1. Charisma
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    Charisma Transposon Contributor

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    The Long Way Home?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Charisma, Jul 31, 2014.

    So, I am working on a mystery novel these days and could use some advice.

    I know it might not be the best strategy, but I do not write down my plot or map it all out before writing the novel. I know the general direction I am headed in, and have figured out most of the pertinent plot points, but I let little surprises pop up along the way, especially for the details. That way, the novel never becomes 'old' for me; it's a discovery as I write it, not knowing exactly what's about to happen.

    In summation, I do not have all the nitty gritty figured out.

    Now, the question I have is that currently, the police are trying to solve a serial murder, and they're sifting through leads and whatnot. Of course, they're at a deadend when finally, a useful lead turns up. In my current draft, the useful lead turns up in the second chapter. I know this is hard to comment on, but still, do you think that's too soon? Should I develop the characters more and let them wander before they get that lead? Or should I pen this down as is, and come back to it later?

    Thanks a bunch, folks.
     
  2. Selbbin
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    Selbbin I hate you Contributor

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    Smash out the first draft and fix up all the logic problems after. At least, that's what I would do. You don't need all the 'nitty gritty' locked away tight until later.

    It's about right for a useful lead. It depends on the suspense you're trying to build. Often the main clue is given early because the chase is the story. Other times it waits until the end.
     
  3. Charisma
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    Charisma Transposon Contributor

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    Well, it's really the start of a chain of revelations, so yeah, without it the story can't actually "start". But I was wondering if I want it to get right into action in the second chapter; I mean, is it better to give the reader a better glimpse of all the characters beforehand, or let that happen alongside the action?
     
  4. Selbbin
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    Selbbin I hate you Contributor

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    Alongside. It's always more interesting to learn information while there is action than it is to separate it and wade through details before anything happens. As the saying goes; 'cut to the chase'.
     
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  5. Charisma
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    Charisma Transposon Contributor

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    Okay, thanks for your input. Now I have rid myself of another excuse for procrastination :D
     
  6. Nightstar99
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    Nightstar99 Contributing Member

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    I'm firmly in the write it and see what happens camp. As long as you know roughly the start middle and end in your head then just go for it. I'm always amazed at how things fill in on the way, but on the whole most of my stuff broadly ends up following the arc I imagined.
     

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