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Mary Eason | The Dark Side of Writing Dark, Romantic Suspense

April 15, 2010

MARY EASONSHADOW GAMESDo you ever wonder what it would be like to look into the mind of a killer?

What would you do if a killer were hunting you? What if you’re child was the target? What if the killer was someone you knew?

To quote Friedrich Nietzsche:

He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.

In SILENT WITNESS, my Cerridwen Press release, the killer was someone who loved the story’s heroine, Faith McKenzie obsessively, and was willing to do anything to make her his, even if it meant killing her to keep her from belonging to anyone else.

Ask any author who writes dark romantic suspense and they’ll tell you, it ain’t no walk in the park at times.

I think even for writers who create fictitious killers it’s still disturbing to consider that there are really such depraved people living in the world amongst us. To make a believable killer you have to do your homework.

For me, I love to watch Forensic Files and 48 Hours Mystery on TV. You can gain a great deal of knowledge simply by studying old case files. So why do people kill? Well, most psychologists will tell you there are two fundamental reasons someone will take another life. Love and money.

Both truly are the root of all evil. But there is another type of killer that is far more evil and cunning than all others. He’s extremely intelligent, he can blend into society well enough to be the neighbor next door, the unassuming man at work, the grocery delivery boy, and he lacks anything resembling a conscience. He’s a sociopath known as the serial killer. He kills for the thrill of it.

In DON’T CLOSE YOUR EYES, my first release from Cerridwen Press, my heroine, Megan Beaumont’s psychic powers allowed her to witness the unimaginable pain inflicted by the Angel of Death serial killer on his victims, and it almost cost Megan her life when she became the Angel’s final victim.

The FBI estimates that today there are some 50 active serial killers working among us in the US alone. That’s a frightening statistic to consider.

In ROOT OF ALL EVIL, my latest release from Cerridwen Press, my heroine, Anna Sorenson comes face to face with a serial killer like none other. Anna tries to escape his deadly trap. She walks from everything to gain redemption. But she doesn’t quite leave the past behind and as Anna soon learns, even in paradise evil still exists.

But I think I would be remiss if I left out another type of killer. The one who kills not for money, not for the love of another human, but for the love of a cause. I’m talking about the terrorist who justifies killing innocent victims in the name of patriotism.

In SHADOW GAMES. my latest release through Champagne Books, my heroine, Rachel Weiss, thought she’d left the shadowy world of espionage behind three years earlier until she received a text message from a stranger asking her if she knows where her former partner and lover Booth Tanner is. In an instant, Rachel is unwillingly plunged back into the murky world of danger an intrigue.

For me, writing about the dark side of romance is both rewarding and challenging. The characters leave their mark on you and make it hard to move on to the next story. And if they’re really chilling, they make it hard to sleep with the lights off at night.

All the best…
Mary Eason

Mary Eason writes both contemporary romances and dark, romantic suspense. Her latest release, Shadow Games, is available through Champagne Books.

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