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'I recommend you know where you're going'

1 April 2024

'Some writers start with a sentence and have no idea where it's going. Others know every character's biography. I'm in between. I know the beginning and the end before I start. I recommend you know where you're going. You're a lot freer to twist and turn if you know your destination.

Always ask "What if?" What if you put spyware on your kid's computer, discover something and then your kid disappears? What if you saw your dead husband cuddling your child on your nannycam?'

Harlan Coben has over 80 million books in print. He has written 35 novels including Win, The Boy from the Woods, Tell No One and a young adult series, and is the creator and producer of several Netflix tv dramas and two French mini-series. This excerpt is from the Sunday Times' Culture.