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  1. 1. Detective Elements A Fair-Play Mystery
  2. 2. Why? <ul><li>In order for people to want to read a mystery, the author must “play fair.” </li></ul><ul><li>In order for a mystery to be considered fair, it must have certain elements. </li></ul><ul><li>Otherwise, an author might be tempted to CHEAT, and that wouldn’t be fair at all, and NO ONE would want to read it. </li></ul>
  3. 3. #1 <ul><li>The DETECTIVE must be memorable. </li></ul>
  4. 4. #1 <ul><li>Fictional detectives must have characteristics that set them apart from the crowd - something that makes them quirky or better than the others. </li></ul>
  5. 5. #2 <ul><li>The CRIME must be SIGNIFICANT. </li></ul>
  6. 6. #2 <ul><li>The CRIME must be MURDER, BLACKMAIL, or a great THEFT. </li></ul><ul><li>NOBODY cares who stole the cookies from the cookie jar… </li></ul><ul><li>It must be worth the detective’s (AND the reader’s!) time. </li></ul>
  7. 7. #3 <ul><li>The CRIMINAL must be a WORTHY OPPONENT. </li></ul>
  8. 8. #3 <ul><li>Fictional detectives need to SHOW OFF their skills! </li></ul><ul><li>In order to do this, they need a clever adversary, someone with whom to match wits, an intellectual equal. </li></ul><ul><li>They engage in a battle of intellects that the readers can also enjoy. </li></ul>
  9. 9. #4 <ul><li>ALL SUSPECTS - including the criminal - MUST be introduced early in the story. </li></ul>
  10. 10. #4 <ul><li>Half the fun of reading a good detective story comes from the mental contest between the reader and the detective in a race to solve the crime. </li></ul><ul><li>The perpetrator of the crime must be one of the main characters in the story. </li></ul>
  11. 11. #5 <ul><li>All CLUES discovered by the detective MUST be made available to the reader. </li></ul>
  12. 12. #5 <ul><li>FAIR PLAY </li></ul><ul><li>The reader must be given the same opportunity as the detective to solve the crime. </li></ul><ul><li>Of course, RED HERRINGS are allowed, as long as the detective is similarly deceived. </li></ul>
  13. 13. #6 <ul><li>The SOLUTION must be logical and obvious when the detective reveals how he solved the crime. </li></ul>
  14. 14. #6 <ul><li>In the end, the reader must see how all the little tidbits of information fit together like so many pieces of a jigsaw puzzle. It is for this reason that detective stories are so appealing. </li></ul>
  15. 15. The ELEMENTS <ul><li>The detective must be memorable . </li></ul><ul><li>The crime must be significant . </li></ul><ul><li>The criminal must be worthy . </li></ul><ul><li>All suspects must be available . </li></ul><ul><li>All clues must be available . </li></ul><ul><li>The ending must be logical . </li></ul>