The Six Year Secret: A Novel
Verner, Stacy Marie
Savannah, Georgia: Savannah College of Art and Design (eLearning)
Thesis (M.F.A.) -- Writing
Savannah College of Art and Design -- Department of Writing
Includes bibliographical references.
"This thesis – which includes the first 23 chapters of a novel that I’ve tentatively titled The Six Year Secret – is an upmarket, literary-leaning psychological and domestic noir thriller. The novel explores the intense, mysterious relationship between three people – a husband, a wife and a mysterious widower – and what, if anything, this relationship has to do with an unsolved hit-and-run committed six years before. When studying similar works over the past two and a half years, I have noticed several writing trends that worked well within this genre: compelling yet flawed characters, a strong sense of place, a shift between character point-of-views, an emphasis on human relationships and a 'dissolving sense of reality' that keeps readers guessing and interested to the very end. I have attempted to incorporate all of these techniques within The Six Year Secret, while also remembering the techniques I’ve learned in my various creative writing classes at SCAD, including: creating fluid and believable dialogue, writing about place as a main character, hooking the reader from the very first chapter, conducting in-depth research, considering a scene from the viewpoint of multiple characters, creating in-depth character sketches, utilizing tension and injecting conflict within every chapter. By activating the writing techniques I’ve learned at SCAD and attempting to emulate the techniques I’ve studied from similar successful writers who came before me, I hope to have created a thesis that is a unique, entertaining and commercially relevant story revolving around characters that, although intensely damaged, are relatable in their motivations and innermost desires: to be loved, seen, understood and remembered. The Six Year Secret, at its core, is ultimately about the fragile and easily manipulated nature of the human mind – and how all of us are just a misstep away from slipping into the dark and murky space situated somewhere between reality and make-believe."
The thesis also includes "Research and References," a brief critical analysis of the growing popularity of thriller fiction, the success of women writers in the genre, and the genre's possible publishing trajectory.
Keywords: marriage, infidelity, aging, guilt, regret, nostalgia, paranoia, jealousy, marriage, mental health, murder
CHAIR: Sanders, Darby
PDF : 183 pages
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