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Red Herrings as the pertain to mysteries are the attractive distractors that lead the reader (and often the detective) off on a wild goose chase and divert them from the real murderer. Almost everyone has a vested interest in lying, and the real trick is figuring out which one is actually telling the truth. The Red Herring is simply a way of expanding the plotline, bringing in tension, creating dramatic conflict between characters, and propelling the action forward.