Every story has a different formula, It can be its strength or its weakness. The formula of mystery fiction is both a strength and a weakness of the said genre. Mystery fiction has a formula that starts with a tragic event that affects the protagonist, then some unanswered questions about the said event will rise, then a series of clues will arise, the antagonist will show up and prevent the main character to move ahead, then lastly an unavoidable answer to all the question will surface.
It can be the strength of the genre because the writers will know what to write and the readers will know what to expect. It can also be a basis for creating a story that is nearly perfect for the readers. The formula holds some effectiveness because of the fact that it is still used nowadays. It also creates a fixed business for authors to sell their books. This formula will help lessen the pressure of an author because everyone enjoys this kind of mysteries and understand them.
On the other hand, it can be a weakness because the formula keeps on repeating. This formula is overused, that some story is becoming predictable. An author loses his or her creativity and the impact of the story will reduce. Once you figure out the formula, most of the things that you will watch and read you will know the answers or know what will happen before it happens. And because of this, the movie or the book will be less enjoyable. It will counter the term “mystery” once you figure out the formula.
But at the end of the day, the formula of mystery fiction can still be its strength or its weakness but it will depend on the author on how they will improve or enhance the formula. Authors can just use this a guide, like a cookbook when cooking or baking, and this should not restrict them from putting their own twist on it. Buildings and mystery fiction are somewhat the same, if the foundation or base is strong, it will stand but if the foundation is weak it will fall or collapse.