Friday, January 6, 2012

Why a Serial Killer?

I thought I would write a bit about one of my thrillers today and why I wrote the book that I did. MOMMY, MAY I? is a book that either readers seem to love or hate. There aren't too many who are in between about it. I think those who love it are fascinated by the development of a serial killer, and those who hate it abhor such a topic. I do warn readers that it is graphic and disturbing. It is about a serial killer!

When I wrote the book I had recently finished a handful of thrillers that focused on the killer, but the thing that left me questioning always was; WHY? How does someone become so heinous, so evil? Are they born that way? Does their environment create them? I didn't know the answers, so I started doing a ton of research. It was disturbing research and the answers were equally disturbing. Environment seemed to play a lot into what creates a serial killer.

I read books and essays, watched documentaries and even discovered there was a serial killer in my family's genealogy, who I don't really want to name as the guy is still alive and has tried to contact my uncle several times. YUCKY SCARY!

Anyway, after all of this I decided to write a book that intertwined the lives of some good characters with this horrible killer. The most important aspect for me was to detail out how this killer grew into what he did. It is disturbing. It is compelling form my point of view. It is a combination of research and imagination that make up the bulk of the book. It is certainly not a book for everyone. There is some animal cruelty in it, which was extremely difficult for me to write because if you know me then you know that I am a huge animal lover and have a bunch of animals who I treat like family. However, many of these types of killers begin their spree on innocent animals. That is the reality of it. There is a reference to incest. Again--not easy to write but a reality that many of these killers were abused as kids. And, I am certain what is most offensive is the fact that the killer in the story is a necrophiliac. Yes--disturbing, but not something I just pulled out of a rabbit hat.

Serial killers are sick, disturbed and completely heinous individuals. Writing a book with a character like this was not easy, but the story did come to me and the good characters in it are heroic and show the other side of humanity. There is plenty of evil in the world, but I also believe it to be true that there is more good.

I hope you have a wonderful week.For anyone who wants to read Mommy, May I? it is FREE for Amazon Kindle right now.



Joanie said...

Don't laugh, but this makes me think of a Murder She Wrote episode I never forgot. Jessica was teaching at some university, and she was (of course) trying to solve the murder of someone within her current circle of acquaintances. She changed her class plan of the day to be a discussion of talks and brainstorming about how a killer develops a plan to kill, and all the students began with shouting out responses more in-tune with police procedural than actually getting into the head of the killer. My thinking is that like this class, we are too used to seeing it from the justice angle, than from the killer's perspective. Which might also explain why Hannibal Lector is still cited as one of our favorite (for lack of a better word) villains. Thomas Harris used Lector to let us see into the mind of the killer the FBI was trying to catch. Not your normal fiction route.

I think the fact that you have such a swing in audience favor on this book is pretty indicative of the fact that you're probably right on the money for opening people's eyes to the other side of the mystery coin. Good going.

Michele Scott as A.K. Alexander said...

Hi Joanie,

Thank You! Actually, Hannibal's character was quite an influence for this book.

And, I am not laughing. :) I loved Jessica Fletcher!