I wish I had not waited so long to finally decide to become a mystery author. I knew I had a talent for writing when I was in high school, but I never thought of it as a real job. I know better now.
Writing is hard, it makes demands of your soul. But to deny the story within is much harder. Writing is not something to undertake if you want to make a lot of money in a short space of time. It can take years for an author to establish him or herself as a serious writer. It can take years to establish an audience for your work.
What books do I write?
My first books were in the non fiction category, in the genre of natural health.
Because they are a different type of book, and because they’re written under another name, I’m not including them here. I want to keep my two identities separate 😉
My first venture into fiction writing is a series of four short novels in the crime, mystery genre. Why mystery? Because it’s always fascinated me. That’s what I like to read, so that’s what I like to write. So the first book, Death in December actually took five years to write. The second, Blood of the Cult, took four months. This one has a hint of romance and was my favorite to write.
Dead or Alive and Deadly Sin followed soon after. These are the four novels that are included in the mystery set. This set is also now available in printed form.
How to write mystery?
Mystery novels are unique in that they have to be written ‘back to front’. Authors need to know how the book ends, so they can insert all the ‘plot hooks’ and ‘red herrings’ that are necessary to make the story work. I usually write the last scene first and then go back and create the first scene.
The type of book I write is typically called a ‘whodunit’. Hopefully the reader will not guess the identity of the antagonist until the last few pages. This is not always easy to do!
Do I use real crime stories for my ideas? Not consciously anyway. Usually an idea just pops into my head, usually at an inconvenient time like 3 am in the morning.
Do I publish all my work?
Heck no. Not all my ideas will make it to publication. Some are simply too thin, others are too boring. I have to enjoy writing a story, otherwise – what’s the point.
If I write a boring story, chances are readers will find it boring too. The primary sin of writing is to be boring!
I don’t base my characters on real life people. My characters may have some personality traits that match people I know, but usually they come straight from my imagination.
Is it necessary to have a murder in a mystery novel? No, not really, although most of mine have at least one body. Murder, after all, is the ultimate crime. However they can be about kidnapping, theft or any other crime.
What a good mystery novel needs to have is a real, likable hero or heroine. They don’t have to be perfect; perfect is boring. The hero should have his or her good and bad points, but they can’t be wimpy or weak. The reader has to care about the hero or heroine, otherwise the story will fall flat.
The hero also needs to go through a series of challenges. This will make them grow and change. They will be a different person by the end of the book.
I intend to spend the rest of my life writing. It’s who I am – and what I do best.
Since you found my site, I’d like to offer you a free gift. Would you like to have the entire set of these four books for free? Just pop your email and your name if you want, on the form over there on the top right of this page, and you’ll be sent to the download page.