Coffee break exercise: Threat


28 February 2020
Draw on a fear or paranoia to create a sense of impending doom in this week's creative writing exercise

For a few moments, think of possible causes of threat. Violence? Pandemic? Civil disruption? Or something else? Pick one.

Now pick a viewpoint character and give them a name, age and one-line description (ie, Selena, 34, teacher, single parent).

Spend three minutes asking the question 'what if' and imagining how your chosen threat could escalate and what the effect it would have on your viewpoint character.

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For ten minutes, write in your viewpoint character's voice as they describe the impact of the gathering threat on their life.


Read crime writer Dominic Nolan's advice on ratcheting up the tension in your fiction.