Optimize Us by Maria Kelson

Story of the Month: Optimize Us by Maria Kelson

  The Strand’s Story of the Month for April is Optimize Us by Maria Kelson, featured in Down to the River, a new anthology of crime fiction from Down and Out Books. With classic elements of suspense and a twist of android fiction, Kelson will have you guessing until the end.   Optimize Us by Maria Kelson I […]

harlan-coben

Crafting Parallel Narratives: An Interview With Harlan Coben

  For the past 28 years, Harlan Coben has been providing readers with a welcome mix of suspense, humor, and razor-sharp storytelling. His newest novel, Run Away, revolves around Simon Greene, a Wall Street financial advisor who hasn’t seen his drug-addicted daughter, Paige, in six months. When he finally finds her again, she’s nearly unrecognizable, […]

suspense tree

Joseph Finder on the Element of Surprise

Suspense writer Joseph Finder examines the art of twists and shocking endings as he discusses the element of surprise in five novels with endings he never saw coming.   There’s a paradox to being a suspense writer. We writers get into this business because we love reading—but the more we read, the more we write, […]

bible of bad men william boyle

A Bible of Bad Men and Other Mob Tales

After growing up hearing mob tales and names from the Five Families, William Boyle reflects on what drew him to the mob genre and inspired some of his projects, such as his newest novel A Friend Is a Gift You Give Yourself. I grew up on the border of Bensonhurst and Gravesend in Brooklyn, and the […]

fiction writing photo

Can Good Writing Be Taught?

To celebrate the release of her newest novel, Last Night, Karen Ellis reflects on what makes great fiction writing and how to discover and unleash the voice within. It’s an old question and generally the answer is “No.” And yet I’ve been teaching creative writing for twenty-five years—teaching, or leading, workshops in basic fiction writing, suspense, […]

true event fiction

A True Event Can Make Riveting Fiction

A True Event Can Make Riveting Fiction  Glen David Gold’s novel Carter Beats the Devil (2001) opens with President Warren G. Harding gamely getting up on stage in a San Francisco theater to participate in a conjuring trick. Hours later, he’s dead. Were the two events connected? Suddenly the conjurer—the real-life Joseph Carter, a household name in […]

James Crumley in Print (and Now on Screen?)

James Crumley in Print (and Now on Screen?)

James Crumley in Print (and Now on Screen?) The recent rumors that Mel Gibson is looking to adapt the 1983 novel Dancing Bear by James Crumley for television is exciting news. Gibson, the force behind 2016’s Hacksaw Ridge, is in talks with Chinatown (1974) screenwriter Robert Towne and Black Swan (2010) producer Mike Medavoy to bring […]

Thirst: On Writing, Harry, & Flying Jumbo Jets by Jo Nesbø

Thirst: On Writing, Harry, & Flying Jumbo Jets by Jo Nesbø (Excerpts)

What am I thinking when I set out to write a book? First of all, I think it’s impossible. It’s impossible to transform my thoughts and feelings into letters that can convey them to a reader without losing most of—and the most important parts of—their meaning. And it’s definitely  impossible for these vague, sound-mimicking symbols to […]

The Legacy of Raymond Chandler (Part II)

The Legacy of Raymond Chandler Part II A ‘Lost’ Generation, Found: Raymond Chandler’s Legacy Although physical violence and brutality have always existed as important facets of crime fiction, the early pioneers of the genre created a style of writing in which acts of violence came to symbolize the ugliness and unpredictability of society. In his […]

The Legacy of Raymond Chandler

The Legacy of Raymond Chandler (Part I)

The Legacy of Raymond Chandler A ‘Lost’ Generation, Found: Raymond Chandler’s Legacy Many 20th-century writers, particularly in the post-Vietnam era, cite Raymond Chandler as one of their main influences. Inspired by his self-consciousness within the genre and his desire to understand and explore the confines of the form, contemporary writers took their lead from Chandler’s […]

Why is Sherlock Holmes so Popular? Ratiocination Rules!

Why is Sherlock Holmes so Popular? Ratiocination Rules! Readers of The Strand Magazine can be in no doubt that this publication’s most famous “son” is riding high in the popularity stakes at the moment. We live in a time when there are perhaps more incarnations of, and homages to, Sherlock Holmes than ever before: the […]

The Women of Summer Suspense

The Women of Summer Suspense

The Women of Summer Suspense Forget the boys of summer—it’s the women of suspense who are packing some serious heat this season of the sunscreen. First up is Megan Abbott’s highly anticipated You Will Know Me (Little, Brown and Company), a penetrating glimpse into the world of competitive gymnastics. Katie and Eric Knox have sacrificed […]