WIR #31: You Can Write a Mystery

You Can Write a MysteryThis is the last of my most recent batch of library books. I'm eager to get these out of the way.

Roberts, unlike Hayden, starts her book off on a positive note. Take a look at the first two paragraphs in her Introduction, in fact:

A prevalent myth has it that the ability to write is innate, almost genetic — like freckles or a predisposition to diabetes. You either have it or you don't, and too bad for you if you don't. This isn't said of the other arts. One seldom hears that people are born opera singers, ballerinas, sculptors, or pianists and therefore voice and music conservatories, ballet masters and art institutes are foolish indulgences.

The truth is, all disciplines have a craft component, skills that enable artists to realize their vision. This includes the art of writing mysteries.

And fantasies and science fiction, too. Writing is a craft that can be learned. (In fact, James A. Ritchie, professional writer and edtior, wrote a blog post on this very subject.)

When Roberts starts her book on writing mysteries on this note, I think I can be sure that I'll enjoy reading this book far more than the last. (This is also a fairly short book — 121 pages — so I should be able to finish this in short order.)

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