One of the questions asked at my author talk last week was why did I chose to develop three plots? There wasn’t time to really delve into this issue, so I gave a short, but honest answer: I didn’t think I had the experience to develop only one plot line.
That question stuck with me through the week so I went to my personal library. Fredric Brown, writing a section on plot lines for Mystery Writer’s Handbook, states, “plots aren’t ‘got,’ they are constructed.”
In An Unexpected Death, I knew one plot line, but the second one developed as I developed the character Nick. I needed him to be doing something, and as the story developed, I read articles about China and their need for energy, which changed Nick’s original role. And voilá, without prior planning, I had another plot line that lead to a surprising subplot near the end.