Mary Torjussen - Editor
Mary Torjussen has an MA in Creative Writing from Liverpool John Moores University and writes psychological suspense. She loves to write about women who find themselves in a perilous situation where the danger is close to home. She lives near Liverpool and likes to use local settings for her novels.
She was previously a teacher who took a gamble when redundancy was offered, deciding she’d take time off work to write a novel. Luckily this paid off when her first novel, Gone Without a Trace (2016) was simultaneously bought by Headline in the UK and Penguin in the US. Ecosse bought the TV option and it was also translated into nine languages. Her follow up novels are The Girl I Used to Be (2018) and The Closer You Get (2020).
She gives talks in bookshops, libraries and to students on creative writing courses, and has been on panels at CrimeFest in Bristol, ThrillerFest in New York, Bouchercon in Toronto and Iceland Noir in Reykjavík.
- Chris S.
- Jonathan B.
WHY WE LOVE MARY
Mary is prominent in the crime-thriller writing scene and has travelled the globe furthering this passion and experience. It is for this reason she brings a well-rounded perspective to her edits and is clued in on a variety of writing techniques that are important to, not only crime, but all commercial fiction. Her books have been translated into three languages and demonstrate she knows how to elevate manuscripts to have widespread appeal – this shines through in her tremendously observant reports. Knowing what works and what doesn’t is integral to any author, and Mary is a wizard with character, plotting and pace. The key ingredients to any gripping book.
WHAT MARY SAYS ABOUT EDITING
Editing is something I love most in writing. The blank page is both exhilarating and terrifying, but once the words are down, there’s something so creative about editing it into shape. We can be too close to our own work, especially if we’ve spent a really long time on it and the story’s changed many times; it’s great to get another perspective from someone who has respect for the work you’ve done and can give kind and constructive criticism.
I love to look at other writers’ work in the raw. With each editorial project my goal is to see what the novel is actually about. Does the story arc work? Are the characters convincing? Whose point of view is the most interesting? Most of all: do I want to keep reading and if not, why not?
I also love line edits, where I can suggest changes line by line which would make such a difference to a book. After teaching for so many years, I’m also a wizard proof-reader!
What Mary works on
Agent Submission Pack assessment
Genres Mary specialises in
Mary's published books
Gone Without A Trace
You come home from work and your boyfriend has vanished. It’s as if he never existed.
Every one of his belongings has gone. He hasn’t been at work. His phone number is dead.
It’s like you never even knew him.
But that’s not possible, is it?
And there is worse still to come.
Because just as you are searching for him someone is also watching you.
“Plays with all of your expectations. Not to be missed!” Shari Lapena, The Couple Next Door
“A twist that will knock your socks off” Gillian McAllister, Anything You Do Say
The Girl I Used To Be
Gemma Brogan needs a break from her life.
A work event looks the ideal chance to get away. And a friendly new client seems like the perfect gentleman when he joins Gemma for an innocent dinner . . .but the next morning she has no memory of how the night ended and he has vanished into thin air.
Suddenly, Gemma is plunged into a twisted nightmare she can’t control. To protect her future, and her family, she will have to confront shocking secrets from her past – and the truth about the girl she used to be.
The Closer You Get
Ruby didn’t plan to have an affair. She doesn’t love her husband, but wouldn’t set out to steal someone else’s. Yet when she met Harry they simply couldn’t keep apart. Now, she’s brave enough to leave her marital home and start again, and so is Harry. Or so she thinks.
Waiting at a hotel for her lover to arrive, Ruby realises she has made a mistake. Harry won’t come. He will never leave his wife.
What Ruby hasn’t worked out is that someone else knows all about the affair. They have been watching Ruby’s every move. They are determined to punish her. And they are even closer than she thinks…