A Q&A with Kara Thomas, the author of LITTLE MONSTERS
Question: Little Monsters is one of, if not the most gripping YA thriller I’ve read this year. How do you approach plotting this type of book, so that the conclusion comes as such a surprise to readers?
Thank you so much! I always plot my books backwards—I know what the resolution is, even if I don’t know exactly how the characters are going to get there. Sometimes the end will evolve as I’m writing, if I’m finding that the twists and turns don’t really hold up and I’m afraid the reader won’t be surprised. The most important thing to me about endings is that they don’t remind the reader of something they’ve already read.
Question: I think Broken Falls was just the perfect setting for this novel. What do you think it is about small towns that make for such perfect settings for mystery/thriller novels?
I’m always drawn to small town settings, because I think there’s something really scary and claustrophobic about the idea that the killer is someone the main character knows.
Question: There are some pretty intense, and sometimes dark, scenes in this book. Were any of them difficult for you to write?
Getting into Bailey’s head for some of her journal entries was difficult. Without spoilers, I can say that her mind goes to a scary, dark place, and I knew that a lot of readers would find her very unlikable. I had to get over making her “likable” for the sake of staying true to the intensity of the emotions she was feeling at that point in the story.
Question: I absolutely loved the urban legend that you incorporated into this story. Do you have any favorite urban legends that you drew inspiration from?
I’ve always been obsessed with urban legends! I basically grew up on Snopes.com. Slender Man was definitely part of the inspiration for the Red Woman in Little Monsters. I’m so horrified and drawn to how that legend has taken shape over the Internet.
Question: What are some YA novels that you would recommend to readers who are fans of Little Monsters?
When I Am Through With You by Stephanie Kuehn and Last Seen Leaving by Caleb Roehrig. Also anything by Courtney Summers, especially Some Girls Are and All The Rage.
This Q&A was originally posted on the blog YA & WINE.