Serial Review: The Bloodstained Letter

My latest serial concluded on Sunday with Part 24. One of my shorter serials, constricted by the need to have the ‘showdown’ that was necessary for the story.

I would like to thank Jon at https://wilfredbooks.wordpress.com/ for his first line suggestion that started it. This was the first time I have used a ‘first line’ outside of a short story, and I felt it needed a longer serial to do it justice.

Some readers will be aware that my inspirations for the style of this story came from various well established detective fiction, ‘Cosy’ mysteries, and some TV shows. I had in mind the Agatha Christie ‘Miss Marple’ stories, the old TV series ‘Tales Of The Unexpected’, and more modern detective television shows such as ‘Murder She Wrote’, and ‘Midsomer Murders’.

There were quite a few characters, as well as a second plot involving characters from a book being written by the main protagonist. Old-school detective stories always seemed to have a lot of characters, and most of them were suspects at one time or another. They also usually feature some kind of showdown, everyone assembled in a room as the hero explains how he solved the case.

This time, I tried to turn that around, with the suspects explaining to the hero how he ended up where he did. On the way, I gave few clues, and took readers on a tour of some nice parts of southern England as the main character was given the run around on a circular wild goose chase. I had a lot of fun writing this, and attempted to inject some humour too.

It was well-received, with views never dropping below 110 for each episode, and some parts exceeding 130 views. Total views so far, given a score of 120 per episode, come to 2,880. Different parts are still being viewed as I type this, so I am confident the whole serial will have reached 3,000 views soon. As well as that, comment engagement was very good. Some readers tried to guess the outcome too, which is always rewarding.

Extra thanks to everyone who shared any part on social media, which is always appreciated.

I have the first part of the next serial already written, but I will give everyone a chance to catch up before I start that one. This week, I will compile all 24 parts into one complete story, for those of you that like to read the whole thing at once.

Best wishes to everyone, Pete.

32 thoughts on “Serial Review: The Bloodstained Letter

  1. I did enjoy it and loved all the characters. I enjoy Midsomer Murders and started watching it when we lived in Canada. A popular series there as well. Perhaps you should send them a story idea!

    Liked by 1 person

          1. We haven’t watched that one but we like Lewis and Endeavour and of course before that Morse. I also watched the latest Dalgliesh and liked it. Another one I really liked was Foyles War, but then I like the historical aspect as well.

            Liked by 1 person

  2. Once again, you’re most welcome for the inspiration of my first line, Pete: I knew you’d do a good job with it—much better than I would have been able to. I know my limitations, and one of them is that I can’t write good fiction! I look forward to reading through the compilation, and savouring all the details. Cheers, Jon.

    Liked by 1 person

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