Who is this Thea chick anyway? #thriller #fiction

my hero: Alice MunroOnce upon a time, I thought I was a litfic writer. Tough sell, I know. I’m no where the caliber of writer that Margaret Atwood is or my fav: Alice Munro. Jane Urquhart? No way. So I assumed I was just a bad litfic writer.

It took me a long time to figure out my preferred writing genre was psychological thriller. Once I understood that the label meant character driven stories where the ‘thrill’ just happens to be some pretty interesting mind play, I was confident in labelling myself. Characters resolve conflicts that are more mental than physical; more internal than external: some aspect of themselves is in conflict with another. If the conflict is character against character, it’s often in an arena where one is trying to destroy the other’s emotional state.

To me, that’s life, baby.

Here straight from wiki  is a good description of the genre I write in for you edification:

  • Psychological – Elements that are related to the mind or processes of the mind; they are mental rather than physical in nature. Sometimes the suspense comes from within one solitary character where characters must resolve conflicts with their own minds. Usually, this conflict is an effort to understand something that has happened to them. These conflicts are made more vivid with physical expressions of the conflict in the means of either physical manifestations, or physical torsions of the characters at play.
  • Thriller – Generally, thrillers focus on plot over character, and thus emphasize intense, physical action over the character’s psyche. Psychological thrillers tend to reverse this formula to a certain degree, emphasizing the characters just as much, if not more so, than the plot.
  • Psychological thriller – Characters are no longer reliant on physical strength to overcome their brutish enemies (which is often the case in typical action-thrillers), but rather are reliant on their mental resources, whether it be by battling wits with a formidable opponent or by battling for equilibrium in the character’s own mind. The suspense created by psychological thrillers often comes from two or more characters preying upon one another’s minds, either by playing deceptive games with the other or by merely trying to demolish the other’s mental state

What genre do you write in and where can we find your books?


Thea Atkinson is a writer of character driven fiction.

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5 comments on “Who is this Thea chick anyway? #thriller #fiction
  1. […] not everyone knows me, knows my style, knows what kinds of things drive my characters. What is character driven fiction anyway? That’s what some of you wonder. Well, I’ve got a […]

  2. Deb says:

    Nothing published yet, but I’ve written a four-part series that falls somewhere between women’s fiction, romance and post-YA. I would think those aren’t big deal genre-cross overs, but they seem to be problematic in the agent/publishing house search.

  3. I find genre an interesting but stifling concept.

    IMy first successful book, Sugar & Spice (co-authored with Saffina Desforges) just happens to be a psychological crime thriller.

    Our next book, Rose Red Book 1: Snow White will be hitting Kindle in July, and is the first of a crime thriller series which mixes action, psychological and police procedural.

    But our third book, due out in October, is an urban dark fantasy thriller.

    We have plenty more of those in the pipeline, but we also have WIPs ranging from lit fic through historical fiction, YA, childrens, non-fiction and myriad other genres.
    In the new world of epublishing we don’t have to paint ourselves into genre corners any more. The gatekeepers are not dictating what we will write to meet their preconceived sales market two years down the line.

    I’m not a crime writer or a thriller writer or a children’s author.

    It’s Mark Williams, writer.

    • theaatkinson says:


      As Dr. Seuss says, “I like the thinks you think.” Genre is a nasty necessary thing for categorizing on sales sites, but it is suffocating for writers who like to cross platforms. Amen to your words, and AMEN!

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All Thea's novels are available on Kindle, Nook, Sony, and Kobo

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