Writing a Thriller with Dan Brown

MasterClass Online Writing Tips from Dan Brown


Writing progress this weekend was like the Minnesota weather, cloudy and gloomy.   My motivation level to sit for long periods typing away in writer’s bliss didn’t happen.  I had to resort to a writing prompt and tips from well known author, Dan Brown.


Dan’s MasterClass online teaches us about writing thrillers.  I’m going to share one of the takeaways from the beginning of his class.  When it comes to elements of a good story, he uses the “Three C’s”.  No we’re not referring to gems. 


He spoke about using a “contract, clock, and crucible”.   He went on to say that he makes a promise or “contract” with his reader.  His job is to fulfill that promise to his audience.  If there’s a problem that must be solved, he solves it.


In order to solve the problem, he mixes in a “crucible”  or something that holds things together and doesn’t let them run away.  Don’t created confusion with your audience.  Keep things simple and give your hero one way out.  Your crucible should be miserable, have personal challenges, and be filled with obstacles for your hero. 


The last c is setting the “clock”.  The timeline should move forward and tick in the background.  Your reader can sense the importance of time.  This element adds importance to your story and keeps the audience focused on solving the problem with your hero.  They already know that it has to be solved and expect that it will.


Your audience follows along because they want to know how your hero is going to solve the problem or dilemma.  Adding in a ticking clock only builds the drama and creates the thriller part of your story.


After following a few courses, I can saw why he became a best seller.  His animated and excited way of expressing what he loves to do captures your attention.  He’s the kind of story teller that would suck you into their world he’s sharing.  You can’t help but follow along to find out how the story ends.


Follow as I post on my progress throughout the month and share the experience.


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Published by yoonjuwrites

I’m an author in Minnesota who started out writing and illustrating Children’s books. I’ve published poetry and adult Romance Novels. I created my website and social media to reach out to other writers because the process can be lonely. I wanted to reach out to readers, writers, and those with a dream of finishing “that” novel. I share the advice of other writers and the tools I use to create my stories.

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