Interview with Susan Whitfield

Tell us a about your latest book.
Hell Swamp takes place in along Black River in eastern North Carolina and is the third book in the Logan Hunter Mystery series. Logan gets to the river and finds a woman gutted and hanged from her own chandelier. Deer hunters are the prime suspects. The seed which started this book came from my son, whose 13-year-old neighbor killed a trophy deer and has his picture in the local newspaper. Soon after, he received a letter with the picture and these words scrawled across it: "Murderer! You should be shot!" That's all it took to get my juices flowing.
Who is your publisher?
I queried L&L Dreamspell and 15 days later they offered me a contract. I was shocked and delighted.
Have you taken any writing courses?
About five years ago, I did an online search "how to write a novel". To my amazement, up popped Rob Parnell's "How to write a novel in thirty days". Even though I was skeptical, I downloaded the ebook, and in thirty days I had the bones to Genesis Beach, my first mystery. I have since downloaded several other tools from Rob. He does an incredible job of taking a novice step-by-step through the process. He and I stay in touch even though he lives in Australia.
What genre do you write and why?
Mystery/suspense is the only genre I've written so far and it's because that's what I prefer to read. However, once I finish Gator Creek, the fourth Logan Hunter Mystery, I plan to turn my attention to a more humorous mystery and see how that plays out. I'm also gathering research for an historical mystery about an ancestor of mine.
How do you overcome writer's block?
A block is a nasty thing! Some folks raise eyebrows when they hear how I work myself out of one. When writer's block struck during Genesis Beach, I paced, cussed, and totally frustrated. One morning I just decided to start another novel. Since Logan Hunter was a familiar character, I used her in the second book and changed the setting and all the other characters. Just North of Luck was born along with a series. The same event occurred with JNOL and Hell Swamp became the third novel in the series. I didn't really start out to write a series, but here I am! I up the ante with each mystery, challenging both Logan and myself. The fourth book, Gator Creek, is proving to be the most challenging project yet.

Where can people find out more about you and your writing?


  1. Nice interview, Jo. Your bio is fascinating, Susan. Bravo on your success and best wishes with many years more.


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