15 September, 2019

#SpecialFeature :: #GuestPost - Planning a Crime Thriller by Moitrayee Bhaduri

*** Special Feature - September 2019 ***

About the Book:
When TV actress Shagun Seth mysteriously dies in a beauty parlour in Mumbai, her mother slams murder charges on Shagun’s banker husband Chetan Seth. Chetan’s family suspects that he is being framed and requests private detective Mili Ray to investigate. As Mili and her lawyer-associate Gatha start work, Chetan is released on bail. Soon after, Shagun’s mother is killed! Is Chetan responsible for these murders?
Mili probes deeper and unravels shocking secrets buried beneath Shagun’s world of glitz that leave her baffled. An insecure boyfriend, an estranged husband, an opportunist colleague, a cunning TV producer – Shagun was surrounded by haters. Even her 12-year-old son didn’t want to see her alive. Why did everyone hate Shagun?
While meandering through dysfunctional family upheavals and dark showbiz sagas, ex-super cop Mili also struggles to tame her own internal demons. Will she be able to solve her second case as private detective or succumb to pressure and hang up her boots?
Who Killed the Murderer? is a gripping psychological thriller that will hook you right from the first page.

Book Links:
Amazon * Goodreads

Planning a Crime Thriller

Writing a crime thriller is a lot of fun but it requires a great deal of planning. I have always admired authors who are able to churn out a book or two every year! It seems like a daunting task and those who can deliver engaging content consistently, are master storytellers. Classics penned by legends like Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Agatha Christie, Edgar Allan Poe, Patricia Highsmith, Satyajit Ray, Sharadindu Bandopadhyay, and G.K Chesterton among others, never lose their charm.

I like to plan my thrillers well and always write down an outline of each chapter, including the ending. Once I am happy with the structure, I start writing the novel. As I write and rewrite, the characters and the way they behave with one another often change and evolve into something I hadn’t imagined. As a result, the ending I had in mind changes too. For me, that’s the most exciting part of being a writer.

There are several other things to keep in mind while planning a thriller. There is no right or wrong here and every writer has their own process.

Here are a few things I keep in mind while planning my books.

The hook 

A crime writer needs to hook the readers with a fast-paced and persuasive first chapter. In today’s digital age when people have so many distractions at their fingertips, a well-written, action-packed ‘beginning’ is essential to keep the reader engaged.


While writing both my crime thrillers, I ensured that I have adequate subplots to make the narrative engaging and taut. Once the basic setting has been created, it is important to weave in subplots to the main story. The sub-stories should always take the main narrative forward and not be mere fillers. Subplots enable authors to build characters, establish motives for committing a crime, and engage readers.

Creating conflicts

Once the characters start talking to one another, there are conflicts. Stories help create conflicts and add intrigue. Readers often judge characters based on how they interact with each other. It is important to avoid stereotypes. Original characters stand out, even if they are weird and not likeable.
Twists and surprises

Complex story-threads allow the author to introduce twists that can add suspense and surprise the reader. Through a story twist, a character that your reader loved so long can become a villain. Once the reader starts abhorring this character, the author might add another twist justifying the character’s action. Readers sometimes end up empathizing with characters they dislike.

Show, don’t tell

When we have subplots in the story, it is easier to establish personality traits of the key characters. We don’t need to write sentences like ‘He was an angry, young man’ when the emotion can be established with a sub-story. 

Point of view

Stories help the author establish a point-of-view for the novel. The main protagonist who can be a detective or a law enforcement official usually unties the knots created through subplots using a point-of-view. Stories enable readers to deep-dive into the mind of the detective and connect the dots.

Nail-biting finish

If the stories within the main plot are edgy, the author can create a surprise ending, especially in a whodunit. Readers like me, who are addicted to crime-fiction, enjoy solving the case along with the fictional detective. Complex stories entwined with the main plot help authors avoid predictable endings.

To sum up

A thriller cannot be boring nor can it have suspense on every page. So, the build-up to the suspense must be exciting. An original plot, multi-faceted characters, and engaging conflicts make that possible.

Book Trailer:

About the Author
Moitrayee Bhaduri is an author, screenwriter, and content specialist. Her first book, The Sinister Silence (Srishti Publishers, 2015), is an edge-of-the-seat murder mystery that introduced the feisty private detective Mili Ray. Her second book Who Killed the Murderer? (TreeShade Books, 2019) is a fast-paced psychological thriller that revolves around the murder of a TV actress in a beauty parlour.
Moitrayee also writes screenplays for TV and freelances with IT firms as a content consultant. Before switching to a full-time writing career, she worked with organizations like IBM, Deloitte, and Oracle, among others, in various writing and people-managerial roles, for 15 years. An alumna of Loreto College and Jadavpur University, Moitrayee also has a certificate in Creative Writing from the University of Oxford.
Moitrayee enjoys conducting writing workshops for children and adults, encouraging them to cultivate a habit of reading. She is passionate about music, enjoys reviewing books and films, and loves dogs. Currently, she lives in Kolkata.

Contact the Author:
Blog * Facebook *  Twitter * Instagram * Goodreads 

Giveaway Details:
3 paperback copies of ‘Who Killed the Murderer?’ for Indian residents

a Rafflecopter giveaway