Why Psychological Suspense?

glossalalia coverWhy would I want to write a set of Psychological Suspense books? Maybe for some of the same reasons you like reading or writing them. Maybe you haven’t thought much about the category, and its rules; I’ll address a few in this post that may clarify your experience with that kind of book.

The focus in Psychological Suspense is on character depth and complexity rather than technology, justice, or speed of action, as it is in some types of Thrillers. Studies show when readers identify with protagonists we remain physically changed by them for a long time. We vicariously go through their experiences in an intimate way.

I want to help readers imagine what it could be like to experience the kind of bewilderment is possible in this complicated world we live in. Maybe readers who have experienced long term confusion find such books familiar, realistic, even cathartic, as the protagonist figures things out. The world making some amount of sense can be a relief by the end, yet there remains the awareness that our society runs on continual illusion, and the nature of reality and personality are not likely to ever be fully grasped completely.

My books in this set could also be considered Political Thrillers, secondarily, as the confusion happens from outside sources deliberately affecting them for a large social agenda, not just personal issues. My interest is in how social engineering for political purposes creates personal illusions deliberately — and the glory of finding lucidity.

Psychological Suspense helps us identify with the victims who may or may not turn things around and come out in one piece, maybe toward the Thriller direction of saving a large number of others as well. As I’m not a policeman, lawyer, doctor, or in the military, I don’t feel qualified to write those kinds of Thrillers. But as a citizen in a society that runs on propaganda, demonizing truth-seekers, paid trolls, corrupt politicians, toxic environment, etc. I can speak for the masses who have to find their way through the morass. And I can help create a sense of empowerment by the end, motivating people to keep pushing for fairness, standing up for themselves, and focusing on facts rather than propaganda.

Psychological Suspense must be emotional, with feelings being honored. I find pure outward, technical action less interesting that something more well-rounded, though those things are also important to me. My writing is naturally full of science and facts, as I try to point out the effects of little-known history, and draw attention to military technology that is in place. So I counterbalance that by forcing myself to also remember the readers want to feel heart-pounding fear, and not get too caught up in the cerebral. Being in touch with authentic feelings is a good part of lucidity and being able to avoid being mislead by falsehoods.

In Glossolalia, Nancy has been traumatized in a way that affects her understanding of the world, and she must come to grips with how it’s changed her. She doesn’t just get it intellectually, but the emotions have to be part of her revelation for it to work. The reader’s personal involvement with her can make that kind of trauma real, and make it matter more than just reading about such things with the distance of non-fiction about how such processes take place.

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Psychological Suspense Thriller Novella

glossalalia coverGlossolalia: a Psychological Suspense Thriller is a novella with a kick-ass female protagonist named Nancy.

http://www.insubordinatebooks.com/

What do you do when the proper authority to report a crime to — is the criminal?

Nancy just wants to keep the only job she can get. No one else would put up with her fugues. Who else but her uncle would hire her? So she works at his poison company even though it goes against her beliefs.

Hell, everything she puts in her mouth goes against her beliefs. But she stays in shape because she’s a wild kicker; her idea of fun is competing in Karate tournaments. Besides, defending herself could be necessary. She apparently gets into quite the scrapes in unknown territories.

Accompanied by Dog, and visions of Bennu, the traditional Egyptian flamingo god who is the shadow self of Osiris, she plays out her roles in the deadly game.

She watches what she suspects is a crime in progress at the company, and a death defying chase ensues. Can she stay alive long enough to find out what happened and save the lives of countless people, animals, and plants?

Only if she can discover who she is in time.

Spiral structure in Unside: A Book of Closed Time-Like Curves

Though my novel, Unside, is Science Fiction, it has some Literary elements, such as innovative structure, which I feel should still leave it accessible for genre readers. What this means is that the Plot Reversals are are so sharp, they turn in on themselves.

A Plot Reversal is a core element of plot which keeps any successful book from proceeding linearly and being boring. The protagonist’s encounter with the antagonist shows him some new insight and he reassesses and veers off in a different direction.

In Unside, these reassessments are drastic because of the nature of the illusions and deceptions the protagonist is under, as he learns things are not at all what they seem. I chose this structure partly to mimic the intensity I experience, and others like me, when we look deeply into the reality of our society. It becomes full of thrills and chills, more and more euphoric, perhaps grimly euphoric.

CounterIntelligence’s job is to fool the public, and this does not just apply to foreign countries but domestic citizens as well. For example, to protect the secrecy of military advanced technology, they created the hoax that aliens were interacting with us, to throw people off the scent in other countries, but of course, we had to believe it here too. Unside obliquely references this history at some point in the novel. As people who believed in such hoaxes try to look into them, they find layers and layers of deceit by Counter Intelligence agents who pretend to be involved. This particular hoax began in the 1940s and and is well documented.

Kenneth Arnold was a CIA disinfo agent and invented his story about a UFO for them; similarly, the Maury Island story from 1946 was is disinformation; Fred Crisman was a CIA disinformationist. The CIA promoting the lie of alien vehicles in 1952 in the mainstream press using assets like Henry Luce and Roswell was perhaps the most famous cover-story to make people look away from the reality toward the hoax that aliens had landed.

While many sitings remain mysterious and unidentified and strange things do occur, in general, UFOs have been shown to be military, based on Paperclip technology, and various countries’ Intelligence agencies fabricate hoaxes to cover up their military secrets, which only makes sense for them to do strategically. It does mess with people’s heads, though.

CounterIntelligence agents took on different roles to look like they were hiding it, were contactees, were disagreeing with other contactees over which aliens were good and which bad, etc. to make a maze for people trying to get at the truth. So, in situations like this, people who penetrate those illusions find themselves aghast which each new layer they uncover, being fooled with each layer until finally seeing past them all.

The experience of reading this novel should mimic that, as the reader realizes more deeply how the characters are being tricked. As the story progresses, it becomes more obviously Science Fiction the more the layers are revealed. That sense of realizing the deceits in our culture is tingling, scintillating, a rush, and I wanted to create that sensation in the reader with each new turn that spins the narrative around to took at itself from a completely different angle, on a deeper level.

I also chose the spiral structure to mimic the closed time-like curves, and the Lens-Thirring Effect that creates Frame Dragging. Various scientists and pseudo-scientists have proposed the energy from that — the friction created by the spinning of a body such as the Earth — can be milked as a power source, and that possibility is considered in this novel. It is not only considered in the macro sense, but also in the micro sense, in a whimsical way, and also in a sinister sense that involves the reader himself, his own experience of the spiral structure’s mind-blowing Plot Reversals being a kind of Lens-Thirring Effect in itself.

The Table of Contents reflects this spiral effect, not in its shape on the page, but numerically. As the characters begin again and encounter the realm of The Fool, it begins again, at 0. By the end, it has broken down into fractions, imaginary numbers, etc. This is the main cerebral, playful Experimental element of the novel, something to entertain my Innovative Literary Fiction audience.

In another sense, the plot is traditional, just very dramatic, as the tension arcs over the course of its 80,000 pages. I have studied and taught and edited traditional structure and know it very well. I like to venture beyond predictable formula at times, however, if there is a good reason for it, and I encourage other authors to do so too when it’s feasible and entertaining.

Science Fiction novel to be published by Driven Press in 2015

Unside: A Book of Closed Time-Like Curves will be put out in print and e-book by Driven Press. Have you ever thought you knew something, looked closer, and found out you were wrong, that something deeper was going on? And then looked closer and found out that was an illusion too, and each time you learned more, found out there were more layers of deceit? Most likely you have, if you spend any time researching the news, history, and our culture which has been molded by CounterIntelligence into what they want us to think it is.

The spiral structure of this full-length SF novel creates that same chilling sensation of getting closer and closer to the intensity of the truth. While Unside is all made up, and happens in the very near future, it sheds light on real contemporary events. So this book is like your friend, who understands what it’s like to live in this society as an aware individual searching for what’s really going on.

And it’s an entertaining friend, who likes to relax with you in a comfy chair and eat ginger truffles. There are jaunty dancing skeletons, an eccentric Japanese American protagonist who likes to conduct auras, a friendly store owner selling fascinating skeletal decorations, and a seeing-eye dog named after the remote viewer, Ingo Swann.

Sign up to know when it’s coming out if that sounds good to you, and stay tuned for more about it and the advanced technology proposals by DARPA it’s based on.

40 percent off on my new book through Dec 15th

Efemaleandrew9

Equinox Mirror is normally 17.00 but is only 60 percent of that right now if you enter the code 40NOW into the ELJ site when ordering! Wow, if you ever want to buy it, now is the time. It’s not Genre, but it’s an exploration of science, is fantastical, is even macabre, so it touches on all the elements.

Want to read occult fiction? A recursive tale of physics?

Do you identify with how hard it is to be able to tell how you look in the mirror, considering they all reflect a slightly different shape? What if you had the mental illness called Body Dysmorphia (Alice in Wonderland Disorder) and really had no idea at all how you looked? That’s what the Lucky Lavaggio goes through, the protagonist of this illustrated novella. She just wants to know if she should even bother trying to win back love, continue on her career, or flirt and act pretty, or not.

And she has a plan, based on the Dysmorphic Grimoire. A ritual requiring travel to show her truth in her wild, changing scrying mirror made magic through her perceptual eccentricity from youth.

What will happen at her boarding house when she leaves the denizens to their own devices?

And who is she? What is she? And what is the Other Lucky Lavaggio and why is he flashing in and out of her awareness as he fights the Void?

This is the time to find out.

Guest Blog Topics

Emotherguitar9As my recursive novella is coming out from ELJ Publications, I’m interested in offering a copy to a reader of your blog if it’s popular with an audience for the style of this book, and in doing a post about relevant topics for anyone interested in running it, whatever your readership. This applies to any site you write your blog on. Here is a list of subjects I could discuss, not just in the context of this narrative but expanded for general interest.

Slipstream

Neo-Noir

Physics concepts

Dysmorphia (Alice in Wonderland Syndrome)

Experimental Literary Fiction

New Wave Fabulism

The history of scrying

Recursiveness in literary narrative

Kundalini

Stockholm Syndrome

Just contact if you’re interested, flameflower at runbox dot com

Equinox Mirror

Equinox Mirror is my forthcoming book from ELJ Publications, due out Dec. 5th. 2014. Readers of only Genre fiction probably would not like it, as it’s ambitious Literary fiction exploring new territory. But it’s entirely based on a valid existing scientific theory, so people who like SF because of imagining what the world might be like may well find this novella stimulating.

It’s dark, weird, occult, paranormal, macabre and eccentric, not usual straight edged hard SF, but I wrote it to consider the reality of the well-known theory. I just don’t want to say what that is, because that would be a spoiler.

It has 23 illustrations to help visualize what’s going on in this convoluted tale of scrying, recursive imagination. Each set of illustrations is different for each character, from the heavy black splattered void-fighting male Lucky Lavaggio to the delicate pencil strokes of the uncertain mother, to the childlike imaginings of the demented female Lucky.

“Lucky Lavaggio, who can’t discern how she looks, and thus how to take appropriate action, takes her magic scrying mirror on a trip through the time zones to where it is already Autumn — a ritual prescribed in the Dysmorphic Grimoire to see one’s self clearly and know the future. Mystified by her flashing awareness of a male Lucky Lavaggio who fights the Void, and overwhelmed by her sense of everything happening at once as one continuum, due to her prematurely raised Kundalini, she counts on the reassuring continual presence of a woman she keeps in the oubliette at all times through subterfuge. The eccentric characters at her boarding house, who resemble those who populated her childhood dollhouse, patiently suffer through her weirdness — but for how long?

This illustrated Neo-Noir Slipstream novella explores physics, the occult, passionate longing, and precarious mortality.”

Anyone interested in a review copy, please contact.