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This week ITW Members Tess Gerritsen, Steven James, J. H. Bográn, M.R. Gott and Jeff Carlson discuss climaxes…in thrillers: “”Thrillers are known for their grand, loud, all-out climaxes. How do you set them up?”


Trained as a medical doctor, Tess Gerritsen built a second career as a thriller writer. Her 24 novels include the Rizzoli and Isles crime series, on which the TV show “Rizzoli & Isles” is based. Among her titles are THE SURGEON, ICE COLD, and THE SILENT GIRL, and the upcoming LAST TO DIE. Her books are translated into 37 languages and more than 25 million copies have been sold. She lives in Maine.

M.R. Gott, the author of WHERE THE DEAD FEAR TO TREAD and the forthcoming sequel WHERE THE DAMNED FEAR REDEMPTION, is a resident of New Hampshire, content with his wife, two cats and a dog, while his controlled imagination produces spine-chilling works, leading readers to self-knowledge. With disciplined skill, Gott binds disparate scenes of truth flashing across his “imaginaire” into a coherent whole achieved through “outlining and mapping the series of events and character’s growth”, followed by rigorous editing. Aside from writing, M.R. enjoys strong coffee, dark beer, red wine, and fading light.

J. H. Bográn, born and raised in Honduras, is the son of a journalist. He ironically prefers to write fiction rather than fact. José’s genre of choice is thrillers, but he likes to throw in a twist of romance into the mix. His works include novels and short stories in both English and Spanish. He’s a member of the International Thriller Writers where he also serves as the Thriller Roundtable Coordinator. His short story fantasy fiction, DEEDS OF A MASTER ARCHER, will be released in September. You can find him on Twitter @JHBogran, Facebook and Blogger.

Steven James has penned 30+ books including the award-winning Patrick Bowers series. He has received wide critical acclaim for his work including two Publishers Weekly starred reviews and three Christy Awards. His thriller The Queen won a 2012 ECPA Award and a 2012 Christy Award. Steven is an active member of International Thriller Writers, the Authors Guild, Mystery Writers of America, and International Association of Crime Writers. He is a contributing editor to Writer’s Digest and has taught writing and storytelling principles on three continents. He lives in Tennessee with his wife and three daughters.

Jeff Carlson is the international bestselling author of Plague Year and The Frozen Sky. To date, his work has been translated into fifteen languages worldwide. Readers can find free fiction, videos, contests, and more on his web site at




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