1. writing4me
    Offline

    writing4me Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2009
    Messages:
    41
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Ireland

    Please read and comment????

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by writing4me, Mar 26, 2009.

    Hi everybody,
    I have recently started working on a new novel, but I really need help.

    This is the idea I have for the plot:

    a serial killer is loose in ireland. each victim is killed in a different way making it hard for gardai to piece the crimes together. stephanie, a 19 year old girl, starts college to study Psychology. as she starts to hear about the killings she becomes interested by it, which is a bad mistake. little does she know the killer is a friend from her past. and that she could be the one that he's been wanting to kill along.

    I would like to write from either Stephanie or the Killer's POV, and I'm having a hard time deciding.

    I also don't want this to be a typical crime novel, where it's from the POV of a detective, if that's makes sense.

    Any Suggestions....
     
  2. Cogito
    Offline

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    35,935
    Likes Received:
    2,043
    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    A story concept means nothing. I can tell you now, it has been done before. What matters is how you write it, the characterization, the flow, the imagery, all of it.

    There's no point to asking what other people think of the concept! They'll either say,"Sounds great," or, "it sounds like a ripoff of..."

    If the idea stirs you, write it. Then ask people what they think of the final story. After they tell you what they don't like about it, revise it, usually several times, until you're happy with it or until you throw up your hands and say the hell with it.

    Please read this thread about What is Plot Creation and Development?

    (and yes, this is a template post, which should give you an idea of how often this comes up.)
     
  3. bluejt2000
    Offline

    bluejt2000 Member

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2007
    Messages:
    58
    Likes Received:
    4
    I'd suggest you use Stephanie as your VP character. From your summary it sounds as if she's the protagonist, and it's common to write from his or her VP.

    If you write from a certain character's VP then it isn't fair on the reader to hold back his or her thoughts when they are relevant to the plot. In this case the killer knows he's a friend from the protagonist's past, so if you write from his VP you'd have trouble witholding this information, and might loose some major suspense.

    You can, of course, use both VPs (or more, if you wish), with Stephanie's being the major one. The scenes told from the killer's VP would be shorter and fewer, and you'd get away with witholding the above information.

    This can be a good way to build suspense as you can show the killer preparing to strike at his next victim, for example, or even closing in to kill Stephanie towards the end, while she is desperately trying to uncover his identity.

    Hope this helps,

    John
     
  4. Castlesofsand
    Offline

    Castlesofsand Banned

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2009
    Messages:
    1,279
    Likes Received:
    9
    Location:
    Canada
    its strange, to me you should do a bit of both, not an easy thing to do but giving two sides of thought to the murders. have her in either first person and the other in 3rd possibly, that way you can express both their minds. I don't think you should choose, make them both strong.
     
  5. lynneandlynn
    Offline

    lynneandlynn Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2009
    Messages:
    746
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Asheville, NC
    I actually haven't read many crime novels written from the p.o.v. of a detective. I think that it would be more interesting to do it from the killer's p.o.v. because it's less done in general fiction (published works) although I think it could be hard to really get into the mindset of a killer because a lot of us aren't really dark enough to be able to pull that sort of writing off well. Now, mind you, that doesn't mean *none* of us are capable of doing so, just that it can be difficult.

    Or, if you really want, you could write the novel from both perspectives by switching p.o.v's every chapter--I'd suggest if you do this, however, to make sure you avoid rewriting the same story over and over again. Just let the plot move forward on its own without re-visiting past events already told in the story.

    ~Lynn
     
  6. architectus
    Offline

    architectus Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2008
    Messages:
    1,796
    Likes Received:
    14
    Location:
    Ca
    If Dean Koontz were to write this story, he would write from both points of view. He would mostly write from her POV, though. This could actually create more suspense because we know the killer wants her dead, but she has no clue.

    It's like when you watch a horror movie, and you know the killer is outside the house watching through the window. That creates high suspense when we watch the girl prance around the house. We know her life is in danger, but she has no clue.
     
  7. writing4me
    Offline

    writing4me Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2009
    Messages:
    41
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Ireland
    Thanks for all the suggestions... I've actually decided to let this idea sit as is right now, as I'm working on a number of short stories at the moment. Having read your comments I think I might write it from both the killer and Stephanie's POV, but also a distant POV from the police that are investigating the crimes itself. Thanks again...

    CJ
     
  8. bullets4booze
    Offline

    bullets4booze Member

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2009
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Miami
    To me it sounds like the plot of generic popcorn thriller.

    A 19 year old girl named Stephanie venturing into a crime plot is uncool. :( But plot unfolded, who knows.. you might have a good story. I suggest you add some "edge" to it. Definitely write your story from the Killer's POV. And to disagree with a post above, DO NOT write what's common. This story already seems too common I think you need to make it unconventional to make it interesting. I'd get rid of the "student" factor.. perhaps you can make Stephanie a detective's apprentice and she's trying to gain a foothold by catching the criminal. And maybe the criminal is actually her idol detective. Sorry for the bundle of detail lol.
     
  9. lynneandlynn
    Offline

    lynneandlynn Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2009
    Messages:
    746
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Asheville, NC
    bullets4booze, I have to ask why every time I see a post from you you are telling people that their idea is unoriginal... All ideas are unoriginal. But if it's original to you (i.e. you've never read it yourself and want to write it) then it's still original. And even something the majority of people consider overdone can be done again if it's done *well.*

    To the OP, I'd consider just using two p.o.v.'s.. bring in three can make it very awkward and hard to balance.
     
  10. madhoca
    Offline

    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2008
    Messages:
    2,527
    Likes Received:
    88
    Location:
    the shadow of the velvet fortress
    I think Steph's age and specialisation would make her an interesting POV, but I think it would add to the plot to have a few scenes in the killer's POV coming in from time to time. Does Steph know any of the victims? Maybe that could also be what got her interested in the killings.
     
  11. bullets4booze
    Offline

    bullets4booze Member

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2009
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Miami
    Not all my posts were "unoriginal" remarks. I did praise some stories that I think have potential. I'm just telling the truth.
     
  12. Bowie
    Offline

    Bowie New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2009
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    I had a thought. It's such the cliché for the protagonist/narrator/detective to turn out to be the serial killer, but it would be interesting to do the reverse: for the protagonist, whom apparently *is* the serial killer, to turn out to be innocent all along, and only imagined the killings or her narration could be worded in such a clever way as to obscure any actual admission of guilt... or -- perhaps speaking as though in conscious admission of guilt -- at the very end to turn out to be covering for her sister or someone else close to her.

    Has this been done before? I might try it if not :p
     
  13. Cogito
    Offline

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    35,935
    Likes Received:
    2,043
    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    It ALL has been done before. If you jump through hoops to make a story different from anything else, all you will succeed in doing is making it look like a rickety shack.

    Concentrate instead on writing the story well. If you do that, you may keep the reader guessing just which trope you are casting your story into.

    [rant]The use of the word cliche to describe a plot summary labels the person who uses it. A cliche, properly speaking, is a phrase or metaphor that has been so overused to have all but lost its meaning. Using it to describe a group of story elements is, quite frankly, sloppy thinking.

    A frequently seen storyone may be labelled a classic theme with equal or greater accuracy.[/rant]
    .
     
  14. Henry The Purple
    Offline

    Henry The Purple Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2009
    Messages:
    319
    Likes Received:
    1
    True brilliance comes as you are writing. Its like a river flowing. Concepts and ideas are only the beginning of a very long journey...
     
  15. Neidermeyer
    Offline

    Neidermeyer Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2007
    Messages:
    148
    Likes Received:
    12
    Location:
    Indiana
    I would agree to write it from her POV mainly, but if you can introduce the killer's POV without giving away the identity, that would be cool.
     

Share This Page