Interview with Emelie Schepp

EmelieS_nyPhoto: Helén Karlsson

Welcome to TheCrimeHouse Emelie!

A lot has happened since our last interview. You have gone from being a self-publisher to having a publisher, you have sold almost 500,000 novels and to 29 countries. The third novel in the series about prosecutor Jana Berzelius was recently published in Sweden. Congratulations on all of your successes! And now we have some questions…

What is the biggest difference between self-publishing and having a publisher?

When I was a self-publisher I had to find the right people who could help me with editing, printing, distribution, etc. Now that I have a publisher I have all experts under one roof which is a big plus. Since I like to have control from idea to finished book I am still as much involved in the process as before, and I will always be. I accepted the offer to belong to a traditional publisher because I saw the strength in combining my experience as an entrepreneur with Wahlström & Widstrand’s experience in the publishing industry. We are an excellent team and we work hard together to get my books read.

How has your life changed since you’ve achieved you success as an author?

I wrote Marked for Life in secret and in my spare time. No one except my husband, Henrik, knew that I was in front of the computer writing a book every evening. Today I have the privilege to be able to write fulltime. The mornings are holy. That is when I write the best. In the afternoons I read what I wrote in morning and make changes. Then I do all the other things that are needed: interviews, social media updates, planning attendances at festivals, events, book signings, etc. My life is very varies and contains a lot of travelling at the moment. It is fantastic to travel all around the world and meet my readers in different countries. I would never have been able to do that if I had given up on my dream of becoming an author. But I didn’t give up, instead I made my dream come true, and that’s what I’m most proud of.

What do you like the best/least about the character Jana Berzelius?

Jana Berzelius is a prosecutor with a complex past, which drives her to break the law. I think many readers are drawn to Jana’s person. She could probably exist in real life, but she is definitely balancing on the brink of what is possible. Her double-character makes her interesting to write about and that’s what I like the best about her. On one hand she is a successful prosecutor that does everything it takes to maintain law and order. On the other hand she does not hesitate to break laws and rules to protect her dark past. What I don’t really like about her is that she is not interested in other people and does nothing to hide it.

How many books have you planned to write in the series about Jana Berzelius?

As long as readers want to know more about Jana Berzelius and the other characters I will continue to write books about them.

What are your plans for the summer? Work or vacation?

Since my third novel was published recently I will work quite a bit this summer with book signings and events. I will attend Crime Time in Visby among other things. Since last year’s festival was such a success my expectations are very high this year. I look forward to meeting all crime fiction enthusiasts, colleagues and people in the business. Above all I look forward to meeting the readers, meeting them is one of my favorite things.

What will you read on the beach?

Crime fiction and biographies. I have already started collecting books for the summer and in addition to plenty of Swedish authors I will also get to know Jørn Lier Horst and Caroline Kepnes.

What questions would you ask yourself that no one has asked in an interview yet, and what would you respond?

You write about death, what’s your relationship with death?

I am scared to death of death, and suffer from incurable death anxiety.

What’s taboo for you?

Banana as a pizza topping.

Are you a morning or evening person?

Morning person. I love to get up disturbingly early, to my husband’s chagrin.

Thank you for taking the time to answer our questions and good luck with future projects!

Note: This interview has been translated from Swedish.

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