Writing a thriller novel or a short story? This six-week course will help you dissect your own writing and make your work-in-progress more thrilling to keep your readers on the edge of their...

There are no available registration dates at this time.

Note: Class meets online using a Zoom format and meets 6 Thursdays (Oct 6, 13, 20, 27 & Nov 3, 10) 6:30-8:30pm EST + 20 min one on ones for each student.

Eerie figure putting their hand on a window
Learn practical tools for how to write your own successful thriller.

They go by many names: page-turners, nail-biters, wild rides—call them what you will, readers just can’t seem to get enough thriller fiction. But what makes a good thriller? Is it merely ending every chapter with a cliff-hanger? Is it nearly delaying the inevitable?

Whether you’re writing a novel or a short story, this six-week course will help you dissect your own writing and figure out how to make your work-in-progress more thrilling. By combining the elements of character, plot, perspective, and verisimilitude, students will gain an understanding of the ingredients that go into the perfect thriller stew.

Each weekly Zoom session will include a PowerPoint-assisted lecture, class discussion, film screening(s), and writing exercises. Students will then be given an assignment to be completed the following week. The course will conclude with 1:1 meetings with the instructor.

So come join your peers and learn how to keep your readers on the edge of their…

What to Expect:

  • Weekly 90 minute PowerPoint assisted lectures via Zoom
  • Readings of effective examples followed by class discussion
  • Writing exercises and assignments
  • One-on-ones with the instructor at the conclusion of the course

This workshop will provide you with:

  • A better understanding of what makes a story thrilling, suspenseful, and/or disturbing.
  • Engaging lectures and participating in class discussions.
  • Practical tools for how to write your own successful thriller.

Works by the instructor, Asher Ellis:

Examples of Asher Ellis' work

Reviews of Asher Ellis’ work:

“Take THE WENDIGO, THE BARRENS, and DELIVERANCE, add lots of shocks and real surprises, and you have one hell of a great thriller.” – Nancy Holder, New York Times best selling author of DEAD IN THE WATER and THE SCREAMING SEASON

“A fun, clever thriller with surprising twists that manages to breathe new life into an old trope.” – Brian Keene, two-time Bram Stoker Award winning author of THE RISING and CONQUERER WORMS

“Claustrophobic and unrelenting.” – Tom Deady, Bram Stoker Award winning author of HAVEN.

“Ellis has a way of sweeping you up into his world and its crazies and its dark secrets, squealing all the way.” – Mary Sangiovanni, author of the Kathy Ryan series and the upcoming ALIEN: ENEMY OF MY ENEMY: AN ORIGINAL NOVEL BASED ON THE FILMS FROM 20TH CENTURY STUDIOS.

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Instructor: Asher Ellis

Asher Ellis is a screenwriter, educator, and author of the novels The Remedy, PET, Curse of the Pigman, and Cracker Jack. He has written multiple award-winning short films, including Exit 7A, which was included in the feature-length horror anthologies, The Portal and Conjure X. His penned short film, My Name Is Art, was featured in Amazon.com's first annual "All Voices Film Festival," celebrating underrepresented communities. Other writing credits include the short story, "Expertise," which was among the award winners in the Writer's Digest Thriller Competition, judged by the best-selling author of First Blood and creator of Rambo, David Morrell.