An Interview with Author Miriam Drori

Born and raised in London, Miriam Drori has spent most of her life in Jerusalem, where she married and raised three children. She has worked in computer programming and technical writing, and now spends her time writing fiction, reading, hiking, dancing and touring.

No bio of Miriam is complete without mention of her passion to raise awareness of social anxiety. Not all her writing includes it, but she’s ready to handle it when it butts in.

Q: Can you sum up Style and the Solitary in 20 words or less?

Murder in a Jerusalem office. The suspect can’t stand up for himself. Luckily, one person believes in him.

Q: What inspired you to write this book?

Probably all of these statements:

  • Our laws are made for people who can talk. I wonder what happens if they can’t, or if they’re struck dumb in a frightening situation.
  • Most people have a warped opinion of so-called ’loners’, created by the publicity of a tiny minority.
  • I live in a beautiful city that I love to show off in my writing.

Belief can make all the difference.

Q: Which of the characters did you find the most challenging to write?

I had a look through my list of characters in the novel, and I don’t see one that was particularly challenging. I think they’re all based on people I’ve met or observed over the years. Perhaps that’s what helped to make the writing of them fairly straightforward.

Q: Do you have a favorite character in the book?

Asaf is close to my heart because of his internal struggles, but I love feisty Nathalie, who is determined to do what she believes is right and refuses to be swayed by anyone.

Q: You’ve published a number of short-fiction and poems. Do you have a favorite among them? What makes it special to you?

As far as I’m concerned, the poems I’ve had published are flukes. I still insist that I’m not a poet. Of my short stories, I like them all, but I’m most proud of the latest, Gruesome in Golders Green, which marks a change in style and length. The story sits at the head of a two-volume anthology of dark and wonderful stories, the proceeds of which are donated to charity. It’s called Dark London and was published by Darkstroke in 2020.

Q: You’ve also done some non-fiction writing, around the topic of social anxiety. What makes you passionate about that subject?

Social anxiety is the reason why I write. After discovering the name in 2002 and realising that it applied to me, I joined an online forum for ‘sufferers’ and learned a lot through interacting with the members. In particular, I learned that it’s much more common than most people think, that many sufferers, before discovering the name, believed they were alone with the problem, and that ignorance and lack of understanding causes too much unnecessary distress. In a bid to alleviate all of those, I became passionate about raising awareness of social anxiety. For me, the obvious way to do this was by writing, and so my book, Social Anxiety Revealed, was born. The book explains social anxiety from many different viewpoints, and is intended for everyone, because everyone knows or has encountered someone who lives with this problem. Social anxiety has also wormed its way into some of my fiction writing.

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Q: What inspires you to write?

I guess I’ve just answered this question. In general, I see writing as a way of enabling readers to view situations in different ways and from different points of view, as well as providing stories they can enjoy.

Q: Is there a message or common theme in Style and the Solidarity you want readers to grasp?

My primary goal, when writing a story, is to tell a gripping tale in an interesting way. I want readers to enjoy what they’re reading. But messages always turn up and tend to make readers rethink some of their opinions. I’ve mentioned the messages in Style and the Solidarity in previous questions.

Q: What is on your current reading list?

I’m currently reading Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None. I have a long list of books to be read, many of them by the amazing authors published by my publisher, Darkstroke.

Q: What is your next writing project?

I have started writing a sequel to Style and the Solidarity, but had to put that aside for various reasons. There are also several other projects awaiting my attention – a short story, a possible collaboration, a rewriting of my debut novel followed by its sequel, and more.

Q: Where can readers connect with you (website, social media, etc)?

Of course. Website and blog, Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Pinterest, Instagram, Wattpad.

Q: Any closing remarks?

Thank you so much, Heidi, for your questions and for taking an interest in my new novel. It will be launched on 26th April and can be pre-ordered now from Amazon.

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