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Confessions of a Thriller Author: Writing the Kill Scene

I hope everyone had a great Christmas! I received two great gifts. First, ALL GOOD DEEDS (Lucy Kendall #1) is the January Book of the Month for a major thrillers group on Goodreads. Very excited about that! My second gift isn’t just for myself – it’s for all of us! SEE THEM RUN (Lucy Kendall #2) is now available! Click the cover to grab your copy!


Now, on to today’s confession: my favorite scenes to write are the kill scenes. That’s when Lucy Kendall eradicates her twisted form of justice. She’s got two of those scenes in SEE THEM RUN, and one in particular was a lot of fun to write.

First off, the dude she is killing is a bad guy, and the world is better off without him. But that’s just surface stuff. What made the scene truly fun was the organic evolution of her character. I’d planned on her to go darker eventually, but this happened on its own. Her mind and body reacted in ways I hadn’t anticipated, and she become more calculating. Even more, she started to enjoy killing. Only for a moment, but the seed was planted. As a plotter, I love it when a character takes off on their own tangent and surprises me!

As for the killing part, it’s not the act but the representation. Lucy Kendall can never go back from this one. She can’t convince herself she’s only doing this for the greater good and whatever lies she’s told herself. A small part of her knows she killed a man because she wanted to, and that part is looking forward to doing it all over again.

For me, moments like this one are one of the most rewarding. I stop worrying about the story and all the big picture issues and just let the writing take hold. It’s a precious gift when that happens, and I look forward to the next time.

Just for fun, this song was on repeat as I wrote the kill scene (RIP Kurt):

Authors, what scenes are you most proud of this year? Readers, do you have a favorite scene to share?

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