There are many ways to evoke emotion, and while music and the visual arts are high on my list, words are my favorite medium.
I came to understand the true power of words a dozen or so years ago, while earning a graduate degree in counseling. It was a eureka moment when, during the course of my classes, I realized how much self-talk (what one says to oneself) goes unnoticed day-to-day. We are constantly sending ourselves feedback, but are often unaware we are doing it…or of the consequences if those messages are wrong or negative. The messages we send ourselves, positive or negative, shape our self-image, attitude, and behavior.
What does this glimpse of psychology have to do with the book I released this week, you might ask?
In my Mindhunters series, I’ve enjoyed exploring the psyches of my characters—even the twisted minds of serial killers. In my new release, DEADLY BONDS (Mindhunters, Book 3), Dr. Holt Patterson is a profiler, or mindhunter, with expertise in the psychology of killers. Part of profiling the killer involves figuring out why he or she is committing murder, which means getting into his or her head. In this story, the killer, who calls himself Toxin, believes he is doing the world a favor when he kills. He tells himself he’s being noble. He talks himself up until, in his mind, he’s achieved superhero status.
Holt, the true hero of the story, uses words to draw the killer out, sending out a different kind of message that contradicts Toxin’s view of himself. Publicly, Holt calls Toxin an animal, and several other terms Holt knows will strike at the killer’s self-image. By understanding the psyche of the killer he hunts, he can twist the right words to lure him. Words are indeed powerful.
Describe a time that words held power over you. Was it a positive or negative experience, and was it all in your head? What pep talks do you give yourself to get through your day?
If you’d like the opportunity to win a digital copy of one of my books, pop over to the second part of my “Power of” blogs for a look at “The Power of Bonds” at Just Romantic Suspense. Comment there by the end of the day (July 24th) for a chance to win your choice of Mindhunters books.
A dedicated profiler. Dr. Holt Patterson has thrown himself into his work since his wife’s death, and his relationship with his young son, Theo, is suffering. He’s caught in an impossible choice—how can he make the world a safer place for his son without sacrificing valuable family time?
An unrequited love. Sara Burns, the director at Theo’s prestigious academy, once loved Holt Patterson, but he was her best friend’s husband. Now a decade has passed, and Sara realizes that her feelings are just as strong—but how can she act on them without betraying her friend’s memory?
A terrifying killer. A violent man develops an interest in Sara, and sends a body instead of flowers to get her attention. Holt is determined to keep her safe. But the killer is much closer than they expect…
Anne Marie has always been fascinated by people—inside and out—which led to degrees in Biology, Chemistry, Psychology, and Counseling. Her passion for understanding the human race is now satisfied by her roles as mother, wife, daughter, sister, and award-winning author of romantic suspense.
She writes to reclaim her sanity.