By Beau Simmons Stillwater NewsPress, Okla.
WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Entrepreneur Elizabeth Chaffin says her company "Bearded Rat Mysteries" creates entertainment that is a mix between the game of Clue and roleplaying.
Stillwater NewsPress, Okla.
Elizabeth Chaffin is yet another budding entrepreneur in Stillwater. In the current gig economy, she has found a niche opportunity in the party world. She writes and stages murder mysteries with her new company Bearded Rat Mysteries.
1) How did you get started doing murder mysteries?
It really just started. Last Christmas I wrote a murder mystery for my family to play together because we were all together for the first time in a long time. I thought it would be fun to do and it was cheaper than buying them all presents. So, I wrote us a play and I just thought the whole process was really fun so I thought I'll try to do something with it. I'm also working out of the Work-It coworking center, there's a lot of people starting businesses and doing what they can on the side, so it was inspiring.
2)There's a certain style to it. How did you learn to write these things?
When I was in high school I had a group of friends, we liked to buy the games off the internet and play them together. The first time I wrote one, I was living in China and a friend of mine had a birthday, and we wanted to do that kind of thing for her birthday but we didn't have access to any of the games that we would have had access to in the states, so I just said, 'Don't worry about it. I'll just write it.' That was 2014.
3) How do you explain it to people who have never participated?
I would probably say it's like the game of Clue meets roleplaying. The murder mystery I wrote for TS Fork is a little less involved. It's more a series of clues and certain people will reveal a clue and I have a detective who will ask questions. The other games that I'm currently writing, but I don't have up for sale right now, would be like the games we play at a house party. Those would be a little more involved.
4) How do people book you?
You can go to Bearded Rat Mysteries on Facebook and message for booking availabilities.
5) When's your next open event? The only thing that's open right now would be the next mystery at TS Fork. That's on Jan. 31. For that, you would go to TS Fork's website (tsfork.com) and book a reservation. I've also been approached by the Stillwater Arts Festival about planning an art heist mystery, but that isn't concrete yet.