Good Friday afternoon!
How are you? I am whipped. This week has been physically and emotionally exhausting – two days of the outside world (including a 3 floor library! Totally orgasmic), and a fight in the family that cut me to the quick.
I plan on doing mostly sit-down work today and I really want to put my feet in the lake. The weather is incredibly hot and humid this week and it’s draining.
It is only 57 days to NaNo!
I mentioned way back before June that Wolfman challenged me to write a thriller. The challenge came with the following criteria:
- No paranormal anything.
- Can’t go back any further than the cold war.
- It must include: an ex-bounty hunter cowboy, ninjas and a Mexican super assassin who happens to be a midget with an eyepatch.
The last is his payback for me making him include pink and penguins (and ships but that’s normal, eh?) in the challenge I gave him.
I have never written a thriller. I’ve written violent, erotic romances with some thriller elements but an actual thriller? No, not if you look at the definition.
- a novel, play, or movie with an exciting plot, typically involving crime or espionage.
- Thriller is a genre of literature, film, videogame stories and television programming that uses suspense, tension, and excitement as its main elements. Thrillers heavily stimulate the viewer’s moods, giving them a high level of anticipation, ultra-heightened expectation, uncertainty, surprise, anxiety and terror.
According to Daily Writing tips, a thriller is a story where the “protagonist is in danger from the outset.”
In another article I read, either the prologue or first chapter is from the antagonist’s point of view and it shows you why the protagonist is in danger.
I also had to look at the difference between a mystery and a thriller.
Writer’s Digest says, “A mystery follows an intellectual protagonist who puts together clues to solve a crime after it’s been committed, and a thriller details the prevention of a crime before it has been committed.”
That seems to fly in the face of the antagonist committing a crime or action that sets the pace and gives the reason for the protagonist’s danger. However, I do like it for defining the difference.
In any case, now I know what a thriller is. I need to figure out how to thriller.
I am studying that today. However, it would be helpful to have some idea of a plot, of a reason for the danger. I’m hoping that developing my characters will help with that.
So far, I have Theodore “Ted” Terwilliger, a bounty hunter of some kind (Federal? Still researching it) turned cowboy. He had a wife and a little boy, (who pretended he was a ninja almost all the time, thank you TMNT), that were murdered because of ….well, I don’t know what yet.
Ted is 6’1″ and built like a linebacker. Broad shoulders, well-muscled chest and abdomen. Strong, muscular arms and legs. Sensuous mouth, strong jaw, red-gold hair, green eyes. A lumpy nose, from being broken many times, large scarred hands. He’s got a scar just under his ribs on his right side from a bail skipper stabbing him and another low on the curve of his left butt cheek.
He won’t tell me what that one is for though. I am intrigued. I bet you are too. 😉
I have the Mexican, super assassin, eye-patch wearing, midget character figured out too. Partly. He’s a friend of Ted’s and his name is Carlos Montalbán. He is going to have a bionic eye implant. I want the eye to allow him to be able to choose between the lower and upper infrared spectrums.
A quick lesson (because I just learned it): The lower spectrum of infrared is what we typically think of as night vision. It’s like a cat’s eye at night, when their pupils open wide. They catch tiny amounts of light and enhance them to create a brighter picture of their surroundings. The upper spectrum is like thermal imaging – capturing heat emitted by objects and people, rather than reflected light.
I am hoping that by building the characters – the complex protagonist and equally complex antagonist as well as the other characters of varying importance – I will stumble upon a plot. A conflict at the very least.
Already, I’m thinking that Ted, in his bounty hunterness, (it’s a word…now), has done something to the antagonist, probably unintentionally. Or at least peripherally.
I am excited to share my progress with this book, this brand-new-to-me genre. I’m looking forward to the challenge.