Who, what, where, and action are keys to get your reader into the story from the start. Save narrative description and backstory for later. Now is the time to show your reader you tell a good story.
Deepen your novel, use multiple plotlines. How to develop subplots for your story.
Without an immediate connection with your sleuth, a reader is not motivated to follow them solving the puzzle in the rest of your novel.
How to create a great protagonist, smooth dialogue, keep readers engaged, and trim info-dump to write a novel readers love.
As you build your story alternate between action and reaction. Before you write a scene you need to know the basic structure of the type of scene that comes next in your mystery.
Why Tension? Isn’t A Mystery a Puzzle? A mystery is a story. A good story of any genre needs tension. Tension is what keeps readers reading. Without tension your story can feel episodic with no push for the reader to continue.What is tension in a story? It’s the state of being stretched tight. In a story, tension applies to a character’s mental and emotional state. In order for readers to feel tension, they must care about the character. When a reader empathizes with th […]
Avoid the Sagging Middle in Your Mystery Mystery writers have an advantage over many other genres when it comes to keeping the middle from sagging. Up to the middle the detective has delved into the evidence and suspects in the victim’s worldThe essence of keeping a reader turning pages is heightened tension. Rather than episodic […]
The Detective In The Victim’s World Without A Map As you take your detective and your readers deeper into the story in the first half of Act II, your detective enters a new world, the victim’s world. As he wanders the victim’s world he gathers bits and pieces of information, meets suspects and in their […]
From Murder to Trouble in Your Mystery In the first five chapters you introduce your detective, connect your detective with the murder, and start your detective off with a plan to find the murderer.Your main goal in those beginning chapters is to bring the reader into your story world, get them empathizing with your detective—even […]
From Story Idea to Story Summary Once you create your one-sentence story idea, build out to a summary paragraph to include characters, main story points, and the climax. Expanding your story idea builds your story writing momentum. Years ago Randy Ingermanson proposed a way to summarize your story highlighting the important pivots: three disasters plus […]