Month: May 2011

Can Series Characters Get in the Way?

In An Appointment With Death, Hercule Poirot is on vacation in Jordan. He is called into a case involving the death of a woman in the historic city of Petra. This sounds pretty straightforward, doesn’t it? Christie’s sleuth on the case. Unfortunately, in the… Continue Reading “Can Series Characters Get in the Way?”

Consistency of Physical Description

I have trouble keeping track of the various eye colors of my characters through one book. In my last completed draft of a book, I caught at least three variations of eye color of my main character’s eyes. Apparently I just couldn’t decide. So,… Continue Reading “Consistency of Physical Description”

Thursday Reviews: The Murder of Roger Ackroyd (A Mentor Review!)

The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie My rating: 4 of 5 stars This book is difficult to talk about without giving away the end. So I’ll just say that, as with Murder on the Orient Express I had a moment a little… Continue Reading “Thursday Reviews: The Murder of Roger Ackroyd (A Mentor Review!)”

Characters Who Don’t Make It Through The Series

In both of Christie’s series – Hercule Poirot and Miss Jane Marple – the opening books are narrated by characters who fall away fairly quickly in the series, never to be heard from in the same way again: John Hastings as Poirot’s bumbling sidekick… Continue Reading “Characters Who Don’t Make It Through The Series”

Meditating on What Makes Poirot a Good Series Character

In her career, Agatha Christie came up with, not one, but two iconic characters: Hercule Poirot and Miss Jane Marple. Today we’ll look at Poirot, seeing why he’s a good focal point for a mystery series. “In her Autobiography Christie gives a detailed account… Continue Reading “Meditating on What Makes Poirot a Good Series Character”

How Fast the Machine Can Get Out of Hand

On Wednesday we talked about how writers are subject to the language of their day. This brought to mind a recent bout of my own with the rhetoric machine – specifically the quotation portion of the machine. As you surely know, a couple weeks… Continue Reading “How Fast the Machine Can Get Out of Hand”

Thursday Reviews: My Second Grade Notebook

Over at Girdle of Melian, Deniz posted a goal for this month: Look over your old writing. Which was one of those crazy synchronous moments for me because, lo and behold, I had just found a 3.5 floppy (you guys remember what those are,… Continue Reading “Thursday Reviews: My Second Grade Notebook”

Product-of-Your-Time Rhetoric – Is Awareness the Answer?

Agatha Christie is my third mentor for this year, and she’s also the third British writer who published actively in the ’20s and ’30s. Woolf, Wodehouse, and Christie could, very conceivably, have hung out and had some beers together. They were all about the… Continue Reading “Product-of-Your-Time Rhetoric – Is Awareness the Answer?”

Plato and Aristotle Weigh in on Agatha Christie

Back in the olden days, Plato made the argument that still resonates today: Violence on T.V. causes violence in real life. Okay, maybe that’s not a direct quote. But the essence of the argument is there. According to Plato in his Republic, poets specifically… Continue Reading “Plato and Aristotle Weigh in on Agatha Christie”

Sorry, guys, this week has gotten too far away from me. Will return to regularly scheduled blogging on Monday. Don’t worry–plenty of Agatha Christie coming your way soon. You can stop banging down the doors now. =)

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