CAT Magazine

CAT Magazine

Do You Believe in Ghosts? Chatting with Author Janet McNulty

WI: When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

I first realized that I wanted to be a writer when I was in high school. Back then I wrote a few short stories and poems, none of which I published. But at the same time I began writing a novel which I worked on for ten years. Writing started out as a hobby, but now it is time to turn it into a way of life.

WI: What inspired you to pen this particular novel/book?

I’ve always liked a good ghost story and a good mystery so I figured I’d put both into one book. The title Sugar And Spice And Not So Nice I had bouncing around my head for quite a while before I penned the first sentence. My goal was to make this a fun but entertaining read, and that is why I wrote this book.

WI: What road blocks did you come across while writing this story?

The biggest road block was making this a good mystery without it being just like every other mystery novel on the market. I wanted to keep the story engaging, funny, and serious while at the same time making it different. That is the hardest thing about writing any novel.

WI: What do you do if a story just doesn't seem to flow the way you were hoping it would?

If I can’t get a story to go the way I want it to, I usually scrap the entire thing and start over. Though sometimes I will keep the parts of the story I like, and throw away the parts that I do not like. Then, I go through my outline and rework how I want the story to go before restarting it.

WI: What has been the hardest thing about marketing this story?

The hardest part about marketing is getting the name out there. There are a lot of mysteries on the market, some by well-known authors. The hardest part about marketing this book, is getting people to want to pick it up and begin talking about it to their friends. Word of mouth is what sells a book and that I the hardest thing about marketing any book, including this one.

WI: What is one thing you wished you knew before, that you now know about marketing?

How hard it would be. Marketing mean investing money in advertisements and it also means investing a lot of time. It also takes patience. Success does not happen overnight. It comes in bits in pieces until you start to make a name for yourself.

WI: What is one piece of advice that you received to help your writing that you still carry with you today?

The biggest piece of advice I received was that you should distance yourself from your novel when you start editing. I what I do to achieve this is I will put my writing away for a few weeks before I begin the editing process. Then I read it from the perspective of my audience and ask myself, “Does this story engage my interest and can I see, touch, and smell the places my characters are in?”

WI: Tell us what a day in your writing life is like, do you have any writing quirks?

One of my biggest quirks is that I like to listen to the soundtracks of my favorite movies for inspiration while I write. I will also read what I wrote and read the dialogue of my characters in different voices.

WI: Where do you hope to take your writing in the future?

I hope take my writing to a place where I have a bunch of successful books on the market enjoyed by people all over the world. As a writer I create stories and every writer wants the public to read and enjoy the tales they weave.

WI: Are you currently working on any new projects?

I am currently working on two novels. The first is a sequel to Sugar And Spice And Not So Nice. The second novel I am writing is titled Legends Lost Tesnayr, which is a fantasy adventure. I hope to have both of them completed before the end of the year.

WI: Where can readers find you?

Your readers can follow me on Twitter. My profile name is JMRUL.

WI: Where can your book be purchased?

My book can be purchased at in both paperback and on the Kindle. It is also available on Barnes and Noble’s Nook.

We want to thank you for taking time to chat with us today and offering your writing & marketing experiences. We wish you much success in the future.

The Writing Innovations Team

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.  


     "I groaned as I rolled over onto my side. I opened my eyes. Rachel stood over me. “Oh, no,” I said, “It wasn’t a dream?”"

You didn’t tell me everything,” I accused. “You told me that you last saw Rachel at her apartment, but the truth is you went to the computer lab. Why didn’t you tell me?”"

"My name is Mellow Summers and I am twenty-six years old. I was never was one to believe in ghosts...That is not until I met Rachel."

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