How to write a mystery novel with Greg Mosse

Ref: S1D31288

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About this course

On this dynamic day workshop, you will discover how to transform the germ of an idea into a coherent and engaging plot, full of suspense and mystery, with the author of 'The Coming Darkness' and 'The Maisie Cooper Mysteries'.

Course Description

Greg Mosse will share techniques for developing compelling mystery plots, led by intriguing characters in gripping locations, with cunning twists – in an exciting collaborative workshop, creating an outline of an entire novel in just one day.

Outline timetable for the day:

09:00–9:15 Arrival Registration – introductions

09:15–10:30 Session 1 An Outline of a Mystery Novel

What is the shape of a mystery novel? How should an author understand the ‘set-up’, the development, the acceleration and the climax?

10:45–11:15 Break Morning coffee and biscuits; time to think and perhaps research

11:15–12:45 Session 2 The Cast of Characters

They are all in conflict with one another. They all have good – though perhaps not ethical – reasons to commit a crime. Who are they? How are they connected? What compelling reasons trap them in the suspenseful plot?

12:45–14:00 Lunch A delicious lunch and, perhaps, a walk around the prize-winning gardens – plus time for creative reflection

14:00–15:45 Session 3 A Sequence of Dramatic Events

Once the reader understands the location and the situation, things begin to change. Character and motivation are revealed through a crescendo of intriguing dramas.

15:45–16:15 Break Afternoon tea and biscuits; time to think and perhaps research

16:15–17:00 Session 4 Whodunnit and howdunnit?

In the end, the reader has to be satisfied by a plausible but surprising ending. Having devised a powerful conclusion, the writer goes back and makes sure that there are sufficient clues. Plus, we will close with a Q&A!


Timetable for one day courses

Students should arrive by 9am for registration.

Classes are from 9.15 - 5pm

Lunch is included.

Course Materials

What students need to bring

  • Pen/pencils, notebook or paper; laptop computer
  • The tutor will bring digital resources to share using a projector and screen.

Additional information

Please wear appropriate clothing/aprons for the workshop or studio, this includes stout covered footwear (no sandals or open toes).


Greg Mosse

Greg is a ‘writer & encourager of writers’. His thriller THE COMING DARKNESS was published by Moonflower in November 2022 and has been named one of the best thriller books of 2022, in the Times.

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