Posted by: nancycurteman | January 16, 2011

How to Tie Your Mystery Writing to Your Personal Passions

Bookmark and Share

Mystery writing is a great vehicle for sharing your personal interests, values and passions. It’s possible to incorporate a murder into any topic you like. Consider cozy novels like Sally Goldenbaum’s quilting mysteries and Mary Daheim’s bed and breakfast mysteries. Another category is professions like Julia Spencer-Fleming’s Rev. Clare Fergusson, Lydia Adamsons cat sitter sleuth, and the Queenie Davilov series featuring a screenwriter/sleuth.

Two of my passions are travel and human rights. Hence the title of my blog: Global Mysteries. My sleuth, Lysi Weston, is a corporate trainer who travels around the world teaching managers how to identify and combat sexual harassment. Everywhere she goes she ends up involved in a murder investigation while experiencing interesting and unusual places and cultures. Of course, I love incorporating my personal travel experiences into my novels.

It’s easy to tie your mystery writing to your personal passions. Here’s how:

• Think about your own personal passions and goals.

• Create a sleuth who will act on your passions and goals.

• Place your sleuth in a profession and setting that will enable h/er to strive for the achievement of those personal goals.

• Now confront her with a murder.

That’s it! Well, almost. Here are three critical cautions:

1.   Keep the solution to the murder as your primary story objective.

2.   Do not preach or sermonize about your passions. Let them flow through the story at a subliminal level.

3.   Keep your personal interests incidental to the excitement and suspense of the mystery puzzle.

There is a mystery loving audience out there who will delight in sharing your personal passions.

Additional mystery writing tips:

Backstory: 10 things a Mystery Writer Should Know
9 Ways to Create Tension in a Mystery Novel
4 Do’s and Don’ts of  ”Show, Don’t Tell.”
How Do Conflict and Crisis Differ in a Mystery Novel?
How Important is Conflict in a Mystery Story?

Advertisements

Responses

  1. Wish I could follow in all of your footsteps but for now reading about them is still great. Thanks. 🙂

    Like

  2. […] Mystery writing is a great vehicle for sharing your personal interests, values and passions. It’s possible to incorporate a murder into any topic you like. Consider cozy novels like Sally Goldenbaum’s quilting mysteries and Mary Daheim’s bed and breakfast mysteries. Another category is professions like Julia Spencer-Fleming’s Rev. Clare Fergusson, Lydia Adamsons cat sitter sleuth, and the Queenie Davilov series featuring a screenwriter/sleuth. Tw … Read More […]

    Like

  3. This is my favorite post you’ve done on mystery writing. Spot on, NC!

    A few more examples: Jessica Fletcher writing mysteries in Maine, while traveling around to promote her work at conferences. A series of books, including Baker’s Dozen, featuring a caterer sleuth.

    How fun!

    Like

  4. Jessica is a good example of tying a personal passion into a mystery novel. Thanks for the reminder.

    Like

  5. Great way to carry a message. Thank you for sharing your expertise.

    I consider my MS to be in the mystery genre, but the victim is not murdered. The kidnappers do not intend to murder the victim. Also, the readers know what is happening to the victim, but the characters do not. Have I perhaps assumed that my story is a mystery when it is not? Blessings to you…

    Like

    • Hello Carol,
      Absolutely your MS is a mystery if there is some kind of puzzle to solve. Not all mysteries are built on a corpse.

      Like

  6. Good storytelling tips and comforting to know I’m on the right track. Corpses are no fun for me but mystery puzzles are intriguing.

    Like


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: