I could not be more excited to share that I’ve finally read a thriller that I actually LOVED. As you probably already know from my Most Anticipated May Book Releases list, I had the chance to read The Wife Stalker by Liv Constantine before it is released on May 19th. I could not put the book down and was so invested in the story. I
I was able to interview the two incredible brains that make up Liv Constantine, Lynne and Valerie. These two sisters have written such an insane story that will have you on the edge of your seat the entire time. I am so excited for everyone to read the novel in a week!
AD: So you’re two sisters writing under the pen name Liv Constantine- how did you decide on a pen name? Did you both always have an interest in writing novels?
LC: We’ve always been avid readers and both enjoyed writing. We wrote a novel many years ago together called Circle Dance, and then life took us in different directions. About seven years ago we were both in a place where we wanted to get back to writing and we began collaborating again. When we found a home for The Last Mrs. Parrish, our publisher felt a single name would be less confusing to readers. Liv is taken from our first names Lynne and Valerie.
AD: What is it like writing with your sister? What is the most rewarding and most challenging part of the job?
LC: The great part of collaborating as sisters is that we are best friends as well, so we get to spend a lot of time together, even though we are geographically separated by three states. In many ways, the fact that we share a common history and background is helpful. We do have a great time bouncing story ideas off of each other, going back and forth with “what ifs” and then fleshing things out. When it comes to the actual writing, it’s great to have someone to send a half-written chapter to and say, “I’m a little stuck here. You want to finish this one up for me?” The most challenging part of co-authoring is the editing process, because it’s a tedious, line-by-line exercise and difficult to do with two people.
AD: What was your writing/collaborative process like for The Wife Stalker? Where did the idea for the story come from? Which aspects/characters from the story did you each bring to the table?
LC: Our process has evolved with each book. We usually start with a kernel of an idea and think about how we can twist it. The twist was the first thing we came up with in The Wife Stalker and it actually started as a joke while we were brainstorming. After that, we draw the characters together and assign each other scenes to write. We email each other every day and FaceTime at the end of the day to discuss the scenes. We are both intricately involved in every chapter and every character.
AD: I love that the story is set in Westport! What made Westport so fitting for the setting? You mention places like The Spotted Horse and Brook’s Brothers in the story. Why did you keep the specific names of these locations rather than creating new names?
LC: Westport is a beautiful town and it was a perfect fit for the story because of its sophisticated vibe yet small town feel. When we set the story in a real town/city (as opposed to one we’ve invented), we like to use the places that really exist there. For people who live there or who may have visited/vacationed, it makes it much more visual when they’re reading. And it’s always nice to be able to give a shout out to local businesses and attractions. Lynne lived in Westport for ten years so it was fun for her to revisit many of the places she used to frequent.
AD: Which character was your favorite to write and why? Which character would you say is the most dynamic? Which character shows the most personal growth?
LC: Piper was the most fun to write as her philosophies can be a bit out there and we had a lot of fun with that. Stelli is the most dynamic character, he practically burst from the pages. It’s hard to say which character had the most growth without giving anything away so let’s just say everyone comes to some sort of realization by the end.
AD: As crazy as it is, we currently are facing a global pandemic. Has this had any impact on the book release. Has it slowed the process down in anyway? Do you feel as author’s you have had to adapt to the current situation and come up with new creative ideas for a book launch during this time? If so, how?
LC: It’s definitely changed things for us as it has for most of the world. The Wife Stalker publishes on May 19th, and our book tour was set before the pandemic hit in the U.S. Naturally all of those in-person appearances have been cancelled and turned into live virtual events through Zoom, Facebook Live, Skype and Podcast. We’ll all be virtual experts by the end of the “tour”. The interesting thing is that we are now able to interact with more book stores and libraries than we’d planned since it doesn’t involve flying to each city, so we’re excited to be able to talk to more readers.
AD: What’s next for Liv Constantine?
We just turned our fourth book into our editor and are in the creative stages of developing book 5.
Additional praise for The Wife Stalker, in case you don’t believe me!
“A twisty, engrossing house of mirrors…”
—Lisa Unger, New York Times bestselling author
“Impossible to put down!”
—Megan Miranda, #1 New York Times bestselling author
“A read-through-the-night thriller that mesmerizes to the final page.”
—Samantha Downing, USA Today and Sunday Times bestselling author