“Certainly one of the surprising truths of having a book published is realizing that your book is as open to interpretation as an abstract painting. People bring their own beliefs and attitudes to your work, which is thrilling and surprising at the same time.” – Marisha Pessl
A native of Michigan who grew up in North Carolina, Pessl was born on this date in 1977 and started her writing part time while working as a financial consultant at PricewaterhouseCoopers. She had two failed attempts at novels before breaking out with her 2006 bestseller Special Topics in Calamity Physics about the relationship between a daughter and her controlling, charismatic father. In 2013 her book Night Film also made the New York Times Bestseller List.
A graduate of New York’s Barnard College, Pessl graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a degree in English Literature and said growing up as “a devoted reader” helped develop her skills as a writer. Now the mother of two, she is working next on a psychological suspense Young Adult novel, tentatively scheduled for 2018.
“I believe writers need to be chameleons, or like Meryl Streep, who can play all sorts of characters,” she said. “A good writer should be able to cross gender lines and people of all social classes. So for me, writing from a male point of view would be a great challenge. (One) that I would look forward to taking on.”
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