I am a fan of the "Monk" series and I wanted to ask the question:
Question 1: Who are your favorite detectives from TV series, movies or books?
Specifically, there must be a mystery, usually a murder or violent crime, clues, one or more detectives and finally solving the crime. Old and new are fine. Movies, books and TV series are fine.
I have been working on a "compendium" of "Murder-Mystery Elements" (my WIP #3 below), focusing on Clues. It is a labor of love at the moment, but I am interested in the general thoughts about the Detective-Style Murder-Mysteries such as Monk and Columbo. The clues I am accumulating could be used as a source for mystery writers that are stuck, but it is just something I am doing on the side for now.
I know, for instance, that there are only so many things that can be used for clues (without becoming too cliche), but the manner in which the particular detective creatively uses those clues is what is most interesting to me.
This is just a starting point, but one such "clue" (I suppose some people might call it a "trope"), I have generalized in my WIP as follows:
Evidence (contradicts, inconsistent with, impossible for) facts about the (clothing, health, vision, hearing, knowledge, gender, height, weight, languages, phobias) of the (victim, suspect). Like I said, this is a first try. It will be based mostly on research done by watching or reading actual Mysteries, although I have added my own ideas to some of the clues.
This particular clue fits into several categories: Clothing, Evidence, Hearing, Impossibilities, Inconsistencies, Knowledge, Suspects, Victims, Vision, Gender
One goal might be to assist beginner Mystery writers with ideas, based on various situations in their Mystery plots (keeping in mind that beginning mystery writers may not know how to do things well or may experience creative blocks). For instance, if a writer had the problem "The killer left an article of clothing in the victim's house, but I don't know how to make it work in the plot", my compendium could provide various creative suggestions and examples from different categories to help them. Of course, experienced mystery writers would have no such need.
Question 2: Would something like the above be useful to new Mystery writers?
Thanks for any participation and kind comments.
[Edits in green, for clarification]