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Subcategory quips

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So I know my book is a mystery because you have to try to figure out who did it--an agent told me that.  It isn't a thriller mystery because while it's fast paced, the action takes place in one locale with mostly local forces...

If the protagonist is not a cop, but a regular citizen who becomes an FBI mole, how do I categorize it?  It's not really "Amateur Sleuth." I'm so confused.  The FBI operatives are integral to the solving of the mystery, forensic and psychological FBI techniques are utilized to solve the crime.  They never would have been able to solve it without help from and the past life experience of this what exactly would the subcategory be? 

It's not police procedural, I know that. 

Thanks for any insights! 


Old Bill:
Lucie...a quick run through the Google mill seems to favor mystery/suspense genre for your type of story.  (That's mystery/suspense not mystery or suspense as those two genre seemed to have melded together over time).

For my two cents, I think going too far down the subcat slide will pidgeon hole your story.

Good luck.

Old Bill

PS...Thillers can't be in one locale??

B L McAllister:
Thrillers like "The Pit and the Pendulum" can be in one locale. So, of course, can others.


Re your comment below:

--- Quote from: wonderactivist on August 12, 2010, 01:35:45 PM ---It's not police procedural, I know that. 

--- End quote ---

Actually, from your description, that's exactly what it is.

A police procedural is nothing more than a novel in which the profession of law enforcement is described with accuracy (or at least with the appearanceof accuracy).

The FBI does use "moles" who are not sworn agents or investigative employees. 

Police work is what solves the crime. 

It's about the "world" of law enforcement.

So it's a police procedural.

Didn't know as much as you thought you did, did you?

Old Bill:
Hey Lucie and Jim,

I for one have always hated the term 'police procedural'.  It sounds so Criminology 101-ish.  I suspect readers interested in mystery/suspense or 'pp' might buy either genre.  Besides, as I've stated before somewhere, if your story follows actual police procedure it's going to be boring.  Many stories have one cop, or maybe a partner team, doing all the work whereas in reality, unlike CSI (Ugh! :P) many people are involved...even teams of people...all the way from the street cop to the judiciary.  Give me a good suspense story that cheats over some of the procedures any day.  Isn't that why they call it fiction?

Okay, I know...enough ranting.

Old Bill

BTW:  Do you know how many burglaries we would investigate and collect evidence on by the same perp only to have the detectives pop a confession on the one with little or no good evidence?  And then usually the D.A. would prosecute on one lousy count.  Yeah...that was fun.


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