Resources for Mystery/Suspense Writers

We’ve been talking about the mystery/suspense genre lately, and I wanted to bring you a quick little list of blogs* that will be of interest to those of you who write them, or think you might like to write them. These sites provide procedural tips—and also good ideas, jumping-off points for your next great plot.

Kill Zone
Billed as a doorway into the mind of thriller/mystery writers’ minds, the Kill Zone is a daily blog from eleven top thriller and mystery authors covering topics that inspire, anger, amuse, and entertain. So not exclusively about mysteries, but always about writing. (Contributors: Clare Langley-Hawthorne, Boyd Morrison, Kathryn Lilley, P. J. Parrish, Joe Moore, Nancy Cohen, Jordan Dane, Elaine Viets, Joe Hartlaub, Mark Alpert, and James Scott Bell.) I love this blog but really don’t like the white text on black, as I find it difficult to read. Do check the blogroll.

The Graveyard Shift by Lee Lofland
Lee Lofland is a veteran police investigator who began his law-enforcement career working as an officer in Virginia’s prison system. He later became a sheriff’s deputy, a patrol officer, and then detective. He has hands-on experience, and now he writes novels—and blogs. He also offers manuscript review for technical accuracy regarding law enforcement matters, police procedures, and crime scene investigations. Check his blogroll.

Defrosting Cold Cases
Defrosting Cold Cases was set up by Alice de Sturler—a former human rights defender/educator—to get more media attention for the victims of unsolved homicides. Through blogging and social media she has been able to shine a new light on these old cases. These are real-life cases chock-full of detail. Another good blogroll too.

The Writer’s Forensics Blog
D. P. Lyle is the Macavity Award–winning and Edgar, Agatha, Scribe, and USA Best Book Award–nominated author of both non-fiction and fiction as well as story consultant to many novelists and the screenwriters of shows such as Law & Order, CSI: Miami, Monk, Judging Amy, House, Medium, Pretty Little Liars, and many more. Lyle answers questions and comments on cases and procedures.

The Character Therapist
An online therapy service for fictional characters. Great idea! Jeannie Campbell is a licensed marriage and family therapist who uses her professional training and experience to evaluate and diagnose fictional characters. You can pay for a personal consultation or just check out the many case histories on the blog.

Redwood’s Medical Edge
This is billed as “medical facts for your fiction,” written by an RN who was worked ER or ICU for twenty years, though she is also careful with her disclaimer that the information is presented for writers to use in their works of fiction. She encourages questions, which show up as blog posts, three-plus per week. She hasn’t fleshed out some of her other pages (they have “coming soon” notices) but even so, there’s lots here.

Eyes for Lies
This woman is a professional deception and credibility expert. The science here is certain people are able to spot deception with pinpoint accuracy. Sure, they read body language, and you do, too, but these folks are really, really good at it—they have a gift. There are clear clues to human deception; when people are under high stress situations and they are deceptive, subconscious clues leak out that tell the real story. Check out her track record—but don’t check in unless you have an afternoon to lose, because this is absolutely fascinating stuff.

Murder Is Everywhere
The subtitle here is “Seven renowned crime writers blog from different corners of the world”: Annamaria Alfieri (South America); Carla Black (France); Lisa Brackmann (China); Leighton Gage (Brazil); Caro Ramsay (Scotland); Jeff Siger (Greece); Yrsa Sigurdardóttir (Iceland); and Michael Sears and Stanley Trollip (Southern Africa). Which is, actually, eight, but I’ll not quibble. :) Another interesting blogroll too.

All Things Crime
From Los Angeles PI and crime writer Patrick H. Moore, this blog declares crime is a certainty in life, and discusses both true crime and fictional crime, which reflects Moore’s interests. It’s a “rich landscape of endless possibility” for writers, he says, and is diligent presenting current stories.

Seriously, a person with a curious mind could fall into these blogs and not come out for hours. You’ve been warned. :)

* Mystery writer Ramona Richards helped me out with the bulk of this list, for which I am truly grateful.

UPDATE: There’s more on this subject here.

 

Tweet: A person with a curious mind could fall into these blogs and not come out for hours. You’ve been warned.
Tweet: Here’s a quick little list of blogs that will be of interest to those of you who write mysteries.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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2 Comments

  1. […] The Graveyard Shift.  Written by a veteran police investigator. From his site, I learned that real cops don’t use the word perp and that at the crime scene, the ME can’t tell the time the victim died. Super Helpful! […]

  2. Thank you for the excellent list, and for including The Kill Zone! Sorry about the white on black issue–we were going to change it last year, but many readers said they liked the theme, so we kept it. I’ll remind our team to use a large font, which makes it easier to read.

One Trackback

  1. […] The Graveyard Shift.  Written by a veteran police investigator. From his site, I learned that real cops don’t use the word perp and that at the crime scene, the ME can’t tell the time the victim died. Super Helpful! […]

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