can find more information on the author and his books at several websites—, or—and be sure to follow him on Twitter at and

Below, Jeff talks about his story “Horse Feathers” for Monkey Business. You can also check out last week’s essay by Robert J. Randisi on “Go West,” and look forward to next week’s guest, Frankie Y. Bailey too!

Please use the arrows and controls at the bottom of the embedded PDF to navigate through the essay. You can also download the essay to read off-line.


1 thoughts on “The First Two Pages: “Horse Feathers” by Jeff Cohen

  1. Pingback: The First Two Pages: “Love Happy” by Frankie Y. Bailey – Art Taylor

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