When starting to write my historical romance, Hopelessly, Completely, MADLY in Love, I choose the year 1876 for a simple enough reason. It’s the hundred-year anniversary of the independence of America. I ended up not mentioning this significant fact, because my character, Lexi Donovan, was dealing with some trying issues when the celebration would have rolled around.
To increase suspense in a scene where a dangerous person is about to do something nasty, slow down the pace and describe their hands. This is perfect for when the evil overlord signs the order to exterminate the children, or when the torturer readies his instruments.
This technique works especially well in thrillers. Show the killer’s (or the suspect’s) hands, especially when the point-of-view character is helpless to do anything. This will send creepy shivers across the reader’s skin.
Tension is good. It makes the reader turn the pages. However, constant high tension soon gets dull. The readers can’t sustain continuous scared excitement, and after a while, instead of roused, they become bored.
It’s like the waves on a stormy sea: the peaks are only high because of the troughs between them. If there were only continuous peaks without any troughs, the sea would be flat.
Your job as writer is to create not just the peaks, but the troughs which make the peaks look high.
‘Here’s my MTW review of Gavin Mills‘ adrenaline-rush of a thriller: Dup Departs…’
‘If you like thrillers involving gangsters, guns, drugs, corruption and action
this book is for you…’
These are comments on Dup Departs by two great writers for Mystery Thriller Week and I am blown away.
I am so glad people like Dup – because a lot of Dup is me, or was me …or something like that. But that’s not the point. Dup is like most anybody, just doing his best to lead an uncomplicated life and provide for his family. And things are not easy… There comes that time when one starts thinking whether he keeps pressing on or finds other cheese (sorry – had to borrow). Haven’t we all gone through that at some time? Is our life worth anything, are we doing what we love, …or are we missing out on life?
In fiction, three is a magic number: Three-Act Structure, Beginning-Middle-End, Three Plot Points, and Goal-Conflict-Resolution. Three is everywhere and must be grappled with by authors at every turn.
Mystery Thriller Week celebrates this intriguing phenomenon of three and invites you to submit a 300-word hook that will showcase your flexed writing muscle. A hook is what grabs the reader and snares him into reading the rest of a book. While there are many hooks throughout a book, this contest will focus on what should be the first page of a novel.
We want to read your best Write Hook! Enter Below!
- 1st place winner receives written professional feedback of their 300-word submission and their choice of a Writer’s Craft series e-book from Rayne Hall, and an eBook Cover Design and Kindle Formatting from Eeva Lancaster, owner of The Book Khaleesi, and publication of their Write Hook submission on the Mystery Thriller Week website;
- 2nd place winner receives their choice of a Rayne Hall Writer’s Craft Series e-book and a Mystery Thriller Week 2017 limited edition T-shirt, and publication of their Write Hook submission on the Mystery Thriller Week website;
- 3rd place winner receives their choice of a Rayne Hall Writer’s Craft Series e-book and a Mystery Thriller Week 2017 limited edition book bag, and publication of their Write Hook submission on the Mystery Thriller Week website.
Mystery Thriller Week 2017 has a surprise for you when all the hard work of NaNoWriMo screeches to a halt and is a distant memory. A completely free online MTW scheduled for February 12th – 22nd next year will help keep you motivated to crank out that final Work In Progress you started in November. This is your personal ticket for a unique opportunity to connect with both new and award-winning published authors, writing specialists, story coaches, editors, publishers, bloggers focused on reviewing books, vloggers, podcasters promoting the craft of writing, filmmakers, and numerous fans itching to learn more about the Mystery Thriller genre.