Table of Contents
＋ Add to Library
- Avoid dull and prosy description. If any type of story depends on action and
- excitement, it is the type we are discussing. Keep before you always the
- question of your reader's attitude towards your work. Arrest their attention,
- rouse their curiosity, awake their interest, and you have made your start.
- Continue to stimulate all these to the highest pitch, and your story is
- written. Let your final explanation more than satisfy their anticipation, and
- you have made a success.
- Build everything toward the final climax, using minor surprises as stepping-
- stones by the way. Continually produce the unexpected Persistently lead the
- reader to believe one thing and then suddenly convince him that he ought to
- have known it was another! Use every art and craft that in you lies to mislead
- him, but in such a way that when he is turned back to the right path he will
- vow he misled himself.
- Remember the two great principles: to have your facts as straight and true as
- a mathematical proposition; and to have your fancies as fascinating and
- elusive as a fairy tale. In a word, the ideal writer of detective fiction
- should be the child of Euclid and Scheherazade.