DR Zombie's Interview
Dr Tess Gerritsen,
NY Times Best selling Author of Medical Suspense!
Ten Question Interview with Dr Tess Gerritsen author
Bestselling Medical Suspense Novels:
Dr Gerritsen Do you Believe in
Pure Evil ?
It depends on what your definition of "evil"
is. In my own mind, evil is the existence of pure, unadulterated
self-interest with no regard for the lives of others. In other words, it's
undistilled selfishness. That said, the world is full of evil! There
are many people who would torment others just for thrills -- without the
slightest twinge of guilt.
DR Zombie: Why are people so Fascinated with the
Dr Gerritsen -- Because we are fascinated with everything that could hurt
us. I don't know anyone who isn't interested in sharks or dinosaurs or
poisonous snakes -- maybe we don't want to be around them, but we can't help
paying attention when they're around. It's merely self-preservation.
If you go into a reptile house of any zoo, you'll notice that people cluster
around the poisonous or deadly snakes -- and bypass the harmless garter
DR Zombie:Serial Killers tend to be Males, Usually not
burly Friday the 13th or ultra cool Hanibal Lectors
but rather kind of
shy types , Nerds. Why is this?
Dr Gerritsen -- I'm not sure anyone has really answered the question of why they
are far more likely to be males. There are female serial killers on
record, but their methods of murder tend to be quieter and more subtle --
they use poisons, for instance. Part of the reason for this male/female
disproportion may be that many serial killers do it for the sexual thrill.
They get turned on by absolute control over another human being. And men
seem more susceptible to these sorts of emotions. As far as serial killers
tending to be nerds, that's not entirely true. The nerds are probably the
more effective killers, as they're organized and able to elude law enforcement
for longer periods of times. There are also disorganized killers -- the
ones who are mentally unstable, and far more easily captured because they make
DR Zombie: Why do women Fall in Love with Serial
Dr Gerritsen -- Some women are fascinated by power and fame, and they may be
drawn to convicted killers for this reason. Some of the most notorious
murderers in prison have been known to receive massive amounts of fan mail from
women. I suspect that these are women who have no other way to touch fame,
and they get a thrill out of corresponding with someone who has achieved
notoriety by any means possible.
DR Zombie: What are some of your
Dr Gerritsen-- I am an eclectic reader -- I read across genres, both fiction
and nonfiction. The latest book I'm raving about is OVER THE EDGE: DEATH
IN GRAND CANYON by Michael P. Ghiglieri and Thomas M. Myers. It's
nonfiction, about the many people who have died there. It fits perfectly
into my own interests -- dramatic and informational.
DR Zombie:Is the Bird Flu
the next Pandemic?
Dr Gerritsen-- I suspect so. It scares the hell out of me, because if
it's anything like the last pandemic (the "spanish flu") it will kill upwards of
100 million people around the world. It's currently the greatest threat to
mankind I can think of.
DR Zombie: Your views on the use of "Gore" in Films and
Novels -- can it elicit Terror?
Dr Gerritsen-- gore itself doesn't elicit terror. As a matter of fact, I
think that gore onscreen (or on the page) tends to just desensitive us.
Terror is inspired by the ANTICIPATION of gore. As an example, I think of
the movie "Alien," one of my all-time favorite films. The most terrifying
moments were the search for the escaped alien -- not the horrible deaths
themselves. And the most nail-biting moments on film for me came from the
followup, "Aliens", when the Marines were sent in to find the missing
colonists. Before a single body falls, before a single death occurs, the
audience is riveted to their seats, hands sweating. I myself find that I
avoid "active" gore in my books (i.e., I don't show the actual killings on the
page). The scary stuff happens when you know the killer is stalking, you
know the victim is in danger, but nothing has HAPPENED YET!
DR Zombie:A few Your
Favorite Horror Movies ?
Dr Gerritsen-- "The Body Snatchers" (the original), "Alien," "The Omen,"
DR Zombie: Are any Movies in the works? and who would you have
Dr Gerritsen-- Although I've sold the movie rights to HARVEST, BLOODSTREAM,
GRAVITY, and THE SURGEON, no films have yet been made of them. I have no
idea who would play Jane Rizzoli. But I do see Maura Isles being played by
Catherine Zeta Jones!
DR Zombie: Please Tell us abought your Next
Dr Gerritsen-- My next book is VANISH, which goes on sale August 23. It's
the next in the Rizzoli/Isles series, and it's about a corpse zipped in a body
bag who suddenly ... wakes up!