Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Not so hidden agenda
The setting for "Mayhem in Miniature," due August 5, is a senior residence facility … what my parents called an Old Age Home. The plot revolves around a senior who's a murder suspect, and all her friends in the home who offer the police information about the night of the murder.
What they claim to have seen seems incoherent and unlikely, so it's immediately discounted, but—and this is not a spoiler at all—they all turn out to be right.
One "message" I'm sending is that we shouldn't tune out old people! [Did I feel this way before I was old? I don't remember.]
For the periodic table mysteries, I wanted to present some basic science for the general reader, without being heavy handed. I hope it worked.
So my real question here is, do you as writers have "hidden agenda" in your books? Do you as readers want that? Resent that?
I've heard observations like "I write (or read) just for entertainment, not to learn anything."
But are they mutually exclusive? Don't we learn best while we're enjoying ourselves?