Tag: lies


Not What You Think

Paradigm, noun: a cognitive framework Paradigm shift, noun: a dramatic change in the paradigm –Dictionary.com I’ve been reading Cop Hater by Ed McBain, written in the 1950s. It’s graphic and brutal (and reminds me why I’m not a fan of noir and gritty urban novels) and totally not what I expected in a novel written 60 years ago. I expected euphemisms and suggestion and “Leave It To Beaver”. I’ve done some research into the 1930s for an idea I have for a series and uncovered things that, again, were a lot less “genteel” than I expected. I’m sure we can all think of examples where someone wrote/directed/painted/created something we enjoyed and we later found out that person was a creep. My question for my fellow Missdemeanors: In your reading, writing research, or other area of your life, what “thing” turned out to be far different than what you thought/believed? Tracee I have an example from real life that changed my perception about the lies people tell. And, let’s face it, much (all?) of domestic suspense and mystery writing depends on the lies people tell. Here’s the real-life example: In a casual family discussion, we were remarking that my father’s grandfather […]

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The Danger Of Too Much Truth In Fiction

Thriller writers must be careful about being too honest about the extent of human depravity lest we be accused of unbelievability. In truth, human beings are capable of far more horrific behaviors than most of us thriller authors could ever write about. Today, for example, I read a story in the Washington Post about people who brutally murdered a former friend for allegedly attempting to steal their marijuana smoking device. The brothers presumed responsible made the victim consume kitty litter before posting photos of the brutal attack on snapchat, an online messaging platform. If I had a villain who I had not established was a psychopath or drug syndicate enforcer perpetrate a similar crime, I’d certainly be accused of taking too much license. How could readers believe that individuals, not under the influence of some psychosis-inducing PCP-type drug, would be so horrible to another human being, especially a person they had liked enough to invite into their home?  In my last book, The Widower’s Wife, a few readers took issue with a character sneaking back into America via a cruise ship. They said that coming into the U.S. without papers couldn’t possibly be that easy and that human smugglers wouldn’t have acted in the way that I portrayed. I had gotten much of my information for that part of […]

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