Guest Post & Giveaway: Turning Out Suspenseful Plots by Jessica R. Patch

Did everyone have a wonderful Independence Day? When I think of suspense, there are quite a few authors that are on my must read list, and Jessica R. Patch is definitely on that list!  I'm excited to have her on the blog today chatting on the one question that is on all suspense readers mind, especially after a very good and intense read. And now, Jessica's here to answer that!
Thank you, Annie, for having me back. I love hanging out at your online home. The big question I’m often asked is: How do you come up with your ideas?

Good question and I’m sure each author’s ideas vary some.

Many of my suspense ideas/stories—the darker ones—come from scripture. I know that sounds freaky but it’s true. Many killers have a twisted sense of God and religious aspects. For example, I’ve plotted a story about a killer who coming after victims and taking their eyes. Yes, that’s creepy, but the idea came from Isaiah 59. “They grope as in darkness.” His twisted view propels him to kill in this way. The beauty of the story, is I get to take that crooked idea, and straighten in out in the light of Jesus! Characters who are not believers have seed sown into their lives—or watered. And some make the decision to place their faith in God. So that’s one way, I find suspense ideas.

Another way is from searching the internet. I receive FBI news in my email once a week and I peruse the articles, see if there’s anything that might spark an idea. Or I may google something that strikes my fancy and toy with the idea. Not all ideas produce a book. Some stay little nuggets.

And then there’s the character who pops into my head and out of the blue simply says something. A piece of dialogue with another character. A snippet really and I just know that I need to explore what he or she said. For example, one morning I woke up—still in that twilight sleep and my hero (FBI agent) says to the heroine (also FBI agent), “I left you because you were already married!”

My heroine looks at this white board covered in photos, news articles and her writings. The room is plastered with research. She’s dying inside, teary-eyed. My hero goes on to say, “I can’t compete in your heart with a serial killer, Fiona. I couldn’t then. I can’t now. Can you divorce him? Because if you can’t, then I can’t reconcile this marriage.”

My heart ached for this couple! And I wanted to know why she was so obsessed with this killer that it wrecked her marriage. AND SHE TOLD ME! I’m actually writing this novel right now. It’s titled: Cradle of Lies. PS there will be a happy ending.

There are many other factors: A setting that seems good for a mystery or murder such as a location, event, weather, etc… A TV show or movie might even spark an idea.

But when all is said and done, I believe that God truly leads me to ideas. Because no matter how scary or dark they seem, His glory always shines bright in the end. And isn’t that what inspirational fiction is all about? Real hope. Fictional stories.



I’d love to give away a copy of Deep Waters. It released on July 1 on Kindle and July 4 in paperback. U.S. citizens (paperback copy) and abroad (e-book version). Also, I wrote a short online prequel to this book. You can find it at harlequin.com ONLINE READS. Each week a new chapter is available! The story is called Protecting the Witness.


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About Jessica

Jessica R. Patch lives in the mid-south where she pens inspirational contemporary romance and romantic suspense novels. Readers will identify with characters that are flawed but redeemable. 

Jessica grew up in southern Illinois. She attended Central Bible College where she met her husband, an ordained minister with Destiny Ministries. She's served as a Biblical Studies teacher, Women’s Ministry leader, Regional Women’s Representative,  co-pastor with her husband of the Young Adult Ministry as well as taught workshop and spoken to Women’s groups. Currently, she teaches the new & growing believers class with curriculum she wrote. She is a member of the ACFW, and Byhalia Christian Writers Group, a chapter of American Christian Writers. 

When she’s not hunched over her laptop or going on adventurous trips in the name of research with willing friends, you can find her sneaking off to movies with her husband, watching way too much Netflix with her daughter, dominating her son at board games, and collecting recipes to amazing dishes she'll probably never cook. She's the author of the Seasons of Hope series, Fatal Reunion, and Protective Duty. Jessica is represented by Rachel Kent of Books & Such Literary Management.
 

CONNECT WITH JESSICA: Website Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest  


About Deep Waters

Title:  Deep Waters
Series: The Security Specialists, Book 1
Author: Jessica R. Patch
Publisher:  Love Inspired Suspense
Release Date:  July 4m 2017
Genre: Inspirational Contemporary Fiction / Suspense




DUTY TO PROTECT

Thirty feet underwater when her oxygen tank fails, Caley Flynn fears it's been sabotaged--and she'll be the next to die. Her intern's already dead, her home breached and something's amiss at her Florida marine-life rescue center...but no one believes she's in danger. Except Shepherd Lightman. When Caley's brother asked him to check on her, the marine turned security specialist hoped it would be a case of calming down a nervous veterinarian. But the threats are all too real. Rescuing Caley and remaining alive isn't easy, but resisting his boss's sister is where the real danger lies. Because with his heart in the balance, he'll do whatever it takes to stop a killer who's desperate to keep a secret hidden.



CLICK HERE TO SEE MY REVIEW of DEEP WATERS

TO PURCHASE A COPY

  
  


(1) Winner will receive a copy of Deep Water, courtesy of the author.
Open internationally. U.S. citizens (paperback copy) and abroad (e-book version)

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CONVERSATION

48 comments:

  1. It's always interesting to me how authors come up with ideas for their books. I love that you get notices from the FBI. I'm a big watcher of shows like Dateline, 20/20 and 48 hours. Have you ever gotten ideas from TV shows or real life dramas?

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    1. I agree Gail. Before my jump into Christian suspense, the only "suspense" I get are from tv shows or movies. So it'll be great to see what ideas authors can get from them!

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    2. Hi Gail! I have gotten ideas from TV and movies before. And even from watching documentaries and reading True Crime books.

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  2. Thanks for the giveaway! The story sounds so interesting.

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    1. O it is, MH! It is! Check out my review if you get the chance. Honestly, a great story!

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    2. Thanks for stopping by and entering!

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  3. Sorry.. not so creative with story ideas. I love history so historical accounts make for good plot lines.

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    1. I also love a historical twist into stories! Great idea!

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  4. this sounds like an interesting book. I have always wondered where suspense writers get their ideas from. And that she gets it from the Bible is so cool.
    quilting dash lady at Comcast dot net

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    1. Right, Lori??!! Isn't that awesome that Jess gets it from the Bible??!

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    2. I'm always the most excited about the plots that come from a scripture. :)

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  5. No ideas come to mind right now.

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    1. Same here. If one ask me, my mind will definitely draw a blank!

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  6. Sounds like you are very creative, coming up with those exciting premises for your books. I'm afraid I'm not very creative that way.
    We lived in Springfield, Mo for three years and moved to STL for twenty and then moved back just north of Springfield two years ago. So we know some folks from CBC!
    Looking forward to reading your books! Thanks.

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    1. Paula, once you read Jessica's books, you'll have no doubt about her creativity!

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    2. That's so cool! We loved our time there. It closed down now, but a few years ago we took our children there to tour and see where we went to school! :)

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  7. I love how you get ideas from scripture. I lay in bed and have creative ideas all the time. They come from God or it is a gift He has given me. Thank you

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    1. It truly is a gift! And at night when it's quiet is when I get some good ideas and then of course I can't sleep!

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  8. I'm always amazed how authors come up with ideas for books. "Deep Waters" sounds like a great read.

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    1. Dianne, Deep Waters is great! You should also check out Jessica's other novels. Very good reads!

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    2. I'm glad you think so! I hope you enjoy it when. you get the chance to read it!

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  9. Sounds like Jessica's imagination is alive and active. I'm sure if you're a writer your mind is more alert to the "what ifs" around you.

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    1. So true. Being observant must be a key ingredient in the 'author' area!

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    2. I think sometimes it is, but I know how to turn it off if I just want to enjoy and zone out. But most of the time I leave it on high alert because some of the best ideas come from observing or eavesdropping! LOL

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  10. Such an interesting interview. I find it fascinating that you drew ideas from scripture. I can see that working. I love the water but have a healthy wariness around it. My son almost drowned twice when I wasn't with him and it brought home how quickly a fun dip can turn deadly. Deep Waters sounds thrilling and I would very much like to read it.

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    1. Laura, I'm glad your son is good. I had a similar experience when I was younger, and now, I'm a tad wary of the water as well. So I get it. Deep Waters is a great read. I hope you'll get the chance to read it soon too!

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    2. I'm glad your son is okay! Water can be terrifying and I'm not a great swimmer so I'm very cautious when I'm in charge of my kids swimming. And I don't like to be out deep in the ocean where my feet can't touch. I wig out too much! I'm glad you think the books sounds thrilling. I hope you enjoy it when you get a chance to read it!

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  11. I think it is amazing how authors come up with ideas for their stories! I would have never pulled that thought from that scripture. My dad was scared to death of water but served in the U.S. Coast Guard during WWII.

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    1. I love hearing how authors come up with ideas too! And thank your dad's service for our country and thank you for your sacrifice.

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    2. Donna, I see that as a plot! Someone who has to rescue people from water but is afraid of it! Like that show Doc Martin. He's a surgeon who's afraid of blood! I love it.

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  12. Great interview! My ideas come from my and my family's crazy lives.

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    1. Ha! I think we can all pull some good stuff from our crazy family lives!

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  13. Hmmm... I love your theme of your books....my daughter is an aspiring writer and I am astounded on how authors come up with their ideas...I quilt, so why not incorporate quilting into your next book??? ;0)

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    1. hahah. So cool Connie. I'm hoping to learn to quilt, so that'll be a great subject.

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    2. I've always wished I could quilt because I love quilts! I know there are some good cozy mysteries out there that have quilts involved and Jodie Bailey was in a series about quilts. You should check her book out! Just go to Amazon and google Jodie Bailey!

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  14. I don't write books (maybe after teaching), but I have many book ideas written down! My ideas usually come from dreams or my imagination.
    Dianna

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    1. Dianna, those are great! Maybe you can share with an author friend?!

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    2. You're smart to write the ideas down. I do that now, but there was a time I thought I'd remember so I didn't, and guess what? I forgot!

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  15. Ideas for books often come to me from events in my life.

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  16. Such an interesting topic and to find out how much Bible stories influence your plotting. It would be fun to craft a modern day "Esther" kind of story. Lots of suspense there.

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    1. So true! And I'll leave that to the talented authors to come up with some fun ideas! Thanks for sharing!

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    2. Definitely! I have a suspense series I loosely based off of David and Jonathan's friendship and covenant with each other. It's not published though--yet!

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  17. Visiting new places & just learning how things are different in other areas.

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  18. Thanks, Annie, for having me. Sorry I'm late to the party. We were on vacation last week and I didn't have much internet access! :) It's great to be here, though.

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