Brenda Chapman

Category: Brenda Chapman

Every crime novel begins with a disquieting event, whether in the news or observed, that ferments in the author’s imagination, sometimes, for years before appearing on the pages. The germ of the idea for Shallow End, fourth in the Stonechild and Rouleau police procedural series, came from my earlier years working as a special education teacher.

The End Game

Posted on April 27 by Brenda Chapman

One of the toughest parts about writing a mystery novel is crafting the ending. When I begin a manuscript, I have a general idea of the crime and who the culprit will be. Over the next 80,000 to 90,000 words, I develop characters, insert clues and red herrings, and work to make the plot gallop along at a steady clip. Along about the point where the action reaches its climax and the killer is to be revealed, the agonizing begins. How will my sleuth put together all of the clues in a way that is not obviously being manipulated by me?