Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Modus Operandi - Ways to Commit Murder

Modus Operandi for Villains.

“Kill a man and you are an assassin, kill millions of men and you are a conqueror, kill everyone and you are a God.” So said Jean Rostand.
I love that quote but life is not sacred in the telling of a good thriller story!
How many ways can you kill a person? How long is a piece of string, you ask.
One of the most intriguing ways I came across was using an ice stalactite! Believable or not – it was written into a story. Of course as far as working out what the murder weapon was, the police had a hard time for there was simply a pool of water on the floor by the time the body was discovered.
It’s fair enough food for thought though. Thriller writers are having to come up with ever more ingenious ways to commit their make believe murders as we’ve all heard it all before.
In a seminar once, we were asked to look around the room and find ways to kill a person. It was just a bit of fun! But it was unsettling and yes, funny, what the imagination of 15 people came up with. Apart from the obvious ones like pushing guy through an upstairs window (we were on the 6th floor at the time), strangling and bashing someone’s head against the floor, there were some inventive scenarios. One chap suggested grinding up the board rubber and shoving it down someone’s throat. Another wanted to crush a person’s chest by piling all the furniture (which was very heavy) on top of him, whilst someone else suggested using the light fitting to electrocute!
Perhaps those are a bit far-fetched but you get the picture…
So have you any interesting ways a villain could commit a murder?


  1. I love looking around and finding ways to kill a person. As I'm sitting in the kitchen at the moment, I think my best method would be to hit the victim over the head with heavy pots, use the electric carving knife and go for a main artery or simply shove him in the freezer.

    Ah, we do have fun, don't we? ;)

  2. Thanks for the comment, Shirley. And yes - we do have fun, don't we??

  3. I am a Californian transplanted to Norway. Secret (Shhh!) but during the hay-day of carjackings in the SF Bay Area 'someone' I knew carried a mini crossbow in their pickup truck - just in case. A crossbow is silent, unlike a gun.
    Also, I work 6 summer months in one of my jobs caring/planting flowers on selected cemetary graves. You would be surprised how many bones I have found, including a skull. Graves are reused here (25 yrs or so) and it is not unusual to find a bone now and then after a grave is re-dug.
    Anyway, once you have a body to dispose of, boil the flesh off and bury the bones in a Norwegian cemetary (here and there) and none will be the wiser.

  4. What a fun seminar! I am always trying to find ways to kill people. If people could hear the things I think up in my head, they would avoid me like the plague. Great post.

  5. Interesting, thanks for sharing.

  6. Great Post, Pat!! Always love reading your blog.

  7. Hi Pat, I saw a film or TV show a long time ago, where the wife murdered her husband. She hit him over the head with a frozen leg of lamb. Later, she defrosted it, cooked it and served it up to the investigatinbg policemen. She got a way with it.