Bookselling Across The Pond

I’ve just gotten home from my UK book tour. It’s only five a.m. and I should be sleeping, but instead I’m sitting here blogging because … well, because jet lag is hell. This was my third trip across the pond, and as always, I came away with some fascinating tidbits of information. Well, I find […]

Edgar Amazement

This evening, after a bad day of writing (translation: everything that I set down on paper stank) I turned on my computer to check my email. And discovered message after message with the subject line: “Congratulations.” They were emails from my wonderful fellow writers sending me best wishes on my Edgar Award nomination for “Best […]

No Blogging for a Few Weeks

No blogging for a few weeks, as I’ll be traveling in the UK on book tour. As always, my biggest pleasure in travel is the food, and I’ve already managed to snag a few recommendations for Chinese restaurants in London. Plus I hope to revisit a few favorite Indian restaurants as well.Oh, and I plan […]


My cover contest page is up, with all 38 entries, and here’s your chance to choose your favorite cover design and decide the winner! ( We authors always love to whine about how bad our covers are, but when you ask as to come up with a better design, most of us are clueless. So […]

Don’t Ask Me What Happens Next. I’m Just The Author.

I’m getting mentally psyched up for my upcoming UK book tour for VANISH, and trying to anticipate the questions I’ll be asked by interviewers. There’s always the inevitable one, of course: “Where did you get the idea for this book?” But very few interviewers follow it up with the next logical question: “How did you […]

The Secret Life of a Bestselling Author

For some reason, a lot of people seem to think that once you hit the bestseller lists your life changes. You drink a lot of champagne, eat a lot of caviar, go to a lot of fancy schmancy parties with publishing bigwigs. I’m here to tell the truth. Tonight, I ate ramen for dinner. Yes, […]

A Tribute to Ramona

I am in tears as I write this. I woke up this morning to heartbreaking news. Radio host Art Bell’s beloved wife Ramona has died of an asthma attack. In their fifteen years of marriage, Art and Ramona had not been apart for a single day. That’s how devoted they were to each other. Now, […]

Attack of the ‘Bots, and Other Website Issues

If anyone’s checking in on my guestbook, you’ll notice an alarming number of entries with no message, no name, just a referring website. According to my webmeister, I’m being attacked by internet ‘bots who’ve noticed the enormous number of hits my site garnered a few weeks ago after the Art Bell show (35,000 in one […]

Using Tess Gerritsen Novels in the Science Classroom

I’ve received a number of queries from high school and college teachers around the country who tell me they’ve used my books to illustrate scientific principles in their classrooms. Many of them ask which of my books are particularly useful for science classrooms, and which topics they cover. So for science teachers everywhere (and I […]

On the Air with Art Bell

On Monday, my sales index for VANISH took a sudden jump, and I know exactly why. I’d just spent three hours on the radio show “Coast to Coast AM”, hosted by Art Bell. ( For those of you who aren’t insomniacs, Art’s late-night show, heard around the world, features weird and fascinating subjects ranging […]

Blogger to Blogger

Monica Jackson reacts to my latest blog about race and publishing: “But Tess misses the point that only because she’s Asian, she has the choice to write white characters and to be marketed as mainstream to whites.” Black authors, she points out, don’t always have the option. And she’s absolutely right. I count myself as […]

Back to a Delicate Subject: Race and Publishing.

I recently received an email from an African-American novelist who was troubled that her latest book was going to be marketed solely to the AA niche market — even though the story itself did not specify the race of its characters, and could just as easily have been marketed as mainstream fiction. When she objected, […]

Cranking Them Out

One of the questions I most frequently get asked at book signings, at cocktail parties, even at my local coffee shop, is: “Are you working on another book?” The answer, of course, is always yes. There’s never a day when I’m not working on the next one. And that sometimes inspires the follow-up comment, “Boy, […]

“Why Don’t Men Read Books by Women?” (Part 2)

Although I discussed this topic a few months ago, it recently came up again, over on Sarah Weinman’s wonderful blogsite, “Confessions of an Idiosyncratic Mind.” ( She cites a review in the Washington Post of Sue Grafton’s mystery series. The reviewer, Patrick Anderson (yes, the same infamous reviewer I’ve talked about before) wrote: “If Grafton’s […]

Once a Dork, Always a Dork.

Some of us are destined to spend our lives feeling like social misfits, the uncool kids who were lucky to scrounge up a date, any date, to the senior prom. And then spent the whole evening standing alone by the punchbowl. I’m thinking about my own inherent dorkiness right now, after having had one of […]

“Dear Author: about that dumb error you made on page …”

I doubt there’s an author alive who hasn’t received a scolding by some alert reader for committing the unpardonable sin of — well, making mistakes in our books. Author Michael Palmer cheerfully talks about his medical thriller where tumbleweeds appeared in Colorado. Gun aficionados love to point out the numerous novels by various authors where […]

Murder is Easy. Sex is Hard.

At the moment, I’m struggling to write a love scene. As a former romance writer, this ought to be a snap, right? Wrong. I’m reminded, once again, that these are the most difficult scenes of all to write. There’s a great blog on this over at:, where PJ Parrish asks: why do so many […]

Flowers for Vanish

More flowers for VANISH, this time from Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine…While some authors use forensics in a very limited way simply as the entry for their hero to join the action, Gerritsen makes it an integral part of her story, so that Isless professional skills and the insights she provides are truly critical to solving […]

How much is a writer worth?

I know that it’s not polite to talk about money but what the heck. I like numbers. And I’ve got Chinese blood. While I hate to play into stereotypes, the truth is, most of us Chinese Americans are pretty blunt about monetary figures. (When I first introduced my soon-to-be-husband to my grandmother, the first thing […]

And sometimes, they throw flowers…

Andrew Gulli, the editor of THE STRAND MAGAZINE, has named VANISH as one of his favorite reads of 2005.