With Nanowrimo just around the corner I am preparing to once again take on a new genre. I will be doing my best to create a suspense thriller this year which, while a style I love to read, is not something I have ever attempted nor until now believed I had the ability to write. I love the sense of urgency created in suspense thrillers. The interaction between the characters as well as the slowly developing understory that bleeds into the main storyline has always been my favorite type of book.
Several months ago I was struck by an idea for a thriller while I was at work. The story was just a minor brainstorm that seemed scattered. I had a main character but sometimes she was a best selling author being haunted by an evil character, but then out of no where I had a struggling author looking to write something epic. It drove me crazy until I realized I was being talked to by two completely different characters simultaneously.
The first book was the best selling author dealing with the evil character driving her mad with horrible demands and ideas for a book. The second book was a younger woman that wanted to write an epic story but has been struggling for months. She had high expectations not only for herself but because she is the daughter of the main character from the first book. Amanda Perella was determined to live up to the same reputation her mother had built.
The problem was that she never found a character that she connected with the way her mother had. She left the city because she felt perhaps the solitude of a country house would make it easier to find her voice and hopefully connect with the characters that seemed to always elude her. She packs up everything and finds a beautiful older house along a dirt country road. There is a little pond at the end of the road and she walks her dog down by the pond every night.
A few weeks after moving to her country house she has a very vivid dream with a woman in an elaborate old house. Amanda woke up at four in the morning and began writing feverishly. She gets through the beginning of an outline but as she writes the dream begins to fade. Frustrated, she takes her dog for a walk down to the pond. As she walks she gets a resurgence of inspiration. When she gets back however her ideas again start to fade. This repeats day after day until one walk she takes in the morning and sees a delivery truck pulling away from the house at the end of the road.
She had never noticed the house before because she had always only watched her dog or looked at the water but that day it was the only thing she could focus on. The closer she got the more she realized the house was in disrepair and the yard was overgrown. The house looked abandoned but she could see the boxes that had been delivered sitting on the porch. She knocked on the door but no one answered so she looked in the windows. She gets completely taken aback when the house is the same one from her dreams. Startled she stumbled back, tripping over the boxes. She stood up and caught a glimpse of the name on the packages, it is the same as her main character.
Who is the woman in Amanda's dreams? Why is she getting images of a house she never noticed invading her thoughts. What does the woman want and is Amanda going to be able to help her?