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thriller-roundtable-logo5The thriller and horror genres often go hand in hand, but this week ITW members Colin Campbell, Lee Murray, Carole Lawrence, Catharine Riggs, Eric J. Guinard, Sandra Ruttan, DiAnn Mills, Michaelbrent Collings and Andrew Bourelle will be discussing what thriller writers can learn from the horror genre. Scroll down to the “comments” section to follow along!


Carole Lawrence (C. E. Lawrence, Carole Bugge) is the author of eleven published novels, award-winning plays, musicals, poetry and short fiction.  Her most recent novel is the historical thriller Edinburgh Dusk, the second book in the Ian Hamilton Mysteries series.  Her “Silent” series (Silent Screams and its sequels) follows NYPD profiler Lee Campbell in his pursuit of serial killers. Her plays and musicals have been performed internationally – including an original Sherlock Holmes musical.  Her most recent musical is Murder on Bond Street, based on a true story. A self-described science geek, she likes to hunt wild mushrooms.


DiAnn Mills is a bestselling author who believes her readers should expect an adventure. She creates action-packed, suspense-filled novels to thrill readers. Her titles have appeared on the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists; won two Christy Awards; and been finalists for the RITA, Daphne Du Maurier, Inspirational Readers’ Choice, and Carol award contests. She is co-director of the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writer’s Conference and Mountainside Marketing Conference


Andrew Bourelle is the author of the novel Heavy Metal, winner of the Autumn House Fiction Prize. He also is the coauthor with James Patterson of the novel Texas Ranger and novella The Pretender. His short stories include mystery, horror, science fiction, and other genres, and have twice been selected for inclusion in The Best American Mystery Stories and twice listed as honorable mention for The Best Horror of the Year.


Ellen Byron writes the Cajun Country Mystery series. A Cajun Christmas Killing and Body on the Bayou both won the Lefty Award for Best Humorous Mystery and were nominated for Agatha awards. Plantation Shudders was nominated for Agatha, Lefty, and Daphne awards. Mardi Gras Murder, just released, was deemed a “winner” by Publishers Weekly. Ellen’s TV credits include Wings, Just Shoot Me, and Fairly OddParents; published plays include the award-winning Graceland.


Ex-army, retired cop and former scenes of crime officer Colin Campbell is the author of British crime novels Blue Knight White Cross, and Northern Ex, and US thrillers Jamaica Plain, Montecito Heights, Adobe Flats and Snake Pass. His Jim Grant thrillers bring a rogue Yorkshire cop to America where culture clash and violence ensue.


Sandra Ruttan has had her foot partially severed, survived a car crash in the Sahara Desert and almost drowned. Between disasters she stays busy with her writing, family and dogs. Her sixth novel, The Spying Moon, was published September 2018 by Down & Out Books.



Lee Murray is an award-winning writer and editor (Sir Julius Vogel, Australian Shadows). Her latest thrillers include New Zealand military thriller INTO THE SOUNDS (Severed Press), and supernatural crime-noir, TEETH OF THE WOLF (Raw Dog Screaming Press) co-authored with Dan Rabarts. HELLHOLE, a volume of subterranean thriller stories, including novelettes from Jonathan Maberry, Michael McBride, and Sean Ellis, is forthcoming from Gryphonwood Press in December.


Michaelbrent Collings is an internationally-bestselling indie author, multiple Bram Stoker Award Finalist, produced screenwriter and WGA member, and one of the indie horror authors in the United States.



Catharine Riggs lives and writes on California’s Central Coast. A graduate of UCLA with an MBA from Drake University, she is a former business banker, adjunct college instructor and current nonprofit executive with a handful of starter novels tucked away in a drawer. What She Gave Away is her debut novel. Her first work of psychological suspense features an outsider with a dark past and a bitter grudge who moves to a wealthy beach-side community only to find herself enmeshed in the secrets of her boss and his hapless wife. Riggs is currently at work on the second novel of her Santa Barbara Suspense trilogy. The thrillers are loosely linked by location and secondary characters.


Eric. J. Guignard is a writer and editor of dark and speculative fiction, operating from the shadowy outskirts of Los Angeles, where he also runs the small press, Dark Moon Books. He’s won the Bram Stoker Award, been a finalist for the International Thriller Writers Award, and a multi-nominee of the Pushcart Prize.