Internationally bestselling author Tess Gerritsen took an unusual route to a writing career. A graduate of Stanford University, Tess went on to medical school at the University of California, San Francisco, where she was awarded her M.D.
While on maternity leave from her work as a physician, Gerritsen began to write fiction. She wrote and published nine romantic suspense novels before turning to medical thrillers with Harvest in 1996. Shes since written 12 more medical thrillers, eight of which feature Det. Rizzoli and Dr. Isles. This series of novels featuring inspired the television series Rizzoli & Isles starring Angie Harmon and Sasha Alexander.
Gerritsen books have been top-5 bestsellers in the United States and abroad. She has won both the Nero Wolfe Award and the Rita Award. Now retired from medicine, Gerritsen lives in Maine and writes full time.
This biography was last updated on 12/04/2010.
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Essay by Tess Gerritsen, author of The Apprentice and The Surgeon
"Aren't you afraid to be married to her?"
This is a question my husband has been asked again and again, by people who've read my books. They think that anyone who writes such dark and twisted thrillers, who spends her days obsessed with serial killers and blood spatters and autopsies, cannot possibly be normal. That creepy books are surely written by creepy people.
I think my readers are just a little disappointed when they finally meet me, and instead of the vampireish woman they've imagined, I turn out to sport no fangs, have no nervous tics, and freely admit that I'm afraid of guns. And the dirt under my fingernails is from gardening, not grave-digging. In short, I appear to be perfectly normal.
Well, as normal as anyone could be who hears a serial killer talking in her head.
But just as one doesn't need to give birth to be an obstetrician, you don't need to be homicidal to write convincingly about murder. The human imagination is capable of both wondrous dreams and terrible nightmares. As a writer, I'm fascinated by the nightmares. I'm driven by the same curiosity that compelled me, as a child, to prod anthills ...
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