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How to Write a Mystery, Writing Thrillers
Trying your hand at writing thrillers – the most exciting and suspenseful of all genres? Look no further for guidelines on crafting a compelling plot, creating incredible characters, constructing an airtight mystery, and much more.
Never underestimate the power of suspense—in any genre. Use these surefire techniques to make your book one readers won’t be able to put down.
by Elizabeth Sims
How do you follow up a smash hit like The Time Traveler’s Wife? For artist and author Audrey Niffenegger, it all comes down to embracing the freedom to create—on your own terms.
by Jessica Strawser
Creating characters’ backstories before you start writing is crucial because you’ll want to determine each one’s past experiences and the repercussions these experiences will have on your story before you begin. Here’s a close look at the different ways you can introduce backstory.
by Rachel Ballon
Here are 4 simple exercises to help you invent characters for your fiction.
by Nancy Kress
Here are 10 simple steps that will take your visibility from zero to standout in a short time, while also giving you ample opportunities to flex your expertise, carve out your niche topic and connect with your audience.
by Christina Katz
Here’s a Q&A with Marcy Kennedy, winner of the 2009 WD Popular Fiction Awards.
We’ve all been there: basking in the glow of a finished manuscript, only to read it over and realize something is wrong with the plot. Finding ourselves unable to identify the problem only makes matters worse. But take heart! Here are some common plot gaffes and sensible ways to revise without starting over.
by Laura Whitcomb
Here are some simple techniques for revising scenes so your edifice will stand the test of time.
by James Scott Bell
Karen Dionne, author of Freezing Point, reveals what her late hero, Michael Crichton, taught her about crafting solid fiction.
Brad Thor hit No. 1 with his seventh novel, The Last Patriot, but it came at a cost. Read on to find out why Thor’s passion keeps him writing—even in the face of death threats.
by Maria Schneider Read more
At the 2008 Maui Writers Conference, bestselling thriller writer Gary Braver (Skin Deep) said that dread drives thrillers. You know who the good guys and bad guys are. Dull moments will lose an audience, and writers can’t afford to lose an audience, even for one page. To captivate an audience (and agents and publishers), Braver offers these 10 essential ingredients for a successful thriller. Read more
Bestselling thriller writer Steve Berry says there are eight key rules that all writers must know and follow. Read more
Having scribed detective novels and written for HBO’s “The Wire,” George Pelecanos knows what it takes to get down and dirty for his own brand of social crime fiction.
by Jordan E. Rosenfeld Read more
Learn how adjective and adverbs create redundancy and promote lazy writing and see how you can make your writing direct, vivid, and descriptive without making your readers want to get rid of your book.
by William Noble
NaNoWriMo’s Chris Baty shares five tips for writing your book in a month.
by Chris Baty Read more
How many times have you heard this around the workshop table: “Why don’t you consider a new point of view?” (Actually, the term used more often is “POV” because it sounds a lot cooler, I suspect.) Everyone then agrees that a new POV might help matters, including the writer, who knew something was wrong and is now relieved to have a likely suspect.
by Steve Almond Read more
A veteran suspense-fiction author shares nine killer tricks to help you improve a genre that can be difficult to master.
by Simon Wood Read more
Read "Principles of Building of a Story" from From First Draft to Finished Novel. Read more