My Q&A with Mystery People about thriller writing and Phantom Instinct

Recently I did a Q & A with the Mystery People blog. (Mystery People is the bookstore within a bookstore at Book People in Austin. Don’t try to figure it out. It’s like Inception. Just trust me that it’s awesome.) The interview talks both about Phantom Instinct and about writing thrillers. Here’s a teaser.

Mystery People Q & A with Meg Gardiner

Molly O.: Your two main characters, Harper and Aiden, are hobbled in their pursuit of justice by Harper’s past as a juvenile delinquent and Aiden’s traumatic brain injury, which leads him to see enemies everywhere. Their flaws drew me in to their characters much more so than any of their more heroic attributes, especially in the case of Aiden. What was your inspiration for creating such flawed characters?

Meg Gardiner: I want to write about characters who have their backs up against the wall. For a novel to be suspenseful, the characters must be vulnerable to real danger. If they have no flaws, no limitations, then they face no real challenge. That story’s boring.

Even Superman has Kryptonite.

The only real way to find out what characters are made of is to crack their world in half. Then you learn whether they can fight their way clear of the debris, rescue people who need help, and rebuild from the wreckage.

Plenty more at the link.

Also: Phantom Instinct is on the Mystery People interviewer’s Best Of list. Molly’s Top 10 of the Year So Far.

Which is mighty nice.

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