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Tips anyone?


Jun-25-2007 11:10

I'm writing a mystery. I have the basics of it, and now I'm putting everything together. This is my first so is there any tips out there you can give me?



Sleuth Admin
Sleuth Admin
Tale Spinner

Jun-25-2007 12:58

If you are stuck for an idea, try playing through what you have so far, and see where it leads you.

Also, be sure to include at least one story branch where a series of steps leads to a dead end. Some of the mysteries we get are very linear, and these are supposed to be mysteries after all.


Jun-25-2007 13:34

Try to make charecters out of people you know or even people you have seen.

Safety Officer

Jun-25-2007 17:31

Mmm Ben makes a good point, having read a few FM's now in their infancy, there aren't many that have a 'false' path or two. Linear is nice and safe and easy, but note, 'easy' isn't always 'good'.

Also I'd just go for all the basic things:

A spell check. Honestly, I don't get much further than the first few para's of the intro if there's four or five obvious lazy typos. (Yes I know me and all my Beckyisms too).

I think it's fair to say more than 4 suspects. The basic 'easy' is 5/6 so an SM should extend at least extend to that.

I don't know what other SM editors do? That's just me.

Old Shoe

Jun-25-2007 18:09

For me, I do a few things before I'll even take on the job of editing your FM.

First, as SS said, if you have any more than five spelling mistakes in the first two paragraphs of your introduction, red flags go up.

Second, if your introduction (or crime scene, for that matter) is so short that there is no scroll bar for me to continue reading, they're too short. Way too short.

Third, if you have under 4-5 suspects, you're in trouble.

Fourth, if none of your names are capitalized, nor are their relations to the victim, we're going to have some serious issues.

Fifth, if the description of your mystery is something like "So and so died, you have to find out who did it," then there really isn't much of a definitive plot, and we're going to be in serious trouble.

I could keep going, but I think you get the idea, and these are just a few of the common things I see that make me want to pull my hair out.

Ben's comment: It's true. Many of them don't have more than 1-2 dead ends... Perhaps I'll have to write another after this new one comes out and fulfill on that.


Jun-26-2007 09:29

I know that I capitalized the names, everytime expt one that I found, I have 7 suspects, I have a few twists, that, one kills a suspect, Two of them kept suspets from being talked to, I also have 2 reserch, one needs the reserch skill, the other dosen't, cause you need it. I think I have a few problems in it.


Jul-5-2007 12:50

I've got a tip for myself! Lol and others, read other FMs and SMs to get an idea, remember these have been acepted so they could help.

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