I grabbed this off of Goodreads and I think we have to do it for obvious reasons that are so obvious I’m not even going to list them.
But, this would be a kind of short post if it was all we did, so I figure let’s turn it into a bit of a creative writing exercise! And why not? We’re all either in love with novels or secretly wishing to write one, or both!
This is Booknerd Wednesday – we can do whatever the hell we want around here, like we’re guests on the Maury show.
So, Step One: Find the title of your mystery bestseller…
My bestselling mystery novel is…… *unenthusiastic drum roll*
The Stalker Under the Stairs.
Step Two: Write up a short synopsis for your novel based on the title.
But, before I do that, I want to share a weird real-life event that happened at my house just yesterday. My stepdaughter got home from school and sent my husband a text saying someone had left a note on our back deck. That means whoever left the note had to open my fence gate, go into my backyard and purposefully leave this note, folded at our sliding door, for us to find.
On red construction paper, in the handwriting of a small child (or a teenage boy because we all know they have notoriously terrible handwriting), the note read: Dear Reader, I am a child with no friends.
What do I do with this?! My husband wants to write back and leave it outside again, like a game of passing notes, but I feel like that’s inviting this alleged child to keep coming into our backyard. I want to get a motion-activated light, because my bedroom faces the backyard. If it goes off, I’ll know.
Also, I’m getting mild The Watcher vibes, which I wrote about for True Crime Tuesday a couple weeks back.
*GASP* What if someone read that post and is now trying to fuck with me?
…That would be amazing.
Okay, for reals though, Step Two:
The Stalker Under the Stairs would have to be inspired by The Watcher, it just makes sense, but more sinister.
Kate, is a recently divorced mother of two. She moves into a new home with her kids, a fresh start. Leaving the pain of her failed marriage behind, she’s looking forward to starting over, far away from her ex-husband and his young new girlfriend, who he left his family for.
The house seems perfect. It has old charm and renovation projects Kate can sink her teeth into, to focus her energy and thoughts. Hidden away from the main road by established trees, the house is private; a sanctuary where Kate and her young boys can heal and create a new normal.
Kate blames her two mischievous boys for moving or taking her things – her cellphone is missing but turns up on the porch, she brought a cup of coffee into the living room, but after leaving the room for a moment, finds her coffee back in the kitchen. Lights are turning on, ones she swore she turned off and the dog was locked in the basement. But her boys swear it isn’t them doing these little things.
She blames the size of the old house for the noises she hears in the middle of the night – floorboards creaking, door hinges squeaking and pipes banging.
After a day out shopping with her boys, the family comes homes to find the front door of the house wide open. Not willing to take any chances, Kate calls the police. The officer’s check the property for anything out of the ordinary. Under the crawl space of the stairs in the basement, they find where someone has been living. An old sleeping bag, garbage and food, and buckets used as a bathroom. But most disturbing are the photos of Kate sleeping that decorate the crawl space.
Kate is horrified and sends her boys to stay with her mother out of town, until the cops find whoever has been living under the stairs.
With a police officer stationed outside for protection, Kate spends her first night alone in her home.
The sound of a relentless car horn wakes Kate in the middle of the night. She stumbles to her bedroom window and looks out through darkness and downpour of rain. The tableau of the police cruiser, one door open and the officer slumped over the wheel, sends Kate’s pulse-raising. The officer’s head is pressed into the horn.
Kate backs away from the window, ready to bolt. But the wet footprints on her bedroom floor stop her short. She slowly turns, knowing she’s not alone, feeling the eyes on her. Her breath caught in her lungs, she sees a man, shrouded by shadow, sitting in the armchair in the corner of her room.
“I live here too,” he says.
Leave your Mystery title and synopsis in the comments for me, or make your own post. Just tag me so I can read them!
Until next time, Booknerds…