I’d like to thank Katie for having me here today! I love the idea behind her new book, DANGEROUS SECRETS.
Secrets make for intriguing, suspenseful stories. But I’ve found the reason behind the secret is almost always more interesting than the secret itself. If the hero’s an uber-soldier masquerading as an accountant, the why of this is the fun part. Speaking of fun, there are three reasons we like secrets in stories.
The first reason is that if someone has a secret, they often end up in bizarre situations trying to protect that secret. Take the last season of Friends when Chandler and Monica began dating but didn’t want anyone to know. I remember a funny scene where Joey walked in on Chandler in a bubble bath, because Monica ducked under the water. Good thing the woman didn’t drown.
Or even better, the season on Buffy the Vampire Slayer when Spike meets Buffy’s mom and realizes the woman doesn’t know Buffy’s true calling. When Joyce asks Buffy who Spike is, Buffy lies and says they’re in a band together. Joyce asks Spike what he does, and he deadpans, “Well…I sing.”
The second reason is that secrets give us insight into our characters. Why didn’t Monica want anyone
to know about her relationship with Chandler? Was it because she was afraid of what they’d think?
Or maybe it was because she’d shared the details of all her former relationships with the whole gang…and
those never worked out. Holding this close to the vest might have been Monica’s way of saying…hey,
this is the guy.
The final reason is that no matter how hard a person tries, the secret always comes out. This big reveal is often the climax of a story, the good stuff, the moment we’ve been building toward since page one. My heroine in FATED is an empath, a fact she tried to keep secret her entire life. She even tries to convince herself that she’s not gifted. But she pretty much has to not only accept who she is but reveal her secret to save herself, which not only frees her but shows her trust in the hero.
The truth always comes out.
I’d love to give away one copy of FATED to a commenter today. So, do secrets always come out?