Now Write! Mysteries: Suspense, Crime, Thriller, and Other Mystery Fiction Exercises from Today's Best Writers and Teachers

Now Write! Mysteries: Suspense, Crime, Thriller, and Other Mystery Fiction Exercises from Today's Best Writers and Teachers

by Sherry Ellis, Laurie Lamson


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The essential handbook for writers of whodunits, techno- thrillers, cozies, and everything in between-featuring never-before- published personal writing exercises from some of today's bestselling and award-winning mystery writers.

Now Write! Mysteries, the fourth volume in the acclaimed Now Write! writing guide series, brings together numerous bestselling authors-including winners of and nominees for the Edgar, Hugo, and Shamus awards,-for the definitive guide to writing mysteries, thrillers, and suspense stories. Now Write! Mysteries teaches you everything you've ever wanted to know about crafting a page-turning mystery-from creating a believable detective hero (or terrifying villain), to using real-life cutting-edge investigative techniques to bring your story to life-with practical exercises taken directly from the pros:

  • Discover the best techniques for seamlessly integrating action into your story with John Lutz, New York Times-bestselling author of Urge to Kill, Night Kills,and Serial.
  • Learn how to fine-tune your sense of place and setting with Louise Penny, New York Times-bestselling author of the Armand Gamache mysteries.
  • Take advice from Lorenzo Carcaterra, author of Sleepers and writer/producer for Law & Order, on how to compose a scene that lives up to your character's backstory.
  • Let Marcia Talley, Agatha- and Anthony-winning author of the Hannah Ives mysteries, show you how to build a memorable, engaging detective. (Hint: It's not about making him flawless.)
Others included are: Simon Brett, Hallie Ephron, Meg Gardiner, Peter James, Christopher G. Moore, Michael Sears, and many others. No other mystery-writing guide offers the road tested wisdom of so many award-winners and bestselling authors in one place.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal

This is the newest in Ellis's "Now Write!" series; previous entries contain fiction, nonfiction, and screenwriting exercises. When Ellis passed away unexpectedly, Lamson, her niece and coeditor for Now Write! Screenplays, finished the book with a moving dedication to her aunt. While the other series volumes have a general scope, this title takes a more specific view. Topics include how to plot thrillers, create realistic detectives and villains, and write suspenseful crime scenes. The chapters are divided by subject; each is written by a published mystery and/or crime author (some concepts, such as "setting as character," are presented by multiple authors). Sections like Meg Gardiner's "Ratcheting Up the Suspense" focus on thrillers, while others, like Jane K. Cleland's "Avoiding Saggy Middles," can be applied to general fiction. Each chapter offers writing exercises to help readers put knowledge into practice. VERDICT The bulk of the content focuses on the craft of crime writing, and research strategies are mentioned in brief. Recommended for beginning writers of fiction.—Karen McCoy, Northern Arizona Univ. Lib., Flagstaff

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781585429035
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 12/29/2011
Pages: 384
Sales rank: 502,662
Product dimensions: 5.56(w) x 8.52(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

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