Why I Write Suspense

D.L. WoodAuthor D. L. Wood writes:

As a child, I was one of those kids who had a tattered, dog-eared library card (yes, from the days when we had paper library cards) who whiled away the summers reading more books than were good for my eyesight. Or at least that’s what one optometrist told my mother. From that time a dream was planted in my heart—to be like those writers I enjoyed so much and create something that others could hold in their hands and enjoy. I wanted to whisk others away to another world and take them on a ride too.

From those days of reading Boxcar Children books, to my adult years and reading Grisham and James Scott Bell, the suspense genre has always been my favorite. Like so many readers I am drawn to stories with that element of tense unknowing, with that “you-have-to-turn-one-more-page-to-find-out” quality. It’s what drives me to the books that I read for entertainment and what I want my readers to get as well. Sometimes the suspense I write comes in the form of a traditional thriller with a “catch-me-if-you-can” storyline. Sometimes it’s more of a whodunit. But the suspense is always there, hopefully along with three-dimensional, likable (or ‘hate-able’) characters that are flawed, just like you and me, and sun-dripping, snow-capped, cricket-chirping locales that suck readers in.

When I got serious about writing I realized that I wanted my books to do a bit more than just entertain. Over time I discovered that what I truly enjoyed were books that not only entertained me, but left me with something more. Yes, I wanted to go on a thrill-ride, but I also loved it when I set the book down only to find that I carried something from it with me. Hope. Encouragement. A new perspective. Perhaps even a challenge to my faith. This realization inspired me to want to do the same thing for readers of my books. I wanted my stories to be multidimensional in scope. So I began writing CleanCaptivatingFiction™—fiction that not only entertains, but also uplifts. Fiction that gives the reader a great story and a take-away that somehow encourages them.

The most encouraging thing in my life is the hope I have in Christ. So in fashioning a plot I strive to somehow, through some character, portray faith in Christ in a way that is relevant, real and hopeful in the context of a solid storyline. The idea is to hearten those who already have faith in Christ, and to shine a light on Christ for those who may not have considered what He offers. I hope I’ve managed to do this by giving people quality fiction with just a little something extra, insuring it’s a good read for everybody, no matter what your faith background or stance may be.

So if you’re a suspense junkie looking for mystery, exciting action, nail-biting cliff-hangers and maybe even a romantic subplot now and again, check out Unintended Target, the first book in the Unintended Series. It was awarded the 2016 Illumination Awards Gold Medal for Christian fiction ebook and is available on Amazon in ebook and paperback. And keep an eye out for Unintended Witness, the next book in the series that I’m hard at work on right now.


D.L. Wood is an award-winning author who writes CleanCaptivatingFiction™ that entertains and uplifts. Wood loves the art of storytelling, particularly any tale involving suspense or the epic struggle of good versus evil. Wood tries to give readers the same thing she wants in the novels that she reads: a “can’t-put-it-down-stay-up-till-3am-story” that stays clean without sacrificing an iota of quality, believability or adrenaline. If she isn’t writing you’ll probably find her behind the keyboard getting ready for next week’s worship service or curled up with a cup of tea bingeing on the latest Sherlock series. Wood lives in North Alabama with her husband, twin daughters and Westies, Frodo and Dobby.


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