Good writer vs great storytellers of mystery and thrillers

Good writer vs. great storytellers of mystery and thrillers


*After Henry’s death, Elizabeth vowed to find his murderer. Blah, blah, blah.

For me some stories start out the same. By the first page, you already know how it’s going to turn out, same story as the last mystery murder book you read. I enjoy twist and turns. Within the first page, grab me with something that will blow me away and make me turn the page.

By the second page, give me an unanswered question that I won’t want to put the book down until I know the answer.

By the third page pull me into the life of a person, allow me to feel the emotion of what that person is feeling.

By the forth page make the movie reels in my mind play out the scenes with descriptive visions, senses and awareness of what is happening with characters and their surroundings.

If the first page of a book I open reads like the above sentence*, I might put it back down but if it’s changed a little differently, more interesting I’ll keep reading.

After Elizabeth killed Henry, she vowed to erase his remains, as if Henry never existed. In the elaborate scheme of planning the meal for the other executives she cooked up what some people thought was the most delicious meal yet.

Fleshless bones become the ashes to fire. She thought as she raised her glass for the final toast of the evening.

I would keep reading this story. Why? Because for one, women who kill don’t cook their victims for others to enjoy and for another I want to know why she would do such a manic crime. Plus as much as it sounds like a gross thriller, it also sounds more interesting than the same old murder mystery. What made her kill Henry and why would she cook him and serve him to apparently well to do executives?

Who is Henry and what did he do to Elizabeth? Even if someone else killed Henry, from the first above sentence, and Elizabeth wanted to find his murderer, we already know there were a crime and a person of interest. So there for the investigation begins. Questions, people places to visit. It can all be interesting if you enjoy a repeat of the same crime drama elements.

There are so many ways to take an age-old mystery and change it to a more interesting page turning, nail biting thriller. Don’t let the ending of a great story be predictable at the beginning of a good story.



T. Wharton Johnson Author of  The Eye of Lies and other short stories.


Writing Prompts that inspire

writing prompt

I love these writing prompts from iAuthor on Twitter. It’s true a picture can tell a thousand words so when given the inspiration of a photo to write the first line, or maybe the middle or end of a story, the juices flow for the insanely sick minds of writers. Lol. A fun way to start the day. Watch out world my mind is open now and ready to create a horror of events. #awritersworld #loveit

Here’s my first line for the picture prompt:

As I awoke from under my bed, I realized the sound of the beating heart wasn’t mine.

The end of the beginning




Life doesn’t start at the end, so why am I compelled to write from the end? I don’t know the story, the beginning hasn’t started and the middle is nowhere in sight. But the end, the end is interesting, intriguing and yet, the beginning can’t develop until the end.

A person’s life has to start from infancy but a story is different. A story can start from anywhere the writer wants the reader to begin. Confused? Me too. It’s like watching the end of a movie before watching the beginning. We’ve seen a few movies like that where the ending is shown before the movie starts to keep the watcher watching to see what happened in order to get to that point of the end. Follow me?

For me as a writer the end is the beginning of where I start a new story. I write backwards, from the end to the middle to the beginning. Sometimes I mix it up. I’ll write a chapter and either follow it by the next chapter or write something which leads up to the chapter I just wrote. It’s the way my mixed up brain functions in the world of fiction. I have those annoying finger tapping characters whispering to me at night. The floors creek beneath their buoyant glow as they dare my eyes to shut and sleep prevails. Wick emotions pray upon my dreams snatching the rest that’s much needed, so I rise. Their demands of a captivating story to reveal the evil intents of a twisted end, daring the reader to turn the page before darkness, the delusions real, and the hair on the nape of their neck salute the shadowy figure, which rest quietly behind them. Cool air escaping the pinched translucent lips of what once was a fleshed human.



T. Wharton Johnson is the author of The Eye of Lies and other short stories.

Watched by a ghost

 10409206_10207660953351280_7659900991420311706_n (236x420)

Living among the dead.

We all know ghostly spirits are out there, but do they know they are dead?

I have always believed in ghost after an experience as a child and later as a teen and adult but I’ve never caught an image on camera such as this one. While waiting on the school bus with my grandkids the other morning I had the eerie feeling we weren’t alone, it wasn’t the first time I had taken a picture in the dark at the same spot but this was bone chilling.

The other pictures were mere floating dust particles and a red eye from a rabbit. This picture however looks to be that of a person leaning on their hand staring at us. (The picture taken from the driver seat, over the dash to the right.) I enhanced the picture in a blue hue so it can be seen better. Some people, paranormal investigators as well, have said it looks like a woman with dark hair. Her hand to her chin, you can almost see fingertips and others have said it looks like a person with their head titled slightly in the same position, with their hand to their chin, the other arm lying on top of the hood of the car. There were three photos taken at the time of this image, the other two images showed nothing. Once the bus came, I hurried back up the driveway and into the house, where I shut and locked the door. Chills crept up my spine the rest of the day. The next morning I embraced the kids, along with a bb gun for protection. Okay don’t laugh my bb gun is powerful and loud, not that it would hurt the ‘thing’ but I felt safe.

As for the body buried under the house, well…, that reminds to be “seen,” I for one don’t want to conjure up any more evils that already exist on the property.