Thrilling Structures 1: Generic Hooks for the Thriller

I’ve been playing around with the structure of my own suspense thriller novel, considering the typical hooks or starting chapters and typical climaxes also (coming up in the second post later this week).

For Hooks, here is my list so far. Like any list, any good author will try to bend or break – or add a new trope to the list, so it’s reasonably generic, and comes from my own reading in the genres. Please add any comments or suggestions, if you’re a thriller reader.

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Elements of the Psychological Thriller, Mystery, Suspense and/or Crime Fiction Genres

Last week I attempted to define some elements expected of the typical reader in a psychological thriller. Although the attempt was a good one, it left me with some problems localising the differences between what a mystery, crime fiction and thriller is.

Those thoughts were put into a large post on Mystery, Thriller and Crime fiction. In that post I realised that like a lot of writers, and a lot of experts in writing, the cross-flow between these genres provides a difficulty in localising one genre we might like our books to be catergorised into, if forced to do this on bookshelves or websites.

What came out of this, however, was a rewrite of the initial post on elements that the reader may expect. I’ve now provided a more catergorised list of elements below.  This post will be kept updated with any new ideas in the future.

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Mysteries Vs Thrillers Vs Crime Fiction

When I came to reorganise my thoughts on my previous Elements of a Psychological Thriller post, I hit the whole debate over the differences between the mystery genre and that of crime fiction / suspense and thrillers.

I believe that my own stories cross many of these genres (and sub-genres) but it’s important to get that understanding to allow the correct placement of my books in virtual (or real) bookstores, and to find the right readers.

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Write Anything’s GFC Challenge

 Write Anything has just announced the Form and Genre Challenge – a 52 week challenge to write, post and submit in a genre or writing form announced at the WA blog each Sunday. The full schedule is up for the next year and can be downloaded as a PDF for forward planning. 

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