BOOKS BY SUSAN MERSON
Starting over is hard enough but when ghosts decide to hitch a ride into the future—things can get complicated.
Widowed Vivi leaves California for a new start back east landing in a college town near her old friend Vikram, now the local "spiritual" leader and disappointing lover. But the two have old business which leads them to uncovering the ghosts they conjured long before and the ones that are haunting them now.
Rose Shiner’s father Leo, a one time carnival barker and opera producer, prefers Puccini’s world to his own. Belle, Rose’s mother, fights debilitating depression, desperate to step up from her youth on the Canadian prairie to a suburban castle. Rosie struggles mightily to grow in this shadow world, fighting through nightmares to find dreams steady and safe enough to sustain her in daylight.
When They Go and You Do Not: A Blog and Plays about Dying and Coming Back to Life chronicles the author’s journey through the untimely death of her husband, Tony Shultz, from mesothelioma. Merson continues documenting the healing process through her plays as experience turns to memory. Her included most recent solo play completes the first cycle of healing for the wife turned widow.
It’s the anniversary of Annie Simon's teenaged son, Jordan's departure to points unknown and she's struggling to find balance. She joins the Clinton campaign to feel useful and is shattered at Trump's victory and the ongoing unraveling of the world around her—the fascist attacks, the loss of balance in her friends and families and writing students who come to her to resolve the endings to their own stories to no avail.
Annie meets an older man who she connects with only to find him volatile and unsteady, and finally, dead, at a snowy Vermont writing retreat. Ushering David over from life to death becomes a metaphor for what many in her world deal with during the volatile period between Trump's election and the advent of Covid.
Her son, Jordan, finally resurfaces after political trouble in Japan and a year in prison. Annie and Jordan meet again, manage to reach each other briefly in a meeting in an airport lounge, but they ultimately turn away to finish their own journeys, too far apart to offer anything but a witnessing of each other’s life.
“While nearly every Jewish female reader will find herself reflected here, the poignancy of these stories will be felt by readers of all ethnicities.”—Library Journal
Chicken soup and Barbra Streisand, lost fathers and first dates, Hebrew school and Queen Esther, seders and seductions. In this insightful, original anthology, forty-five American Jewish writers explore the richness of their shared heritage, from the tragic to the trivial.
In memoirs, fiction, and poetry new and favorite writers like Grace Paley, Amy Bloom, Vivian Gornick, and Laura Cunningham brilliantly reveal the challenges of coming of age as a Jewish woman in America today.
What have we lost that our mothers and grandmothers had? Do we still feel close ties to family and community? Can we make a decent pot roast?
This spirited collection is full of humor and wisdom, memory and affection—and there isn’t a Jewish girl (nice or otherwise) who won’t find herself reflected in these vibrant pages.
An essential bare bones guide to getting your own solo play into the world! For actors, writers and public speakers of all kinds. Award winning and veteran actress, writer and producer Susan Merson brings over thirty years of theatrical experience to Your Name Here: An Actor and Writer's Guide to Solo Performance.
The book includes:
**step by step acting and writing techniques
**examples and discussion of six different forms of solo plays
**exercises and questions to deepen your work
**new monologue material
**marketing strategies and production basics