Mystery Thriller Week Book Review: The Weekend Novelist Writes a Mystery by Robert J. Ray

The Weekend Novelist Writes a MysteryThe Weekend Novelist Writes a Mystery by Robert J. Ray

  • Print Length: 271 pages
  • Publisher: Dell (August 10, 2011)
  • Publication Date: August 10, 2011
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English



My Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

My Review:


I was quite happy when I read what exactly this book was about. At first, I thought it was a drama with an unusual title like the armchair tourist. But when I looked closer and realized it was a tool to help me with the dream of writing a mystery, I was stoked. I decided I wanted this book to read and study. I was too impatient to read it over 52 weeks, so I read it in just a few days. Highlighting it an making it a reference guide that would stay with me and each week, I can pick it up again and take a look at the exercises, the tips and the really intense instruction that is in this book.

The fact that the author puts so much emphasis on the rewriting it allows me to study the point by point process of the rewrite. Making it a little less scary and more manageable with step by step assistance. Covering topics I had never contemplated like story cards and scene cards closing the subplots along with the main conclusion of the story. Everything that he talks about is something I can see myself struggling over. The little details that hinder me from writing a mystery. This book makes me feel more comfortable venturing out into this before now fearful genre.

I have to stop here and say that there is humor in this book, the plot that Robert Ray develops has humorous aspects to it that appealed to me. It was not a dry textbook or a dull workbook, it was a simple cleverly written mystery meant to make you feel comfortable.

As a writer, you should pick this up and have it close as you face a mystery for the first time. Or maybe for the first serious time. You will be glad you chose this book. It has a comfortable feel even as it was a little odd about that thong that kept cropping up. But even as there were silly accessories and creepy reasons for them, there was learning.

I was learning things I did not know before. I learned about an authorial intrusion. I have probably intruded with one since I did not know it was an action that the author sometimes takes. I was learning how the mystery is built layer by layer through the book. Not just from the start, but through the entire rewriting process. It was good to learn and even better to have in my personal library in easy reach. If you are an aspiring mystery writer this is one investment that will pay for itself over and over. The knowledge inside is invaluable.
I am posting this review during Mystery Thriller Week. The annual event to celebrate mystery and thriller authors, bloggers, and fans.


Where to Find: The Weekend Novelist Writes a Mystery:

This teaching guide is available in paperback and on Kindle by clicking the links below.

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