Okay, so I’ve set up the muder scenario in my occult mystery, Murderous Requiem; I know who did it, I know how they did it, and I think I’ve obscured it enough so that my amateur “detective” doesn’t seem like a complete idiot for not figuring things out immediately.
The murderer probably shouldn’t get away with it. I think we’re all agreed on that point. (Be quiet, Tim!) But how is Jeremy (my main character) going to solve the crime? I’ve been dropping clues, but most of them are meant to send him off in the wrong direction. And at the moment, there’s nothing really pointing to the murderer, other than the fact that said murderer doesn’t really appear capable of killing anyone — always a dead giveaway in a murder mystery.
Then there’s the added problem of Jeremy not knowing that the murder has occurred….
Oh, he knows one murder has occurred. But not the one that’s critical to the plot. The way it’s set up, I’m not sure if he’ll find out about the second murder until the very end. If he did, it might mess up my carefully constructed misdirection. Of course, since this is my first murder mystery, my carefully constructed misdirection might be as transparent as glass to the reader. But I’ll have to worry about that later. For now, ignorance is bliss, and I choose to believe I’m a plotting genius.
Except that I can’t figure out where to go next. I know it can’t be a slip-up on the murderer’s part. That would just be lame and make my detective look like a halfwit for needing the solution handed to him. So a new clue has to turn up somewhere, preferrably connected to the mysterious manuscript the entire story is revolving around, and one that points to the identity of the murderer.
Maybe when Jeremy finishes translating the 14th-century Italian manuscript, it will say, “Verily, the murderer is….”
Oh, dear. We’re back to Jeremy being a halfwit again.