Monday, November 2, 2015

Where Do These Weird Ideas Come From? Part Three

                                                          Plotting in Reverse

Sorry I’m late with this folks. Had a brain freeze plus a weekend working at a Comic Con for three days selling books and talking to readers and writers.

My last essay on the idea topic comes from something that works well for me but it is a bit off-the-wall.

I write a series of fantasy detective novellas under The Housetrap Chronicles. Seven published so far including two collections.

First I come up with a title, usually a mash-up of a well-known mystery story. My first title I mangled was based on Agatha Christie’s “The Mousetrap.” That is where I came up with “Housetrap.” Once I have the title, I create a plot and write a story that will fit the title and has no bearing on the original title at all. My detective is set in a world of elves and goblins and mongrels and whatever else I throw into the mix. Someday the kitchen sink will make an appearance.

To give you examples of some of the other titles in the series: “Dial M for Mudder,” or “The Hounds of Basalt Ville,” or “Murder in the Rouge Mort,” or “The Treasure of Sarah Madder.”  You get the idea.

I have a lot of fun writing these things and they give me a break from being serious. The only time I ran into a problem, is once after I came up with a plot the normal way and discovered I had a terrible time finding a title to fit.

Anyway, the bottom line is, a writer can find an idea for a story anywhere. Just grab it and run with it!


The Dark Lady Trilogy (Volume 1,2,3)
The Queen’s Pawn (Volume 1)
The Housetrap Chronicles (Volume 1 to 7)
Alex in Wanderland,
Knight’s Bridge

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