F301. Building a Mystery: The Craft of Thriller-Writing for Young Adults

C125-126, Oregon Convention Center, Level 1
Friday, March 29, 2019
4:30 pm to 5:45 pm


Several young adult authors discuss the craft of writing thrillers, mystery, and suspense for teens. Topics include plot development and narrative structure; writing research; generating narrative suspense; developing three-dimensional characters and relationships in page-turning fiction; and writing crime, murder, and mayhem for a teen audience. Panelists dig into tips and tricks of the trade and discuss one another’s work as well as the work of other masters of the YA thriller craft.



Kit Frick is a novelist, poet, and MacDowell Colony fellow. A Senior Editor at Black Lawrence Press, she holds an MFA from Syracuse University. Kit is the author of the young adult novels See All the Stars and All Eyes on Us, as well as the poetry collection A Small Rising Up in the Lungs.

Amelia Brunskill is a writer and librarian based in Chicago. Her debut young adult novel is a mystery/thriller titled The Window, and her short stories have been published in Ninth Letter and Indiana Review.

Maxine Kaplan was born in Washington, DC, and now lives in Brooklyn. She studied English and political science at Oberlin College and held a variety of positions in the publishing world before landing at her current job as a private investigator. The Accidental Bad Girl is her first novel.

Ann Jacobus is the author of young adult novel, Romancing the Dark in the City of Light. She earned her MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts and is a volunteer crisis-line and outreach counselor for San Francisco Suicide Prevention.


February 7–10, 2024
Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City Convention Center