By Hillary Waugh (1920-2008).
Writer's Digest Books.
1991. 208 pages.
1. The transcendent and eccentric detective.
2. The admiring and slightly stupid foil.
3. The well-intentioned, blundering officials.
4. The locked-room convention.
5. The pointing finger of unjust suspicion.
6. The solution by surprise.
7. Solution by putting one's self in another's position.
8. Concealment by means of the ultra-obvious.
9. The staged ruse to force the culprit's hand.
10. Even the expansive and condescending explanation when the chase is done.
In other stories Poe also introduced:
11. The hidden clue.
12. The cipher.
However, he missed one important mystery story convention:
. . . there is one feature of the detective novel, vital to its existence, that not only Poe, but all his successors overlooked for more than seventy-five years. That is the element of Fair Play. [Pages 18-19]
Category: Detective fiction