I don’t know, yet.

See, I’m trying to write a crime novel. And I’m generating story ideas, using the method I described in a previous post (“Lesson: Less”, remember? No? It’s right next to this one. And the link’s in the sidebar, there).

Only, the mission this time is not to bring in a story in as few words as possible. It’s to develop something that will sustain a full-length novel: plot, backstory, character development issues, and all.

Here’s some of what I’ve been able to come up with. So far.

The Prompt: solo wax therapy moose candle key

The Premise: A glamorous celebrity is found dead at an exclusive spa. All that’s found in the aroma therapy room with her body is a single candle, burning down to a nub, a blank key card, and the word “moose”, written in wax on a table.

The Prompt: naive west punt fog unconscious sceptical

The Premise: A small-time hustler, heavily indebted to a gambling syndicate, is found unconscious in a sealed room, at a poker table. All his fellow players are dead. Among them is the son of the syndicate boss.

To clear his slate, the hustler is sent west, on an apparent suicide mission, which may hold the key to the murder.

The Prompt: artificial journal identical sunscreen underwear

The Premise: While searching through the underwear drawer in her childhood bedroom, our heroine discovers a journal, written in her own hand. It must be fake, because it chronicles events in her past that never happened.

In the coming days, weeks, and months, she receives cryptic messages, mail, and meetings alluding to places she’s supposed to have been, and things she’s supposed to have done in the present – but has no memory of.

Is she losing her mind?

Or is there a doppelganger out there, living an alternate life?

A tanning parlor or sunscreen plays a key role in resolving the dilemma.

The Prompt: sarcastic passport nauseating

The Premise: Feeling nauseous on an international flight, our hero returns from the bathroom, to find his passport has been switched, to that of a known criminal / terrorist, who bears a startling resemblance. This is made clear to him by sarcastic and increasingly hostile immigration / security operatives at the airport, where he is detained, and subjected to intensive questioning about a criminal / terrorist act about to be committed in the city.

The Prompt: wish orange sunrise solicitor specialist

The Permise: The terms of a will are communicated to the beneficiaries by their lawyer. The vast estate will go to the one who murders [and provides documentary proof of this] the specialist who failed to save the deceased’s life.

Preferably in the most law-untraceable way possible – though the estate and its influence are vast enough to take care of legal fees, bribes, etc. Certainly between sunset on the day of the will [the reading] and sunrise, the next day.

I think this one might work better as a movie, but there you go.

Any thoughts, or comments?

In any event, the search continues.