Tuesday, September 11, 2012

A murder story - part of 2011 NANOWRIMO

Below is an initial sample of a creative fiction story I began writing last November for NANOWRIMO. After writing the initial 8,000 or so words last year for a story I have given two possible titles (either Death by Murder or The Suburban Murders), both of which are bad to poor. However, I personally think that the story, even though it sits unfinished, is beginning to develop. I can picture the two main characters -- co-workers who are also involved in a sexual relationship -- as they struggle with their own demons while investigating a string of violent murders which, initially, seem to have no connection until the killer begins to get rather brazen, almost taunting the team investigating the murders.

As I said, I have yet to finish this novel but I do have an outline of it and I am honestly seeking out your opinions on it.

Here goes, the first page is below for your reading pleasure...


A flock of uniformed police officers scurried about the unassuming suburban tract house. Two officers photographed various items scattered about the crime scene as the lead investigator strode through the home’s front door, taking a long, deep drink of coffee from his dented aluminum coffee mug.

“Where do you wanna start, Kline?” Kline’s young partner Miranda Grove asked.

As he inhaled deeply, looking around the home’s living room slowly, the tall, slender lead investigator shot a glance at his partner, the 24 year-old curvaceous blond officer Miranda Grove who had just asked the question and responded “Let’s see what brand of fork that is.”

Lead Investigator Dan Kline unblinkingly stared at the wall. It was previously a stark eggshell color but was now spattered with the blood of a young female in the prime of her life. Kline’s mind began to concoct a story about the woman’s life. She was nicely dressed with her hair impeccably styled. She appeared to be a natural brunette, her skin -- still warm to the touch -- was without a single blemish. Her eyes still open in an obviously shocked state. This caught her off guard. She probably had a cocktail night, maybe on Tuesdays, with some of her friends in the neighborhood. Probably in a book club too. Typical suburban crap. Her clothes, even now that they were covered with her own blood, were in pristine condition. She was wearing what Kline assumed to be stylish heels paired with the kind of structured denim that you’d see on a mannequin in most any high end department store. This woman truly cared about her appearance so what happened here? Did her jealous husband find her with another man? Was this a contract killing? Maybe a robbery gone violently wrong?

Officer Grove, with her police issue blue pants hugging her almost perfect hips and lifting her firm and round ass just the right amount, walked to the eggshell white wall in the living room and examined the victim up close. “True Temper,” Officer Grove said as she spun around to get Kline’s attention.

“Fuck, that’s a good fork. Pity that some sick fuck had to use it this way.” The new-appearing spading fork's handle was all that was visible, the tines plunged through the brunette's gut, pinning her limp body to the home's wall. Kline rubbed his right eye as he swallowed hard. “Let’s see if we can get some prints off of it. And could somebody try to find her husband, parents, kids, plastic surgeon, someone who knows, um, knew her."

“Hey, it still has a price tag on it. Wagner Hardware.”


Mrs Marcos said...

random thoughts:

"True Temper"...not sure what this means. Is this a character's name or an offhand comment meaning whoever killed the victim had a bad temper?

The fork...wasn't sure what you meant by this. At first I thought dinner fork since Kline says to check the brand of the fork. I assumed that was going to lead to a clue regarding financial status of victim or killer. By the end of the paragraph I was realizing it was some sort of gardening implement (or at least I was assuming that it had to be a huge garden fork to impale someone on a wall?) After I reread I saw the word "spading" fork, it took 3 read throughs to spot it so I don't know if that is my adhd or lazy reading style. Anyway, just a little thing I noticed.

Other than that, I definitely fell into the story right away. I'm already curious to read if there will be sexual tension between the partners, how they will handle working together while having a relationship. Obviously I'm also curious as to who would impale a suburban lady with a garden fork. Definitely an unusual method of murder that makes you think "what the fuck? who does that?!"

Sornie said...

Glad to see that someone read the first page of this story I have been working on. I like that the mention of the fork made you initially think that it was a dinner fork but my goal was to create some mystery and even mislead people as they read that -- going for sort of a big reveal, almost a "what the fuck?" type moment and it definitely is an unusual and rather violent method of murdering someone. I'll probably post the second page of the story sometime today.

Anonymous said...

Came here from Reddit; I actually got it as "True Temper" being the brand of the fork since the character immediately says, "Fuck, that's a good fork" -- referencing the quality of the brand.

I am not an avid reader of murder mysteries but the one I've read so far do match the sort of wording you're using. It's a subconscious thing to link the two partners together sexually, even if it is tension, just because it's male-female and the fact she's so young and "curvaceous" -- I am not sure if that's the implication you're going for but personally I think it's passe and cliche to have a sexual/romantic young-old relationship in a crime mystery. I think it'd be interesting if it was stuck at sexual tension but ultimately a mentor relationship.

Get rid of the um. I realize this is diction and this is just my opinion but it makes the hero look unsure and inexperienced which is at odds with the personality presented in the two paragraphs preceding it. He's a Sherlock-Holmes personality, though if you gave more hints to say that he is socially awkward or uncomfortable speaking, that'd be another thing altogether.

Good work.