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thriller-roundtable-logo5Characters in thrillers seem far too active to be couch potatoes. This week we ask ITW Members Kate Kessler, Patricia Rosemoor, Dave Edlund, Susanna C. Calkins, E. Michael Helms and Radha Vatsal what are your characters’ favorite activities?




it takes oneKate Kessler is a former juvenile delinquent who went from reading Nancy Drew to Sidney Sheldon by age eleven.  A peculiar addiction to soap operas at a young age, and an overblown sense of curiosity often resulted in landing her in trouble, an affliction that continued into her teens. These days. She lives in New England with her patient and supportive husband and four cats, who provide all the external drama her life needs.


his deceptionNew York Times and USA Today bestselling author Patricia Rosemoor has had 98 novels with 8 publishers and more than 7 million books in print. Her novels are romantic suspense or paranormal romantic thrillers. Patricia won a Golden Heart from Romance Writers of America and two Reviewers Choice and two Career Achievement Awards from Romantic Times BOOKreviews; she taught Suspense-Thriller Writing at Columbia College Chicago.



DEADLY DUNES coverE. Michael Helms grew up along the beautiful beaches of the Florida panhandle, the setting for the Mac McClellan mysteries. His battlefield memoir of Vietnam, THE PROUD BASTARDS, has been called “As powerful and compelling a battlefield memoir as any ever written . . . a modern military classic,” and has been in print for 25 years. Helms is also the author of THE PRIVATE WAR OF CORPORAL HENSON, an autobiographical novel and sequel to his memoir; OF BLOOD AND BROTHERS, a Civil War/Reconstruction saga; and The Mac McClellan Mystery series. He lives with his wife in the Upstate of South Carolina near the Blue Ridge Mountains, where he continues to listen as Mac McClellan dictates his latest mystery.



death alongSusanna Calkins writes the Lucy Campion mysteries, set in 17th century England. Her books have been nominated for several awards; her third—The Masque of a Murderer (Minotaur Books, 2015)—was shortlisted for the Mary Higgins Clark Award, the Agatha for Best Historical Mystery, and the Bruce Alexander Historical Mystery Award. Her fourth book—A Death Along the River Fleet—was released April 12, 2016. Born and raised in Philadelphia, she lives outside Chicago now with her husband and two sons.



DS front coverDave Edlund is a graduate of the University of Oregon with a doctoral degree in chemistry. He resides in Bend, Oregon, with his wife, son, and four dogs (Lucy Liu, Diesel, Murphy, and Tenshi). In addition to authoring several technical articles and books on alternative energy, Edlund is an inventor on 101 U.S. patents. An avid outdoorsman and shooter, he has hunted across North America, and he has traveled extensively throughout China, Japan, and Europe. A member of the International Thriller Writers, his debut action/political-thriller Crossing Savage received the 2015 Ben Franklin Silver Medal for Popular Fiction, and was a 2015 INDIEFAB finalist for Best Suspense/Thriller. Deadly Savage, the third novel in the Peter Savage series, will be released in May 2016. Edlund is the Founder & CEO of an alternative energy company, and he serves on the Central Oregon Writers Guild Board of Directors.


FrontPageAffairRadha Vatsal grew up in Mumbai, India, and came to the United States to attend boarding school when she was sixteen. She has stayed here ever since. Her fascination with the 1910s began when she studied women filmmakers and action-film heroines of silent cinema at Duke University, where she earned her Ph.D. from the English Department. A Front Page Affair is her first novel. Radha lives with her husband and two daughters in New York City.