The police procedural

Riozoli and IslesCandice: I like to read police based fiction as the main body of my reading matter, as well as watching it on TV too.

To me it is the toughest kind of writing, as I always struggle to work out how they come up so many different ways for people to commit a crime, with added twists and turns and red herrings. I know, during the writing of the book, Phil and I have created some side stories to make things more interesting but none of them involve having to know about police procedure or medical technical jargon. They just involve mad ideas that popped in to our heads.

When I read and watch these dramas I am just amazed at how they come up with the route to the end of the story, does the crime and culprit come first and then the padding of extra characters. How do they manage to find so many ways for people to seem like they’ve done it, when they haven’t ?

I love to work out who has actually done it before the end, I actually quite good at it, but it doesn’t mean I could write a story like that. So hats off to all you crime writers out there.


Filed under Candice, Writing

3 responses to “The police procedural

  1. I get the feeling that TV crime dramas probably owe very little to real policing, the ones from the USA having nothing to do with Real Lfe.
    The new series of Whitechapel has morphed (like that word, in fact it’s my WOTW) into a horror/fantasy drama with lots of dark corners. I keep shouting at the telly (I’m of that age) to turn some lights on. Hat’s off to anyone who can write a fiction book as I can’t two words together put coherently!

    • I suspect you have a point. Much real detective work will involve stuff that is far too boring for TV. Going over “paper trails” takes a lot longer than a car chase.

      The other thing is, they are always solving murders but it’s actually quite a rare crime, especially if you ignore the spur of the moment killings between people who know each other. Murder makes for dramatic poltlines though so it’s what we the writers focus on. Who would read a book where Morse solves the mystery of the Tesco shoplifter?

  2. In the show you’ve put a picture of ‘Rizzoli and Isles’ its as much about one characters shoes as it is the story!

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