Good Guys & Bad Guys
Are you sure who’s who?
If the writer is not sure who are the good guys and who are the bad guys, then how can the reader be sure? Well, that’s exactly where the fun begins. It’s not just the plot twists that make for a good mystery or suspense novel, it’s also the characters who might surprise us.
Writer and reader explore the possibilities together and we all find out by the end of the story. The writer finds out first and then decides how much to reveal to the reader – when and how. And maybe leaves a few unknowns to ponder after the book is put down. Maybe holds back a few answers for the next book in the series.
It’s important for both intriguing plots and engaging characters for them to be not too obvious or too predictable. Nice guys can sometimes be bad and bad guys may do some good occasionally. It’s a fascinating challenge for writers – to build a logical story and make it interesting and engaging for readers from beginning to end.
In my own crime series of Dale Hunter Novels, I took the protagonist into dangerous situations and dark places, but for many readers he was still too nice a guy – too good to be true. So in later novels I revealed more character flaws and some ugly secrets in Dale Hunter’s past where he was the bad guy. The other primary characters, especially Frank the Fixer and his Mafia friends, appeared to be real bad guys, but turned out to be the heroes who kept Dale alive and out of trouble.
So keep writing the plot twists and character surprises and keep reading to guess how it all works out.
Enjoy your reading and writing,