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Local author has debut novel published

Published on: 13 Feb 2018

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Emily Koch is an award-winning journalist living in on the Bishopston/ Horfield border with her husband and 10 month old daughter.. She is a graduate of the Bath Spa Creative Writing programme. In 2008 Emily was in a serious car accident which left her with two broken legs and serious damage to ligaments in her knees, leaving her immobilised. It took her three months to relearn how to walk and three years to gain enough physical strength to be able to run. This experience gave her the realisation that life is short, unpredictable and precious, and lead her to quit her job as a journalist, motivating Emily to write her debut novel.

That novel is now a reality Published by Harvill Secker (an imprint of Penguin Random House) “If I die before I awake” is set entirely in Bristol and tells the story of Alex.

Everyone believes Alex is in a coma, unlikely to ever wake up. As his family debate withdrawing life support, and his friends talk about how his girlfriend Bea needs to move on, he can only listen. But Alex soon begins to suspect that the accident that put him here wasn’t really an accident. Even worse, the perpetrator is still out there and Alex is not the only one in danger. As he goes over a series of clues from his past, Alex must use his remaining senses to solve the mystery of who tried to kill him, and try to protect those he loves, before they decide to let him go.

Speaking to the Horfield and Lockleaze Voice Emily says that the inspiration for the novel came from a news report that she heard on the radio, "I was driving to work one day, listening to the radio, and there must have been a story about a man in a coma on the news. It got me thinking about his family, his girlfriend - how would his condition affect them? That was how the idea for the book first came about, but it changed a lot from that nugget of inspiration to the finished version of the novel."

Commenting on what it feels like to to find out that you have secured a publishing deal Emily says, “"Finding out that I had an offer from a publisher was very surreal - by that point I had been working on the book for about 18 months. It is a cliche but it was a dream come true. A few days later, I got married, so it was a busy and very exciting week!"



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