Sara Paretsky

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Sara Paretsky

All but two of Sara Paretsky's novels feature the female PI VI Warshawski, who first appeared in 1982 in Indemnity Only. Her many awards include the Cartier Diamond Dagger Award for lifetime achievement from the British Crime Writers’ Association. In 1986 she created Sisters in Crime, a worldwide organization to support women crime writers, which earned her M. Magazine’s 1987 Woman of the Year award. Paretsky served with then-state senator Obama on the board of Thresholds, which serves Chicago’s mentally ill homeless.   She has mentored teens in Chicago’s most troubled schools, and works closely with literacy and reproductive rights groups.

Interviewed 03 May 2014

Ten words to sum up your working life to date ...

The silent grass-growing mood, I fear, cannot be mine (Melville, in a letter to Hawthorne).

Nine things you can see from where you're sitting ...

* My golden retriever
* A metal sculpture of an owl
* My grandmother’s photo as a member of the 1904 Illinois State girls basketball championship team (the last year that girls were allowed to play in intermural games until Title IX legislation almost 70 years later)
* A straw voodoo doll meant to make me a more creative writer
* A cartoon strip from a 1995 episode of Brenda Starr, when her editor tells her she’s not V I Warshawski
* 2000 essential French verbs, in case I ever actually buckle down to study the language
* A painting, oil on wood, of a view of the Triborough Bridge in New York City through an apartment window
* An Ashanti figurine of a lion, meant to make me more courageous * A needlepoint pillow with a crossword about V I on it

Eight minutes to prepare a meal. What's it going to be ?

Peanut butter on toast and Oban neat.

Seven people you'd like to go for a drink with ...

Bill Clinton (I have actually had drinks with him; his was diet Coke)
Richard Feynman
Alice Roosevelt Longworth
Martina Navratilova
Rafael Nadal
Leon Fleisher
Ziva David

Six things you can't live without ...

Cappuccino, my hat collection, cappuccino, the plush monkey I got for my second birthday, my Golden Retriever, my espresso machine.

Five favourite words ...

My sons are gainfully employed.

Four places you'd run away to ...

Barcelona, Umbria, Lake Louise, Baja.

Three books you've bought recently ...

The Testament of Mary, A Miracle A Universe, Total Chaos.

Two things that make you rant ...

Litter in the parks, the Tea Party.

One thing you'd tell your teenage self ...

Take chances.