Thursday, June 12, 2008

A good reason to kill your mother

It's black Friday tomorrow and I have a meeting with fellow writers. We get together twice a month to critique each others' work, each chocolate and chat. It works well. We usually try to do something different on special occasions and black Friday is one of those times. We'll dress in black, have candles and maybe some wine.

Being the bright spark I am, I suggested those who had time could write a murder mystery to share on the evening. Now I have to do it. It was my bright idea, afterall.

I have a great scene for the victim (already dead at the beginning of the story). I have a murderer and a method of discovering who she is and how she gets what she deserves. I just can't think of one believable reason for her to kill her mother. I know she did it, I know it was planned and deliberate; I was there.

So far I've thought of:

Her mother refused to give her money to go to America to be discovered (time line too great)
Her mother told her she had to move out and make her own way in the world (who wouldn't want to)
The girl was abused and blames her mother for allowing it (done to death)
Her mother was co-trustee of a trust fund from her grandfather and wouldn't release the principal before she turned 25 (the other trustee had agreed to release the principal)

I'm still thinking about the last one. It might work if I can tweak it a little. I'm still looking for a logical reason. In my brain, everything has to have a reason; a logical reason. This girl is obviously crazy, so her reason won't be logical to me, but it has to be for her. I keep circling around greed and power as reasons for murder - they make sense to me - but I'm missing something here. This girl's motivation is something different and I can't grasp it. Maybe I should look at passion too.

And I have to finish this story tonight - the meeting's tomorrow and I've promised home baking so won't have any time tomorrow for writing.

Any ideas?


Jim Harris said...

Maybe she's jealous of her mother for artistic or professional reasons. Maybe for some reason she has always competed with her mother and killing her is the way to win the race, so to speak. The irony could be people tell her after her mother is dead, that she will never be as good as her mother.

glediar said...

Jealousy! Of course. I could only think of passion, greed and power. But of course there's jealousy and fear as well that could be motivations for murder.

I think I'll create a database of motivations for murder and list some scenarios under each one - like this one of yours. I like it.

I was stuck for time so I ended up going with the trust fund idea but jealousy would have worked as well.

I might get a new story out of this idea of yours next week.

Thanks Jim. I appreciate the time you've taken.