Sometimes used interchangeably but they refer to very different conditions of human response. Fear and anxiety are usually rooted in real events, very real physical or emotional danger. Anxiety is usually understood to be more vague than fear and refer more to emotional mood or apprehension (job, marriage, safety).
Panic is fear at an inappropriate time, at least inappropriate to others, as the panic can be very real and uncomfortable to the person undergoing a panic attack. Persons with panic fears may be very debilitated by things that others have no difficulty in handling (going outside, into crowds, tiny spaces, dark spaces, etc.). If you hold your breath for as long as you can, there is a feeling of tightness, of a need to escape: this is very close to what someone in a classic panic attack experiences.
BASIC MYSTERY STRUCTURE
As with other fiction types mystery will begin in ordinary time where life is normal. It will proceed into the abnormal where challenges are faced, met, and overcome before the final resolution. Along the way may be fake leads, liars, and sub-plots to muddy the waters and leave the reader or listener guessing. Agatha Christie often used a format where a crime began the story, several suspects were introduced, another crime occurred, and in a final denouement scene the erstwhile detectives would gather everyone in a parlor and proceed to expound on just how marvelously brilliant they had been in uncovering the criminal(s). If it sounds familiar it should be as it one of the most overused vehicles found in writing. Elizabeth Peters (aka Barbara Michaels), however, does a marvelous take on this in her book Naked Once More. Christie often “cheated” bringing into play in the denouement elements for which she had laid no previous groundwork (foreshadowing, red herring, or clue). Be aware this upsets many readers to the point of throwing books across the room and swearing never to read that particular writer ever again.
Not the kind of review most writers dream of receiving.
WHAT, WHO, WHY, WHEN, WHERE
The traditional and classic serving men Kipling wrote about, serve well in the creation of story, most especially the mystery. The structure of the simple mystery will contain all of these elements, with several in prominence.
WHO in most stories is the most important because good story structure requires characters who are realistic and likable (or at least interesting). Their natures, their values and character, will drive all subsequent action in a story.
However, in a mystery, WHAT, WHO, WHY with WHERE function as the team of horses pulling the story wagon. Mystery involves a WHAT (a crime, an unknown), the WHERE will help tell the story and convey a mysterious setting (setting will help paint the mood of the story), and the momentum of the story is to discover both the WHO and the WHY as the climax to the story.
Outline your mystery applying these elements:
WHAT has happened? A crime, a mysterious event, or some other action that takes the reader from the real, humdrum world and firmly places them into a realm outside the normal course of events. The signpost may not read the “Twilight Zone” but it should definitely indicate “CAUTION: SOMETHING UNUSUAL IS OCCURING”.
WHERE has it happened? The small town of Normal, USA must be shown to have a past or people in it that may have a negative side that they have hidden away from the truly normal members of the community.
Image taking a photo a place three different times during the course of a day.
In the morning the shadows are crisp, the colors rich, and the shadows are rich and thick but in recession.
At noon the light is everywhere and colors are more washed out , and the shadows harder to find. Things run together so that details are harder to define in such a view. There may be a glare that hides the true aspect of objects seen at this time.
Then look at the scene as the sun is setting and notice the way the shadows came seem to be softer, the colors rich and warm or bold and stark (think of a November evening with the black bare stalk of a tree silhouetted against a vibrant pink and orange sky) and how the shadows seem to dominate the landscape.