Breaking the cliché

I’m working on my characterization and plot for my new suspense and I’m wondering how do you write people who aren’t the same as all the others without going over the top?
It’s a whodunit and there’s a body. Poor guy was really a neat person. He’d been through hard times but was getting his life together. Then there’s the hero and heroine. And the villain.
How do I make them unique?
How do I make the plot different from the 5000 other Intrigue submissions crossing the desk of the NY editors?
My goal this weekend is finding the answer to that question. By next week, I hope I’m writing.

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