Seeking to improve my skills, I ordered a copy of How to Write a Mystery, edited by Lee Child. At first glance, anyone who enjoys a whodunit would get a little excited. Some 70 authors were invited by the Mystery Writers of America to contribute, and I was eager to absorb their wisdom.
A few reasons for my interest. First, my ongoing Call of Cthulhu game. Surely developmental ideas from fellow authors could transition to the TTRPG scene quite nicely. Second, mystery knows no real bounds. The Robots of Dawn by Isaac Asimov is an example of a sci-fi mystery, while the entire Harry Potter series is such in the trappings of magical fantasy. Even the super hero genre benefits. Batman: The Long Halloween is an excellent tale, a puzzling series of murders still discussed and analyzed today.
Coming from some professional experience, I envisioned trying a few new methodologies or perhaps adding a fresh frame of mind to the tacklebox. Unfortunately, How to Write a Mystery wasn’t exactly what I sought.Continue reading