Guest Post: 5 Differences Between Writing Romantic Comedies and Crime Thrillers by Robert Bryndza

Tuesday 9 February 2016
Ahead of the publication of Robert Bryndza's first crime thriller novel I am sharing this guest post from Robert where he lists the five differences between writing romantic comedies and crime thrillers. His first crime novel is The Girl in the Ice and take it from me, it is not a book you want to miss and my review of it can be read on the blog later this week. For now though, I hope you enjoy reading the guest post.

Her eyes are wide open. Her lips parted as if to speak. Her dead body frozen in the ice… She is not the only one. 

When a young boy discovers the body of a woman beneath a thick sheet of ice in a South London park, Detective Erika Foster is called in to lead the murder investigation.

The victim, a beautiful young socialite, appeared to have the perfect life. Yet when Erika begins to dig deeper, she starts to connect the dots between the murder and the killings of three prostitutes, all found strangled, hands bound and dumped in water around London.

What dark secrets is the girl in the ice hiding? 

As Erika inches closer to uncovering the truth, the killer is closing in on Erika.

The last investigation Erika led went badly wrong… resulting in the death of her husband. With her career hanging by a thread, Erika must now battle her own personal demons as well as a killer more deadly than any she’s faced before. But will she get to him before he strikes again?

5 Differences Between Writing Romantic Comedies and Crime Thrillers

1. Jokes, jokes, jokes... 
When I write romantic comedies I have trained myself to always go for the joke. Whilst real-life has moments of humour, it was tough at first to write drama. It felt flat in comparison. I have included a few light moments in The Girl In The Ice to ease the tension, but so many jokes had to be removed. Murder just isn't funny.

2. The whodunnit? 
I have loved working out who the killer is and then concealing his or her identity until the end, something you don't get to do with a romantic comedy.

3. The Crazy Friend vs The Crazy. 
I love writing the crazy friend in my romantic comedies, but crime thrillers don't really have them. Or if they do, they tend to be psychopathic and sadistic.. and not really all that friendly. I missed writing a crazy friend, but creating a truly scary psychopathic killer has really made up for it.

4. First vs third person. 
In my romantic comedies I love using the first person narrative, really getting inside the head of a character. When I started the first draft of The Girl In The Ice I knew I wanted to use the third person, but I was so used to writing in the first, that I would start writing dialogue and then continue in the first person without noticing. I got to the end of my first day and found I had 2,000 words all in the first person, and it took a few more days to shake off the habit.

5 Dying is easy. 
Comedy is difficult. Okay, this quote isn't quite right, I think both comedy and drama are incredibly hard to write. But I've noticed the difference in my mood at the end of a day's writing. Two thousand words of comedy leaves me moody and irritable and quite difficult to be around. In contrast, after a day of murder and mayhem I'm quite chipper and upbeat, cracking all those jokes I didn't have to think up during the day!

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