Write a Novel with Me – Update
I am posting so that you know I am still here. I have been struggling with balancing work and writing, again. I have to confess that I have also been struggling with this step – developing the innocent suspects.
I have decided that maybe I chose my villain a little prematurely. And because, though I want to share the experience of writing this novel, I may not want to share all of the details because when this master of the mystery genre is completed, I want all of my followers to run to the bookstore and buy it.
I am still in the middle of this step but I do want to share what I have been doing. I have also been reading a few how to write books, like Phyllis A. Whitney’s ‘Guide to Fiction Writing’ as well as ‘Bang the Keys’ by Jill Dearman. One thing I have decided to do is use a book journal. I am writing down all of my ideas as I go so that I don’t lose them. That was an idea I picked up from ‘Guide to Fiction’. I don’t normally journal but I rather liked this idea.
As far as the innocent suspects, my character Ben, the English professor is now one of those suspects instead of my villain. I think I’ve come up with a much more interesting villain. Someone the reader can really fear. I’ve also discovered that for me to continue developing characters, I had to develop more of my story and that is what has been taking me so long. It feels like a puzzle that is missing a few pieces and it is driving me crazy. So I had to step back for a day or two to let it all settle. While I wasn’t obsessing about it, an exceptional idea came to me.
Because this is a mystery, that part I can’t share but I can share the process I used to come up with it. I needed a villain who had a grudge against my protagonist, so I devised different scenarios. Maybe the protagonist was involved with a group of friends who accidentally killed someone after drinking, maybe when the protagonist was a teenager, she was babysitting a child who was kidnapped and later murdered, or at least a bloody garment was found indicating a murder. Maybe the protagonist was kidnapped along with another child, she escaped but the other child was murdered. Those are a few ideas that I came up with while I played the what if game.
Feel free to share some of your ideas with me but don’t tell me what you actually chose to use for your story because I want to be surprised when I read your published story too.
I plan to post again, this weekend after I have more thoroughly developed the other innocent suspects. Just know that one of those suspects is the real murderer.
I do look forward to hearing from you. Let me know what is working for you and maybe what isn’t, maybe I can make some suggestions to help you.
In the meantime, keep writing.