"Smart, witty, and delightfully unpredictable, Susan Israel's Over My Live Body is a truly wonderful debut. Highly recommended." – Doug Corleone, author of Good as Gone
About the book:Delilah is accustomed to people seeing her naked. As a nude model – a gig that keeps food on the table while her career as a sculptor takes off – it comes with the territory. But Delilah has never before felt this vulnerable. Because Delilah has an admirer. Someone who is paying a great deal of attention to her. And he just might love her to death. The debut of a shockingly fresh voice in suspense fiction, Over My Live Body will work its way inside of you.
Interview with Susan IsraelSusan, how long have you been writing and how did you start?
I wrote my first (really bad!) "novel" when I was in 7th grade and wrote even before that; it was a way to cope with feeling bullied. I thought about writing professionally when I was in high school, but had no outlet and little encouragement, save for an English teacher who recognized that the sentences I wrote as exercises had a plot and I had the temerity to name one of the characters Jane Austen! It wasn't until I went to college that I dove in head-first and found an audience.
What's the story behind the title Over My Live Body?
I didn't have any title per se when I started writing what would turn out to be Over My Live Body, I referred to it as "work in progress." For a short time I gave it the working title "The Object Of My Affection" but that didn't stick either. There was a movie I hadn't seen by that title and I didn't want it to be confused with that. Furthermore, since the book is written from Delilah's point of view, I wanted a more Delilah-centric title, and Over My Live Body fit in more ways than one.
How did you create the plot for this book?
I was a by-the-seat-of-your-pants writer, writing every day and letting the characters do as they willed, and when I had the finished product, I went back and revised and polished. I had a synopsis before I started writing my second, but to a certain extent, the characters still take over.
Is your book based on real events?
Nothing in my book is based on actual events, but some similar incidents have occurred in the course of writing the books, a case of "life imitates art." I listen to 24/7 news a lot and punctuate my narrative with what I hope are realistic references to daily police activity in the city; sometimes all too realistic. But none of the incidents in my books are based on anything real.
Are you like any of your characters?
I would say I'm a lot like Delilah except she is younger and taller.
Who are your favorite authors?
There are many but I'll touch on a few. When I'm reading, I love a sense of place as well as characters and plot, whether it be fiction or nonfiction. One of my favorite books has always been A Moveable Feast, though Hemingway isn't my absolute favorite author. I would include F. Scott Fitzgerald, who also captured the 20s so well, a decade I wish I had lived in. For mysteries, I love the Paris settings and characters of Cara Black. I'm a big fan of Peter Matthiessen, who I had the good fortune to have as a writing professor.
Where and when do you prefer to do your writing?
My favorite time to write is at night, when it's generally quieter outside, when the sun isn't in my eyes, when there's less extraneous noise that I can't control. (My own TV or radio doesn't bother me.) Daylight Saving Time is not my best friend, though I like the weather that goes with it. I wrote all of Over My Live Body in a generic computer cluster, but that cluster doesn't exist any more.
Where's home for you?
Home is where my dog is.
Where is your favorite library and what do you love about it?
My favorite library is Yale's Sterling Memorial Library (except during periods of renovation every few years). I love the reading rooms with the cushy leather chairs and the mezzanine floors of the stacks where you can literally hide from the world and write or read something you never knew existed. I feel safe and cloistered there.
What's your favorite candy bar?
I love Lindt bars, especially dark chocolate, and Sky Bar. But especially anything Lindt.
About the author:
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