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Writing Domestic Noir Fiction by Nadine Hill

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briefcase and laptop

What exactly is ‘domestic noir’?

It’s a genre of fiction writing first termed by the British author Julia Crouch in 2013, and she is now hailed as the ‘Queen of Domestic Noir!’ It is a subgenre of the crime / thriller categories of fiction writing and it perfectly describes the style of novel I am currently creating!

Like a lot of people, I have held a lifetime ambition to write a book. I actually achieved this 12 years ago when I wrote my first book which became an Amazon best-seller (business category), it was a highly targeted non-fiction work, and I wrote and released a second book several years later with the same publisher, this time a more general guide to time management. Having two books published was and still is, an achievement but it isn’t the same as writing fiction.

I’d always wanted to craft a story, weave in several points of view and make people think. I find it intriguing how people can experience the same event and have wildly different perspectives on it, and this curiosity about the human experience and our thought patterns and habitual behaviours is what is driving my book. I find that in life in general, people will show you who they are and you should believe them. We all have leakage that emits what we really think, whether we say a word or not. Nobody believes that they are bad or evil, there is always some justification to their behaviour (in their heads anyway!) But then in society we also have consensus on how we expect most people to behave in a social or private setting, and sometimes what goes on in private is a completely different story to what is portrayed in public.

All of these themes of human behaviour and our personal relationships are fascinating to me, and what better setting to explore them, where the stakes are at their highest, than in the familial setting? This is domestic noir.

I’m excited to be working on this novel which has plenty of pace, twists and turns. I’m planting plot bombs which will explode in later chapters and blindside the characters involved. The story is being told in an everyday setting, real life, which I think adds extra chills because it could happen to you.

After book one is complete then I already have an outline for book two and I know who the characters are going to be, but I will really need to develop those characters into living, breathing people, so that will be task one!

Until then, I’m hitting my daily word count and will share more on social media when it’s done. But can I also say a ‘Thank you’ to the Gods of blogging, because working on this blog and other freelance writing projects over the last 12 years, has instilled in me a discipline to show up at my desk each day and write. Blogging has built that muscle and this is the kind of habitual behaviour that gets novels written. It was Steve Jobs in his 2005 commencement address who said:
“You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future”

It’s true that every experience and every lesson learned creates your future. My excitement for creating fiction in this genre is pointing me toward that future. I have shared a screenshot above of my current Instagram profile. Ignore the profile picture, it’s way out of date, but the words have been updated and I think they perfectly sum up the theme for all my books.

My quote about domestic noir:

“I create a scene of domestic bliss.
…Then rip it to shreds.”

~Nadine Hill, Author. 2021.

Article Categories:
Books · Writing

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