Elisabeth Elo

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Los Angeles, The United States
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September 2013


Elisabeth Elo is the author of NORTH OF BOSTON, chosen by Booklist as a Best Crime Novel Debut of the Year. Published in six countries, it was also an Indie Next selection and a Book of the Month / Literary Guild Selection. Elisabeth’s second suspense novel, FINDING KATARINA M., is forthcoming in March 2019.

Elisabeth grew up in Boston, attended Brown University, and earned a PhD in American Literature at Brandeis. She worked as a children's magazine editor, a high-tech product manager, and a halfway house counselor before starting to write fiction. To learn more, visit www.elisabethelo.com.
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Elisabeth Elo I'm not a chess player, and the connection between the name Kasparov and Pirio's father's hobby didn't even occur to me until you mentioned it! But I …moreI'm not a chess player, and the connection between the name Kasparov and Pirio's father's hobby didn't even occur to me until you mentioned it! But I was aware, of course, that Garry Kasparov is a former World Chess Champion and a leader of the pro-democracy movement in Russia. I figured the name had very good associations, and I also liked the sound of it. Someday I would like to learn to play chess. (I already know how to smoke cigars.) (less)
Elisabeth Elo I've thought about this a lot, and I'd say there are five things that a writer needs to succeed: knowledge, talent, hard work, persistence, luck.

First…more
I've thought about this a lot, and I'd say there are five things that a writer needs to succeed: knowledge, talent, hard work, persistence, luck.

First, you’ve got to read enough to know what a novel is and how it works. It helps to find a book you really like and take it apart to see how it's made, sort of the way a mechanic would take an engine apart to see how the parts fit together. I know that doesn't sound very romantic or artsy, but if you love novels, it's actually sort of fun. You ask yourself, "How did the author DO that? How did they make that transition? How did they create that impression or effect?"

Second, you’ve got to have some basic talent. Talent is different in every person. You may be a wordsmith, or a fantasist, or especially perceptive about other people, or especially observant, or maybe you just have natural storytelling ability. Whatever your innate talent is, you start there. In other words, build on your strengths, and with any luck you'll end up bringing something that’s distinctly your own to life.

Third is hard work. No need to explain this: I don’t know a single person who’s good at what they do who doesn’t work hard.

Fourth is persistence through all the rejections from agents and editors that will probably come your way. (A word of caution: Don’t put yourself out there too soon. Wait until your book is the very best it can be before you start trying to sell it because once it’s been turned down someplace you can’t go back.) I have a long list of failures and near-misses I could share with you, but you probably don't have enough time to hear them all!

Finally, luck—otherwise know as being in the right place at the right time. You can’t control this. When you've got it, it's exhilarating. When you don't, it's heartbreaking. But the more you focus on steps 1 through 4, the greater the chance that things will break your way.

Oh, I forgot one thing: The whole reason we do this is because we love it, right? That's the heart and soul of the thing. Don't let yourself lose the fun of it, ever. Love this crazy art!(less)
Average rating: 3.62 · 1,969 ratings · 458 reviews · 4 distinct worksSimilar authors
North of Boston

3.58 avg rating — 1,728 ratings — published 2014 — 21 editions
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Finding Katarina M.

3.88 avg rating — 219 ratings4 editions
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A Taste of Power

3.52 avg rating — 21 ratings — published 2014 — 2 editions
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Die Frau, die nie fror

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it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 1 rating
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Shine, Pamela! Shine! by Kate Atkinson
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Finding Katarina M. by Elisabeth Elo
"A young woman goes to Doctor Natalie March’s office and in heavily Russian-accented English indicates that they are cousins. She offers sufficient information to confirm to Natalie that she is genuinely who she claims to be. When Natalie explains to " Read more of this review »
Finding Katarina M. by Elisabeth Elo
"This book, both story and writing, held me from the first page. Dr. Natalie March, a successful surgeon in Washington, DC, is confronted with a Russian ballerina claiming to be her cousin. After believing all her life that her grandparents died in St" Read more of this review »
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Shine, Pamela! Shine! by Kate Atkinson
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The Last Word and Other Stories by Graham Greene
"These twelve stories, written and published between 1923 and 1989, are not Greene's best but are certainly representative of his work, themes, experience, and philosophy. Behind each one is the incisive understanding of a mind that has viewed the wor" Read more of this review »
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Careful What You Wish For by Hallie Ephron
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I love the premise of this book. I used to watch that show where a professional organizer decluttered someone’s incredibly cluttered house. I honestly don’t know why I thought that was so fascinating, but it totally was. And now those same weirdly co ...more
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Gretchen by Shannon Kirk
Gretchen
by Shannon Kirk (Goodreads Author)
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If you’re tired of the same old stuff…of every book having to belong to a “genre” so that you can pretty much predict what’s going to happen before you open the cover…
If you wonder what happened to good old gorgeous imagination with a capital I, the
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The Murder List by Hank Phillippi Ryan
The Murder List
by Hank Phillippi Ryan (Goodreads Author)
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Wow! Ryan’s new dazzler is a twisty murder mystery wrapped in a legal thriller. Law-student Rachel North adores her brilliant defense attorney husband. When she’s employed by an equally brilliant prosecutor, who happens to be her husband’s arch-nemes ...more
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Give Me Your Hand by Megan Abbott
Give Me Your Hand
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Elisabeth Elo is now following Kim Ilvento's reviews
More of Elisabeth's books…
“But a bond is a bond. And when you’re young and haven’t yet learned to live in your own solitude, even a destructive bond can seem better than none.”
Elisabeth Elo, North of Boston

“All across the world, people are loyal to their tribe. --- (Pirio)”
Elisabeth Elo, North of Boston

“Your weakness - the weakness of your soft American life - is you think that all people are like you, that reason can explain everything in this world. You expect two plus two to equal four. But it doesn't. It equals whatever the powerful say it does. If they say it equals a hundred and eight, the mathematicians will prove it's so. --- (Milosa Kasparov)”
Elisabeth Elo, North of Boston

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Elisabeth Elo Tracy wrote: "Thanks for adding me, it's great to connect!"
Great to meet you, Tracy!


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Tracy Thanks for adding me, it's great to connect!


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