Friday, June 26, 2009

The Difficulties of the Genre Novel

Naturally you want your crime fiction novel to be exciting. The use of pacing is giving me fits right now.

I have been humming along alternating action and excitement with moving the plot along. There is a budding romance, a road trip, trying to escape from the bad guy, and setting up the story for the next scenes.

Just wrapped up some drama in Jacksonville, FL, and now the characters need to be sitting in the CVS parking lot in a Boston suburb. I don’t want to describe the rest of the trip in any detail, (alas, it's not a Road Novel), but need to tell the reader, notice I said tell, not show, that my trio stopped in Myrtle Beach and that the romantic relationship has now expanded to include sex. That the little girl has got one of her heart’s desires, that the motor home has broken down causing a day’s delay. That a short day's drive has expanded due to a nightmare mess on I-95 in Connecticut, a not uncommon event, making the characters almost late to get to the bank before it closes to get the account number for the Cayman Islands bank where huge gobs of illegal drug money is stashed. Remember this is a crime story. Suspense!

Now the characters have to get to Chicago on the double, but hurry to get to the bank has created a huge PLOT Point.

Man, this writing business is hard work.

So I think what I’m going to do is set the van down in the middle of the traffic jam and let the characters sweat a little and tell us about Myrtle Beach, and the prior two days in a few short paragraphs. Then the race to the bank. All hell breaks loose. Of course the way they’ve been robbing banks in suburban Boston, I could even have a bank robbery. Hey, that’s a good idea. A man with a gun comes through the door. Yowsa! Oh boy! Yes!

Grapeshot, who is closing in on 220 pages and lots of words.

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