The more murder mysteries I watch, the more I notice an intriguing, often overlooked character: the Nice Guy. Every spooky film seems to have one and they’re always full of surprises!
No matter how good I’d look in a trench coat, though, I must disregard my undying love for mystery films because the Nice Guy (or girl or person) can be found everywhere. And I’ve come to a conclusion about these “nice” people: never underestimate them.
They can be powerful forces in a story...for good, evil, and in between. Whether it’s the happy helpful concierge behind the hotel desk, the quiet student buried beneath assignments, or a cloaked old man brimming with secrets, what these people reveal is entirely up to us, the writers! The secrets they carry and how they use their “niceness” as a vehicle to move a story along is one of my favorite mysteries to solve.
These seemingly well-intentioned people can be red herrings, or genuinely kind people who want to help. They may even carry the mantle of mentor. Or they might be sleazy usurpers and rogue-ish narcissists. So much potential behind such a mundane character, just begging to be unlocked!
My advice to myself and other writers is use your “Nice Guys” wisely. We never know when we might need them...or, need to use them. Because writers definitely aren’t the nice guys!