Mystery Writers Forum

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
collapse collapse
* Search

* User Info
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

* Who's Online
  • Dot Guests: 5
  • Dot Hidden: 0
  • Dot Users: 1
  • Dot Users Online:

Pages: [1]   Go Down

Author Topic: A Twist in the Tale  (Read 1500 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.


  • Scribbler
  • **
  • Karma: 11
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 53
A Twist in the Tale
« on: January 08, 2008, 07:13:26 AM »

Though I am a professional writer of non-fiction, I am fairly new to mystery writing. I am writing a short story which has a twist in the tale. About three pages in I suddenly discovered that I could introduce yet another twist that would stand the original twist on its head. Now, nearing the end of the story, I find I can introduce a third twist that is completely logical and yet would be a total surprise.

My question is: how many twists do you think I can introduce at the end of a story before the reader tires of them?


  • Wordsmith
  • *****
  • Karma: 35
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 6,501
    • The Official IJ Parker site
Re: A Twist in the Tale
« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2008, 10:04:50 AM »

Not sure how long your story is, but I would go for it.  Readers like twists so long as you can keep them involved in between.


  • Ink-Stained Wretch
  • *****
  • Karma: 27
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1,391
Re: A Twist in the Tale
« Reply #2 on: January 09, 2008, 11:17:23 AM »

I agree: Go for the twists. Readers love to be turned upside down if it's logical.



  • Expositor
  • *****
  • Karma: 12
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 535
Re: A Twist in the Tale
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2008, 09:06:05 PM »

Mystery readers are a notoriously twisted bunch -- keep it up!
"I refuse to have a duel of wits with an unarmed person."


  • Cub
  • *
  • Karma: 4
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 16
    • Ricky's website
Re: A Twist in the Tale
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2008, 06:56:05 AM »

The most important thing to consider with each new twist is, does it seem plausible and believable based on what has allready taken place in the plot? Would a reader be able to say, "Damn, I should have seen that coming!" or exclaim, "Wow! I never would have thought that would happen." However, if they read it and frown, closing the book because you've lost them at that point in time, then the twist doesn't work.

In a mystery, unexpected twists and turns are the norm, not the exception, but they have to work each and every time.

I have requested this comment be deleted.

  • BannedUsers
  • Hack
  • ***
  • Karma: 26
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 135
Re: A Twist in the Tale
« Reply #5 on: January 16, 2008, 11:41:19 AM »

Every scene--every beat if possible--should contain some form of reversal, though not necessarily a twist.

The twist ending or major plot twist seems to be a device that entertains some people, but I've about given up on trying to write them.  I just think you either like that kind of thing or you don't.  If I really liked plot twists, I would have read a lot more of them.  It's more constructive to survey what you do know and try to see how that relates to mystery.

If you enjoy reading and writing plot twists, I don't see why you should limit yourself to two.
Pages: [1]   Go Up

* Calendar
September 2019
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 [21]
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30

No calendar events were found.

Paying the bills...

* Forum Staff
admin Bob Mueller
admin MWF Bot
gmod MysteryAdmin
Global Moderator
gmod laurihart
Global Moderator

Page created in 0.095 seconds with 45 queries.

SimplePortal 2.3.3 © 2008-2010, SimplePortal