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A Strange Disappearance by Anna Green

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How to Write a Mystery Novel Like A Strange Disappearance by Anna Katharine Green

A Strange Disappearance by Anna Katharine Green

Introduction

If you love mystery novels, you might have heard of A Strange Disappearance by Anna Katharine Green. It’s a classic story of a missing maid, a mysterious millionaire, and a clever detective who tries to solve the case. Anna Katharine Green was one of the first authors to write detective fiction in America, and she influenced many writers who came after her, such as Agatha Christie and Arthur Conan Doyle. She was known for her well-plotted, legally accurate, and suspenseful stories that kept readers guessing until the end.

But how did she do it? How did she write such engaging and intriguing mystery novels? And more importantly, how can you write one like hers? In this article, we’ll share some tips and tricks on how to write a mystery novel like A Strange Disappearance by Anna Katharine Green. We’ll cover topics such as:

  • How to choose a genre and a setting for your mystery novel
  • How to create a compelling plot with clues, red herrings, and a twist
  • How to develop realistic and memorable characters
  • How to use language and style to create atmosphere and tension
  • How to avoid common pitfalls and mistakes when writing a mystery novel

By the end of this article, you’ll have a better idea of how to write a mystery novel like A Strange Disappearance by Anna Katharine Green. You’ll also learn some interesting facts about her life and work. So let’s get started!

Anna Katharine Green

How to Choose a Genre and a Setting for Your Mystery Novel

The first thing you need to decide when writing a mystery novel is what genre and setting you want to use. There are many types of mystery novels, such as cozy mysteries, hard-boiled mysteries, historical mysteries, paranormal mysteries, and more. Each genre has its own conventions, expectations, and audience. You need to choose a genre that suits your style, interests, and goals.

For example, A Strange Disappearance by Anna Katharine Green is a classic example of a detective mystery. This genre focuses on the investigation of a crime by a professional or amateur detective who uses logic, deduction, and observation to find the culprit. Detective mysteries usually have a realistic and urban setting, such as New York City in A Strange Disappearance. They also have a serious and realistic tone, with some humor and romance sprinkled in.

Some tips on how to choose a genre and a setting for your mystery novel are:

  • Research different genres and subgenres of mystery novels. Read some examples of each genre and see what appeals to you. You can also check out online resources such as Mystery Writers of America or The Mystery Genre for more information.
  • Consider your target audience. Who are you writing for? What kind of stories do they like? What are their expectations and preferences? You want to choose a genre and a setting that will attract and satisfy your readers.
  • Be original and creative. Don’t be afraid to mix and match different genres and settings. You can also create your own genre or subgenre by adding new elements or twists to existing ones. For example, you can write a historical mystery with paranormal elements or a cozy mystery with sci-fi elements.
  • Be consistent and coherent. Whatever genre and setting you choose, make sure they fit together well. Avoid using elements that clash or contradict each other. For example, don’t write a hard-boiled mystery with magical creatures or a historical mystery with futuristic technology.

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How to Create a Compelling Plot with Clues, Red Herrings, and a Twist

The next thing you need to do when writing a mystery novel is to create a compelling plot. A plot is the sequence of events that make up your story. It should have a clear beginning, middle, and end. It should also have conflict, tension, suspense, and resolution.

One of the most important aspects of a plot in a mystery novel is the mystery itself. The mystery is the question or problem that drives the story forward. It usually involves a crime or an enigma that needs to be solved by the detective or the protagonist.

In A Strange Disappearance by Anna Katharine Green, the mystery is the disappearance of Hannah Chester, a young sewing girl who worked for Mr. Holman Blake, an eminent bachelor in New York City. The housekeeper Mrs. Daniels suspects foul play and calls Detective Ebenezer Gryce who investigates the case with his assistant Q.

To create a compelling mystery, you need to use three main elements: clues, red herrings, and a twist.

  • Clues are pieces of information that help the detective or the protagonist solve the mystery. They can be physical, verbal, or behavioral. They can be found at the crime scene, in the suspects’ statements, or in other sources. They should be relevant, logical, and consistent with the solution. They should also be hidden or disguised among other details to make them harder to find.
  • Red herrings are false or misleading clues that distract or mislead the detective or the protagonist from the true solution. They can be intentional or unintentional. They can be planted by the culprit, by other characters, or by the author. They should be plausible, believable, and tempting. They should also be revealed or explained at some point to avoid confusion or frustration.
  • A twist is a sudden and unexpected change in the direction or outcome of the story. It can be a revelation, a reversal, or a surprise. It can involve the identity of the culprit, the motive of the crime, the nature of the mystery, or the fate of the characters. It should be shocking, satisfying, and logical. It should also be foreshadowed or hinted at earlier in the story to make it more credible.

Some tips on how to create a compelling plot with clues, red herrings, and a twist are:

  • Outline your plot before you start writing. Plan your main events, your mystery, your clues, your red herrings, and your twist. This will help you organize your thoughts and avoid plot holes or inconsistencies.
  • Start with a hook. A hook is an opening sentence or paragraph that grabs the reader’s attention and makes them want to read more. It can be a question, a statement, a dialogue, a description, or an action. It should introduce your genre, your setting, your characters, or your mystery. For example, A Strange Disappearance by Anna Katharine Green starts with this hook: “It was by accident I learned it.”
  • End with a bang. A bang is a closing sentence or paragraph that leaves the reader satisfied and impressed. It can be an answer, a resolution, a cliffhanger, a teaser, or a reflection. It should wrap up your plot, your mystery, your clues, your red herrings, and your twist. It should also leave an impression on the reader’s mind and emotions.

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FAQs

  • Q: Who is Anna Katharine Green?
  • A: Anna Katharine Green was an American author who wrote detective fiction in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. She is considered one of the pioneers of the genre and influenced many writers who came after her, such as Agatha Christie and Arthur Conan Doyle.
  • Q: What is A Strange Disappearance about?
  • A: A Strange Disappearance is a mystery novel by Anna Katharine Green that was published in 1880. It tells the story of a missing maid, a mysterious millionaire, and a clever detective who tries to solve the case. It is one of Green’s most popular and acclaimed works.
  • Q: How can I read A Strange Disappearance online?
  • A: You can read A Strange Disappearance online for free on Project Gutenberg, a website that offers thousands of public domain books in various formats. You can also download the book as an ebook or an audiobook from the same website.

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Conclusion

Writing a mystery novel like A Strange Disappearance by Anna Katharine Green is not an easy task. It requires creativity, logic, research, and skill. However, it is also a rewarding and enjoyable experience that can challenge and inspire you as a writer and as a reader.

In this article, we have shared some tips and tricks on how to write a mystery novel like A Strange Disappearance by Anna Katharine Green. We have covered topics such as how to choose a genre and a setting, how to create a compelling plot with clues, red herrings, and a twist, how to develop realistic and memorable characters, and how to use language and style to create atmosphere and tension.

We hope that this article has helped you understand the basics of writing a mystery novel like A Strange Disappearance by Anna Katharine Green. We also hope that it has sparked your interest in reading more books by this amazing author who paved the way for many others in the field of detective fiction.

If you are interested in writing your own mystery novel like A Strange Disappearance by Anna Katharine Green, we have one final tip for you: start writing! There is no better way to learn than by doing. You can use the tips and tricks that we have shared in this article as a guide, but you should also experiment and find your own voice and style.

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