The SHANNON MUIR’S INFINITE HOUSE OF BOOKS column on Mondays and Wednesdays is a place at Shannon Muir’s author website open to interviews and guest posts from other authors. One thing Shannon firmly believes in for readers not only to learn about new books available, but about those who craft the tales behind them. As its name implies, SHANNON MUIR’S INFINITE HOUSE OF BOOKS weekly column features writers from all genres of fiction who want their potential audience to get to know them, and their works, better – and occasionally may offer features from Shannon herself that support readers to discover words.
Today, find out more about the book THE ANCIENT TRIPOD OF PEACE.
The Ancient Tripod of Peace
by Kalen Cap
Genre: YA Mystery
Release Date: March 13th 2018
Teens Lexi and Gil face relic-thieving secret societies.
Plagued by loneliness in her Lake Erie Islands community, vegan Lexi hopes to make like-minded friends in high school. But her dad’s job is jeopardized when relics are stolen from his museum, changing her priorities. And she finds her new teachers’ eerie dislike of her troubling.
His dad in jail, cipher enthusiast and bacon-loving Gil hopes freshman year will provide a clean slate. Soon, he discovers secret codes within a Shakespearean play while paired with Lexi, pulling him into an ancient mystery.
With the official museum burglary investigation stalled, the mismatched teen sleuths join forces to try and crack the case. Lexi’s inquiries and Gil’s codes capture their teachers’ attention. But these teachers have the stolen Tripod of Peace, a powerful relic sought by rival secret societies. Caught in these societies’ crossfire as thieves wield an instrument of astounding power, Gil and Lexi are in danger.
The Ancient Tripod of Peace is the first book in novelist Kalen Cap’s Teen Thief-Catchers Series. If you like stories with artifact treasures, fighting secret societies, and spirited protagonists, you’ll enjoy this novel.
Guest Post from the Author
Handling plot —
Though some writers are “pantsers,” those that write creatively without an outline, I find outlining to be essential for writing a mystery novel. If the major events of a story are well-planned, then this allows more complex plots to keep readers intrigued, whether they are guessing who is involved in crimes or the motives behind them.
To outline effectively for more complex plots, research is an important tool. Since I enjoy reading history and prehistory anyway, I’ve found this research lets me delve into complexities that are often missed in traditional education. For example, in ancient times, Pythagoras was as well known for his mysticism teachings as for his mathematics. Bringing that research into a modern storyline helps readers relate to a character more readily when already familiar with a historical figure or event.
While plenty of resources review the classic arc of a story plot, writers have plenty of choices in handling the specific components. Traditionally, characters in a setting encounter a problem. Their journey towards hopeful resolution leads to rising action that reaches a climax. There may or may not be much falling action after the climax regarding a resolution along with a final denouement.
If the writer chooses a complex plot, exposition within the various plot elements may be simplified. If the plot is kept simple, red herrings to keep readers guessing may be introduced. Or a writer may have more complex exposition about specific details and descriptions, adding richness and complexity to a simple plot. A middle path between too much simplicity and too much complexity will keep a mystery interesting without turning it into a slog.
Since “The Ancient Tripod of Peace” has a more complex plot and denouement, I kept the exposition rather simplified for a quicker, fast read. The choices for writers within the standard framework are virtually endless on how to handle plot. For mysteries, I feel that it is usually better to have the plot well-planned and researched.