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Course Description

This course is perfect for those who have an interest in either Creative Writing or the Mystery Genre. If you love to write and want to move into this popular genre, or you love to read a great mystery and have often thought you could do it, this course is for you.

Taking you through the processes of creating your Mystery Novel, this course begins by looking at the mystery genre itself and examining this type of writing attribute. We'll then move on to helping you become inspired and motivated as you get started. We'll also focus on some of the important elements of a good mystery--the setting, the characters, the plot, etc.--and help you to become familiar with all the tools the mystery writer uses to create multi-layered, addictive mystery fiction that a reader just cannot put down.

Our innovative writing exercises will get your creative juices flowing by bringing out the writer in you and sparking new ideas. Additionally, there are questions after each lesson which will allow you to recap what you have learned and test your knowledge.

The entire course is designed to offer you great information in a way that will get you thinking about your own mystery and personal writing practices. Whatever your age, experience or level of ability, this course constantly challenges and informs you so that your writing can't fail to improve and you will learn how to stay motivated and inspired through the entire writing process.

For new, aspiring writers--become the mystery writer you have always wanted to be! And for seasoned writers looking to expand their horizons--we'll help strengthen your writing abilities with this very informative course. So join us today!
Mystery writing

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Writing Creative Fiction Picture
Writing Creative Fiction Picture

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Course Lessons

  • Lesson 1: The Mystery Genre

    This lesson looks at what makes a story a mystery and defines the crucial elements of this genre.
  • Lesson 2: Starting Out

    This lesson aims to look at how you can find and collect ideas that inspire you, moving on to give practical advice on getting that pen to paper for the first time -- planning, plotting, and brainstorming.
  • Lesson 3: Research

    This lesson gives practical tips on where to find your research and how to write about real-life mysteries.
  • Lesson 4: Storytelling -- Plot & Sub-Plot

    This lesson gives practical advice on how to develop a plot that works.
  • Lesson 5: Storytelling -- Characters

    This lesson shows how characters can be developed and getting to know your characters so they can be well-rounded and three-dimensional.
  • Lesson 6: Storytelling -- The Narrative

    This lesson gives advice, not on how a mystery should be narrated, but on what a writer's options are in terms of telling the story.
  • Lesson 7: Mysterious Elements -- The Red Herring

    A red herring misleads the reader, takes them on a wild goose chase. It is a staple of the mystery genre.
  • Lesson 8: Mysterious Elements -- Violence and Murder

    This lesson looks at how a writer can avoid isolating the reader by taking things too far.
  • Lesson 9: Mysterious Elements -- Suspense

    Suspense is how a writer keeps the reader reading their mystery. To achieve that un-put-downable effect, it is essential that you get the pace of the story just right, so the reader is kept involved and interested.
  • Lesson 10: Mysterious Elements - Realism

    This lesson aims to help writers convey a sense of the real world by helping them identify and banish any unrealistic, overly contrived elements in their mystery.
  • Lesson 11: Mysterious Elements - Revelation

    It is difficult to decide, and every story is different, but this lesson offers some great advice on how to resolve the mystery and satisfy your readers.
  • Lesson 12: Redrafting a Mystery

    This lesson gives professional advice on redrafting, editing, and maintaining the mystery for writers of mysteries.
  • Lesson 13: Overcoming Mystery Writer's Block

    Overcoming writer's block can be a nightmare for any writer of fiction, but this lesson offers practical, useful advice for the writer of mysteries who may be lacking in motivation or inspiration.
Average Lesson Rating: (944 votes)
4.5 / 5 Stars (Average Rating) 4.5 / 5 Stars (Average Rating) 4.5 / 5 Stars (Average Rating) 4.5 / 5 Stars (Average Rating) 4.5 / 5 Stars (Average Rating)
"Extraordinarily Helpful"
Online CEU Certificate
1.2 CEUs
12 Contact Hours
  • Document Your Lifelong Learning Achievements
  • Earn an Official Certificate Documenting Course Hours and CEUs
  • Verify Your Certificate with a Unique Serial Number Online
  • View and Share Your Certificate Online or Download/Print as PDF
  • Display Your Certificate on Your Resume and Promote Your Achievements Using Social Media
Course Title: Mystery Writing
Course Number: 7550292
Languages: English - United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, and other English speaking countries
Course Type: Professional Development
CEU Value: 1.2 IACET CEUs (Continuing Education Units)
CE Accreditation: Universal Class, Inc. has been accredited as an Authorized Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET), 1760 Old Meadow Road, Suite 500, McLean, VA 22102.
Grading Policy: Earn a final grade of 70% or higher to receive an online/downloadable CEU Certification documenting CEUs earned
Assessment Method: Lesson assignments and review exams
Instructor: Melissa Behrend
Syllabus: View Syllabus
Duration: Continuous: Enroll anytime!
Course Fee: $65.00 (no CEU Certification) || with CEU Certification: $90.00

Learning Outcomes

By successfully completing this course, students will be able to:
  • Describe the mystery genre.
  • Conduct research.
  • Describe storytelling essentials--plot and sub-plot.
  • Define characters.
  • Define the narrative.
  • Define the red herring.
  • Summarize violence and murder.
  • Create suspense.
  • Demonstrate methods for creating realism.
  • Demonstrate techniques for the final revelation.
  • Summarize redraft a mystery.
  • Summarize methods for overcoming mystery writer's block, and
  • Demonstrate mastery of lesson content at levels of 70% or higher.
An IntroductionAssignment5
Lesson 1 AssignmentAssignment15
Lesson 1: The Mystery GenreExam11
Lesson 2 AssignmentAssignment15
Lesson 2: Starting OutExam12
Lesson 3 AssignmentAssignment15
Lesson 3: ResearchExam12
Lesson 4 AssignmentAssignment15
Lesson 4: Storytelling; Plot & Sub-plotExam10
Lesson 5 AssignmentAssignment15
Lesson 5: Storytelling; CharacterExam8
Lesson 6 AssignmentAssignment15
Lesson 6: Storytelling; NarrativeExam9
Lesson 7 AssignmentAssignment15
Lesson 7: Mysterious Elements; The Red HerringExam9
Lesson 8 AssignmentAssignment15
Lesson 8: Mysterious Elements; Violence and MurderExam7
Lesson 9 AssignmentAssignment15
Lesson 9: Mysterious Elements; SuspenseExam10
Lesson 10 AssignmentAssignment15
Lesson 10: Mysterious Elements; RealismExam10
Lesson 11 AssignmentAssignment15
Lesson 11: Mysterious Elements; RevelationExam10
Lesson 12: Redrafting a MysteryExam10
Lesson 13A AssignmentAssignment15
Lesson 13B AssignmentAssignment15
Lesson 13: Overcoming Mystery Writer's BlockExam10
Total Points:328

Student Testimonials

  • "Each aspect was helpful, I liked doing the bits of writing for the course. Stimulating and interesting." -- Joan H.
  • "I found the overall experience to be excellent. The almost instant response of the instructor to questions, to assignments, and to exams was very helpful, as were her suggestions." -- Vincent H.
  • "Instructor and course were excellent. Hope to take more courses with this instructor." -- Kyle B.
  • "The explanation on the parts of the actual mystery story were very helpful. The instructor was superb." -- Anita K.
  • "Overall a great experience!" -- Jean P.
  • "This was one of the most enjoyable classes I've taken in my memory. I've been reading mysteries all my life, but never knew how to construct one. There were so many facets I've never thought about until now. The instructor is extremely encouraging!" -- Tricia S.
  • "The whole course was informative. I have taken previous courses with this instructor and can't say enough about her attention to every details and her instant response to grading and reviewing assignments." -- Patricia F.
  • View More Testimonials...

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