1. Merineliza
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    Merineliza Member

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    Could you help me with this plot part?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Merineliza, Mar 3, 2013.

    I'm writing a mystery novel for children. So, there is this part, where a book is stolen( from a personal library), but its not stolen because its rare. But I can't find any reason for someone to steal a book other than for selling it. So, I was wondering if someone could help me find reasons, for a book to be stolen. Like, I thought that a good reason could be that there was some important document in the book,that could make the antagonist to steal the book. But I realised that , if that was the case, the thief need only take the document and not the whole book.
     
  2. La_Donna
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    La_Donna Member

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    When stealing the document, the antagonist could have been interrupted and may have had to leave in a hurry, so taking the whole book. There would also be some evidence that they left in a hurry then. i.e. knocked over chairs, shelves, books or whatever you feel like.
     
  3. Shannonpeel
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    Shannonpeel Member

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    First question why do they need to steal the book?

    What is it about that book specifically?

    Have you read Inkheart? The Book Theif? I can't think of the other titles right now but there are quite a few young adult books where the protagonist has a connection with a certain book out of all books. Read those you may get some inspiration.
     
  4. Merineliza
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    Merineliza Member

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    Well, actually, you see, the person wants to steal a normal book from his fathers library. He knows that his father has a computer catalogue for library and will find out the book is stolen.But, in order to escape being caught, he stages a theft. He breaks a window pane and takes a rare book(which is like a first edition, so, it costs a lot, but he steals it just to makes others think that the "thief stole it for its value.) along with the "normal" book he wants. He also manages to manipulate his fathers catalogue such that it seems that only one book is stolen. So, my problem is that I need to make this "normal book" important to the son in some way.Did I confuse you? I tend to do that. :)

    So La_Donna, I can't have him hurry out, cause, obviously its his house , he gets all the time to steal. :)

    And Shannonpeel, The reason for stealing the book is what i'm trying to figure out. :) To be honest I haven't decided what the stolen book is about. I was thinking maybe it was just a normal book, but the thief had something important to do with it.

    I haven't read inkheart, but i know what the story is about. I'll try to find info on the Book thief.
     
  5. Shannonpeel
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    Shannonpeel Member

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    Figure out what the book's story is and how come that story is important to the boy. Did his mom read it to him when he was a child? Is it a forbidden book? Is it a favorite of his fathers?

    I would encourage you to read Inkheart and other books like it because they will help you figure out different reasons certain books make a certain connection with a child. It's almost 2 in the morning here so my brain is fried and I can't think of other titles to suggest. Maybe someone else can.
     
  6. idle
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    idle Active Member

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    If it isn't rare, then it should be a personal reason, something that wouldn't be a reason for anyone else. Like Shannonpeel said, maybe it's his favourite from his childhood? Maybe the main character reminds him of someone? But that probably woulndn't explain why he wouldn't get another copy instead. If you were thinking about a document in it, maybe it wasn't an inserted sheet of paper, but notes written in the book itself (some people actually do that, you know).
     
  7. GhostWolfe
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    GhostWolfe Member

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    I'm wondering how you came by the idea of "the character wants to steal a book" without some idea behind why the macguffin is a book, as opposed to a document or artefact or even just his confiscated ball.

    I'm assuming that the theft drives the plot in some way, so how does the book tie in to the rest of the story? Maybe the kid is actually a spy & the book in question is the one used to encode/decode secret messages? What happens after the book is stolen? What came before?
     
  8. Merineliza
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    Merineliza Member

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    Shannonpeel, Yes, personal reason seems a good one. But if it just attachment to the book, then, he can easily ask his father. He has a motive.

    Idle, I love your idea abiut things written in a book. It is a reason to steal it.

    Ghostwolfe, it could have been anything , but I chose a book , because the hero, is a book lover an he'll be easily able to get access to the library and cause he knows a lot about them.But, I love your idea of the antagonist being a spy. He's not a kid, by the way. The hero is a kid. He and his brother and his sister solve the mystery. So, I wanted to decide the crime first before I went to other aspects of a story.
     
  9. Mot
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    Mot Member

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    Stealing a book from a personal library is something a character in The Book Thief actually does, not that it's an original plot device or anything.

    Humans are invariably good at placing values on worthless things. Imagine your house was on fire and you had two minutes to grab something (and imagine too that your family/housemates/pets were already safe)- what would you take? If I was in that situation, I'd take my diaries. They span about seven years and my boyfriend left a note in one of them, hence their 'value' to me.
     
  10. Merineliza
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    Merineliza Member

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    Mot, Yes, I agree. I myself would hardly be able to give my books to anyone. Because they mean a lot. But the problem is, the antagonist require a valid reason to steal it. You see if he had value for the book. Say, it was the book he read first. He could simply ask his father. There was no need for stealing.

    I came up with idea i would love to have everyone's opinion about it. What if there was the will to his father's estate hidden in the book. I'm not saying that it was just kept in the book. It was hidden in the covers, or between the layers of covers. He wants to just take it, but he can't just take it because he needs to practically destroy the book to get it. And anyone would notice a destroyed book. So, he steals it. Does it seem stupid?Or is the idea good?
     
  11. Xatron
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    Xatron Contributing Member

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    What use would the will of his father be to him since his father is still alive? If the will was kept in the book and his father realized that a theft had occurred in the library, the first book he would look for would be that book, and if the will was missing then he would just create a new one validated at a later time than the previous one which would render the stolen one moot.
    Maybe the book is a book his mother wrote and beneath the obvious text she has hidden a coded message for him that only he can read, only his father won't let him anywhere near the book.
     
  12. Merineliza
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    Merineliza Member

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    What i meant was the title document for the estate. Sorry, that I used the word will instead of title document. He wants to steal it to mortgage the estate. His father, has a computer catalogue for his library. He finds out that the stolen book is a rare book and so, he doesn't need to be afraid of his will beaing stolen. They don'y find the the other book as stolen, because the son, manipulates the catalogues to show that only one book is stolen. He could have just stolen one book and then, manipulated the catalogue to show no book had been stolen, but they was another theft system in the father's library that detects if any book is missing. It can only detect if any book is missing, but not the number of books.

    Yes, the coded message is a great idea. But if he has access to the library, wouldn't he automatically have access to the book? unless his father has locked the book up. But it would make the stealing the of rare book useless.
     
  13. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Perhaps there are clues written somewhere in that copy of the book (or so the thief believes). But the clues that the thief used to deduce that the secret is in that book could actually lead somewhere else instead...

    EDIT: Oh, just read your additional entries. Maybe the antagonist believes the document, or a key needed to get to it, is concealed in the binding.
     

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