Finishing Your First Mystery

Chances are if you’re reading this, you’ve  written a lot of words, some pages, some chapters, which are causing you a lot of pain. It feels like you’ve done a lot of thinking, a lot of typing, but it isn’t a book. You know that. And you’re about to give up.

In the beginning you couldn’t wait to sit down with it. You were in love with your hero and the rest of your characters. It was fun and the words tumbled along as if you were taking dictation.

Now you’ve found it was a lot harder than you thought. Writing a mystery which was once a lark, has turned sour. Your characters have gone flat; the plot has fizzled out; and you haven’t a thought in your head about how to finish it. Or whether it’s even worth it. Or whether you want to work this hard.

Please don’t give up. I want you to continue.Quoting one of my favorite writers, Neil Gaiman:

Creative work is often a slog and the only way you’ll really get good at it is to finish what you start even when it’s not going well. You’ll end up learning from that experience more than if you quit.

There’s a lot of wisdom in that. I am resentful of writers who say they have such fun with their characters. That’s not the way it is with me. It’s work. It’s a slog.

In fact I’m writing a 10,000 word eBook on the subject of finishing your first mystery. Stay tuned. I just sent off my 6th mystery to my editor and it was like leveling Mount Everest with a bent plastic spoon. But it got done and I learned something in the process.

Stay tuned. In the meantime, please check out my recent book, A Very Private High School.  Skewed romance, embezzlement, & murder among the Santa Monica elite & dangerous. 4th in a well-reviewed whodunit series.

Click on the sidebar to the right of the post to take a look.


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