Sunday, 17 June 2012

Intriguing Thrillers and Scary Chillers


Misty or ghostly intrigue??
I just love this word. It conjures up a misty twilight kind of world for me as I associate it with mystery and skulduggery. Almost a Sherlock Holmes-kind of world in my mind…
Maybe that is why I tend to think of it as a kind of old fashioned word which is rather less used nowadays. It suggests a halfway stage between outright puzzling questions and curious, rather vague, passing fascination with something or other.
When I looked ‘intrigue’ up in the dictionary, I found it can in fact mean a puzzle or questionable scheme. But interestingly it can also mean conspiracy, double dealing, trickery and even, of course an affair. An old fashioned affair/liaison was often called an intrigue.
I think the word could also be used when referring to the questions that a writer poses at the beginning of a stroy to get the reader hooked into the tale. In writing thrillers it is unquestionably the raising of interesting questions and mini puzzles of the ‘will he/won’t he succeed’ variety that make up the entire plot of an 'edge of your seat' thriller. In other words the story must intrigue the reader from start to finish and that intrigue should rise to full on tension as the conflicts escalate and the hero get’s into worse and worse trouble.
So when I write my thrillers, I start with some intriguing questions (enough to pique reader interest, I hope) and pose some attention-grabbing dilemmas but then things get rough!
A good dollop of skulduggery helps as does some trickery on the part of the villain. Together with a large spoonful of double dealing and a splash of romance you have the recipe for a darned good roller coaster read.

Do you use the word 'intrigue' in your writing? Are you often in a state of intrigue when reading?


  1. I love the word 'intrigue,' but I don't use it often. Perhaps I should rethink.

  2. Argh! I just lost my comment! Okay, here goes (abbreviated version): I usually don't think much about intrigue. :)

  3. That's such a great word isn't it? You're right, it isn't used that much anymore. But I think it is definitely something to shoot for in our work. Perhaps it will make our books more appealing and set them apart!

  4. nice posting.. thanks for sharing.