The opening lines of your crime stories
Update: Friday 10th July 2009. This contest is now closed to new entrants - watch tonight's One Show to see which of your opening lines get a mention on air. Scroll down to read the opening lines of your crime stories, and Andrew Taylor's crime writing tips!
Sandi Toksvig explores why crime fiction is so popular among British readers. Watch the film below:
So, we're asking you to write the opening 25 words of a crime / murder mystery story that's set in your hometown, and send it into us. The best opening lines will get a mention on tomorrow's show.
Please send in:
a) The title of your crime story.
b) The opening 25 words (or less) of your story, set in your hometown. Please don't write more than 25 words!
c) Don't forget to add your genuine first name and location to your 25 words - so we know who to mention on air.
Closing date for submissions is 1pm, 10th July 2009.
Andrew Taylor's crime writing tips!
Need some inspiration? In her film, Sandi Toksvig meets award winning author Andrew Taylor. Here are his top five crime writing tips:
1. Begin with characters and a situation that really interest you - but you don't need to know the ending before you start.
2. Surprise us, and come up with something new - avoid the temptation to clone Miss Marple or Inspector Morse.
3. Remember that a good story, with a crime, are all you need. These days a crime story needn't be a whodunnit.
4. Keep your readers guessing all the time - make them wait for your revelations, and don't let them relax.
5. Keep writing, and don't stop until you reach the end - you can always fine-tune the plot later.
Update: Watch Matthew Kelly read our pick of the opening lines to your crime stories below.
Andrew Taylor's website.