Friday, March 30, 2012

Sugar And Spice And Not So Nice, A Paranormal Mystery Thriller by Janet McNulty VBT Pit Stop Mar 30 - Author Interview

Click on the image to visit the Meet & Greet with Janet on VBT Cafe.

Janet McNulty currently resides in West Virginia where she moved after receiving her B.A. in History. She lives with her three cats who keep her on task.

Ms. McNulty has also recently published a novel, Legends Lost: Amborese, under the pen name Nova Rose. She is currently working on the second novel in the series called Legends Lost Tesnayr, but also has another nonfiction book in the works, that is untitled at this point.

Sugar And Spice And Not So Nice
Mellow Summers just wanted to go to college and get her film degree. She moved into a furnished apartment with her friend Jackie only to find that it already had a tenant: the ghost of a girl who was murdered a year earlier. Now it is up to Mellow to not only discover who the murderer is, but to prove it as well.

With the help of the ghost Rachel, Mellow sets out to solve the year old mystery. She soon finds out that she may have taken on more than she can handle. Pursued by someone who wants the identity of the killer to remain a secret, Mellow will have to use all her resources to outwit him and help the spirit of Rachel move on.

Louise: Janet, welcome to my blog! I’m so excited you could join me for a chat. When did you first decide to submit your work to be published? Tell us what or who encouraged you to take this big step.

Janet: Thank you for having me here, Louise. I first decided to submit my work for publication last year when I got the idea for the title of my book. I have always written short stories or poems, but never published any of them.  I decided to embark on a novel; my mom encouraged me to try publishing it. After considering it for a long while, I decided she was right. A manuscript is of little use if you allow it to collect dust on the hard drive. So, I did some research about the publishing process and jumped in, so to speak.

Louise: Please tell us a little about your new release Sugar And Spice And Not So Nice without giving too much of a spoiler away.

Janet: The book starts out with the main character, Mellow, who decides to start a new life with her best friend Jackie and moves to a new town. They managed to find a furnished apartment for a very low rent. The problem is, the apartment is haunted by a girl named Rachel, who was murdered the year before.

After recovering from her initial shock at meeting a ghost, Mellow decides to help Rachel solve her murder. Of course, Rachel gets Mellow into all kinds of trouble during all this, which she then has to help Mellow out of.

Louise: Do you plan all your characters out before you start a story or do they develop as you write?

Janet: A little bit of both. I planned Mellow’s character out as a plain, person who just wants to get her college degree. Rachel’s character was more of a make it up as you go along type. She is definitely a free spirited woman and I felt it best to keep her attributes unplanned so that she would appear as the spontaneous person that she is.

Louise: How much research do you do for your books? Have you found any cool tidbits in your research?

Janet: The amount of research I do depends on the writing project. I did a fantasy novel last year, for which I did spend time researching various myths and legends to incorporate in the story. I also wrote a nonfiction book that required at least five months of research.

For Sugar And Spice And Not So Nice I did very little. I meant for this to be a simple mystery/ thriller type. Most of my research involved people watching. I like to watch people and study their little habits. I use those observations in my writing.

Louise: What is your writing process? Do you outline, write by the seat of your pants (Pantser) or a combination of both?

Janet: Again this depends on what it is I’m writing. For my latest release, I wrote this more as a Pantser. I had maybe a three sentence outline to get started, but for the most part, I made the story up as I went.

Louise: Do you write full time? What did you do before you became a writer or still do?

Janet: Right now I write full time. When I lost my job a few years back, I turned to my writing as something to do and to keep me sane. Before then I worked part time in a library in the Children’s department. I even worked as a tutor at a university as part of their student employment program until I graduated.

Louise: Do you have a ritual when it comes to writing? Example….get coffee, blanket, paper, pen, laptop and a comfy place.

Janet: Before I sit down to write I usually make myself some tea.  Then I stick in some of my favorite music, pick up my laptop and start typing away.

Louise: Describe a typical writing day for you.

Janet: A typical writing day consists of me writing for at least three to four straight hours. Most of what I write is usually deleted when I go back and edit. Usually by the time I finish a day, I have a few paragraphs that I am completely happy with.

Louise: Please give us a sneak peek at your future books. What’s on the horizon?

Janet: Currently, I am writing the second novel in my Legends Lost trilogy. I hope to have that completed by the end of this summer. It will be published under the pen name of Nova Rose.

I am planning to write a sequel to Sugar And Spice And Not So Nice. I have a small outline for it right now, but haven’t quite gotten the plot worked out. It will be titled Frogs, Snails, And A Lot Of Wails. It should be released in the next 12 months.

Louise: What is your favorite genre to read and who is your favorite author?

Janet: My favorite genre is fantasy. But I love mysteries as well.  I’m afraid I am unable to pin down a favorite author. But some that I read frequently are Tolkien, Mary Higgins Clark, and recently I’ve read some of John Flanagan’s stuff.

Louise: Is there anything else you would like to tell the readers we have not touched on?

Janet: The only thing we haven’t touched upon is a writer’s inspiration. One thing I get asked about is where I find my ideas for my writing. I get them from anywhere. Sometimes I get an idea for my writing from just walking down the street or working out in the yard.  

That is something writers do all the time. We observe the world around us and draw inspiration from anything.   

Louise: Where can the readers learn more about you and find your books on the web?

Janet: I have an Author Profile page on Amazon which includes purchase links for anyone interested:
This page lists all of my publications. 

You can also go to to learn more about me and my writing.

Purchase Links:
Watch for more of the The Mellow Summers Series coming soon!

Readers, Janet will give away a signed copy to one lucky commenter! Answer this question in your comment and leave your email address (so we can easily contact the winner). Drawing will be held Friday, Mar 30

*How would you handle a ghost in your house or apartment? 


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