Nancy Weber has two favorite questions: “What if…?” and “Why not?” They’ve inspired most of her 22 books—fiction and memoir—as well as essays for a wide range of magazines and anthologies.
In 1973 she put an ad in The Village Voice seeking a partner in a deep-down, all-the-way identity exchange: families, friends, lovers, work, even allergies. The Life Swap, which chronicles the adventures that rolled out, kicked up a lot of dust and continues to cause ripples. The Manchester Guardian recently called her story “the mother of all life swaps.” Yes, she slept with her swapee’s husband. “But that week, he was my husband,” as she told Johnnie Carson on the Tonight Show. “And it was more fun than eating my swapee’s unflavored yoghurt for breakfast.”
Her fiction has variously considered whether love might be surgically transplanted (Brokenhearted) and how a middle-aged mother of five might end up being best friends with her senator husband’s favorite paid-for sex partner ($500). The Playgroup, which imagines a sexually-transmitted disease that confers wondrous powers on the offspring of the infected, earned the admiration of an infectious disease specialist and led to Nancy becoming the longtime board chair of the doctor’s pioneering HIV/AIDS organization.
As a columnist for Thrive, a brief-lived monthly tabloid for boomers, Nancy considered late-life intentional communities, books aimed at older readers, and what she dubbed movies for grown-ups (no Brad Pitt). She writes about food and travel for ceotraveler.com.
Since earning a midlife-madness toque at the French Culinary Institute, she has catered cocktail parties and private dinners under the rubric Between Books She Cooks. Current projects include a fictional sequel to The Life Swap and an anthology of loss, Losing It. She’s the mother of two grown children and lives in Greenwich Village. She thinks chess and other games are a turn-on. Curiously, she now eats unflavored yoghurt for breakfast. Learn more at www.betweenbooksshecooks.com.