I'm excited to have Dawn back on the blog, and even more excited about her upcoming book IF YOU WRONG US. Dawn broke on to the YA scene in 2013 with THE CUTTING ROOM FLOOR (Flux) and now she's back with another thriller just in time for Halloween! While you're here checking out her writing tips guest post, be sure to check out the awesome giveaway!
About The Book
If You Wrong Us
Author: Dawn Klehr
Publisher: Flux | Release Date: October 8, 2015
Length: 240 Pages | ISBN: 9780738745992
Becca and Johnny become entangled after a car crash steals the lives of two people they love. Officially, the crash is an accident. But Becca and Johnny are convinced: someone did this.
As they plot revenge against the person responsible, a bond—intense, unyielding, and manic—takes hold of them. And in an unexpected turn of events, they fall for each other.
Or so they think.
In an upside-down world where decay is beautiful and love and hate become one, Becca and Johnny find themselves grappling with reality. Nothing is exactly what it seems, including what they've come to believe about the crash. Question is: will they learn the truth before it's too late?
No. The question is: when they learn the truth, will they care?
If You Wrong Us is “an intricate psychological page-turner that explores the darker side of vengeance and reads like *Gone Girl* through a teen lens.” - Kirkus Reviews.
5 Tips For Writing Thrillers
This is an awesome topic, Amber! Thanks so much for having me!
Writing thrillers is so much fun, I can’t tell you. But it has its own nuances and quirks to it. Of course you need to be mindful about how you want to get into the story: is it the character who is going to drive it? Or is it more setting or plot driven?
You also need to have a strong sense of good and evil, even if the lines blur. And you have to keep the readers turning the page. But the five things I’ve learned along the way?
#1 – Plotting is key, especially if you write like I do and want to surprise your reader.
#2 – I never know the ending until I get there. And sometimes, I get it wrong. My editor had me create a new ending for If You Wrong Us, because he could see something I missed. All the nuggets were there, but I didn’t see it until he pointed it out. Now, it is so much better.
#3 – Because I don’t know the ending until I get there, I have to write forward and backward. I don’t think there is a way that I could get a thriller done in one draft. In fact, my favorite part is going back through and dropping in clues and red herrings.
#4 – I need the tools—you know, the ticking clock, cliffhangers, the twists and turns, reliable and unreliable narrators, change in location, and high/changing stakes.
#5 – There’s magic to it, I’m sure of it. There are things that come together that you’d never imagine as you’re writing. But then you go back, and it’s like the whole story was there all along, you just had to dig it up.
Crazy, but true.
About Dawn Klehr
Dawn Klehr is the author of the young adult thrillers: The Cutting Room Floor and If You Wrong Us.
She began her career in TV news and though she’s been on both sides of the camera, she prefers to lurk behind the lens. Mostly, she loves to get lost in stories – in film, the theater, or on the page – and is a sucker for both the sinister and the sappy. She’s currently channeling her dark side as she works on her next book.
Dawn lives in the Twin Cities with her funny husband, adorable son, and naughty dog. You can find her at: www.dawnklehrbooks.com, @dawnklehr, or www.facebook.com/dawnklehrauthor.
One (1) lucky grand prize winner will receive a $25 Gift Card for Amazon or B&N (winner’s choice) and two (2) runner-ups will win an eBook copy of Dawn’s young adult psychological thriller The Cutting Room Floor!