PW: Which was harder to write, the first novel or the second?
ES: The second novel was tougher because I knew a lot more. I think without the life experience of a couple of decades between the two books, I couldn’t have written The Disappearance. The first novel had a great setting—it was very pictorial and very plot driven, but when I compare those characters to the characters I labored over for The Disappearance there’s no comparison. It took a lot of life experience to be able to create characters that had a real feeling to them. Getting inside their heads was the key to finishing the novel and convincing someone that it could be published. Also, the second book took a lot of imagining of what would a person not that different from me in background would feel like—and to take that simple story idea—a child disappears and no one Efrem Sigel, whose second novel, The Disappearance, will be knows why—into a novel that really explores what this means for a couple, their relationship and the rest of their lives and whether they can rediscover a purpose to life out of this terrible tragedy. I didn’t just want to write a thriller—a child disappears, they look for him, eventually they find out who did it and bring the culprit to justice. I wanted to do something more complex than that.
Efrem Sigel writes his second novel, The Disappearance, after a 35-year hiatus.