Sunday, July 8, 2012

Getting to know Susan Whitfield

Today we have mystery author, Susan Whitfield, with us. I recently read her novel, Sin Creek, and it was sensational. I’m looking forward to reading many more of her books. In the meantime, let’s get to know Susan.
Susan, where did you grow up? Did your childhood contribute to your desire to be a writer?  
I grew up in eastern North Carolina and I’m still there. My parents loved to read and I always met the Bookmobile with my arms full of books to turn in so that I could get more. Little Women was my favorite. I suppose the fact that my parents kept books accessible had something to do with my desire to write. The seed was planted early and I actually wrote a 40-page outline while I was in high school. It’s still around here somewhere even though I never picked it up and went with it. Once I finally started, I started fresh.
Where do you live now? Do you use that locale for settings in your novels?
My Logan Hunter series is scattered around North Carolina, the first novel, Genesis Beach, along the Crystal Coast. The second mystery in what became a series is Just North of Luck, set in The Smoky Mountains. I went back to my childhood home in Atkinson to set Hell Swamp at The Black River Plantation I’ve loved since I was a child. The fourth mystery, Sin Creek, is set in Wilmington where I lived for too short a time, but my love for that city will never diminish. I’m working on the fifth mystery now and it’s set along the Inner Banks. I just completed my first women’s fiction and it’s set in Wayne County where my husband and I have lived for 44 years.
What inspired you to write your most recent novel?
Slightly Cracked is about two lifelong friends enduring hot flashes, marital tiffs, and concerns about sagging and aging. I was so full of feelings about these issues that it seemed the right thing to do. I’m blessed to have some wonderful friends and we’ve been through good, bad, and ugly together. Now that I’m on the backside of hot flashes, I tried to make theses sometimes embarrassing situations humorous.
Did you plan to write a series before or after you wrote the first book?
I never thought about writing a series, but when I got stuck in the middle of Genesis Beach, I simply started writing another book with the same protagonist, Logan Hunter, a gutsy quirky strong woman.
Name three of your favorite authors in the mystery genre.
James Patterson, Lisa Scottoline, and Tess Gerritsen.
What are your favorite things to do when you’re not reading or writing?
Those are definitely the top two. Let’s see, I enjoy cooking and entertaining and attending baseball games for my three grandsons.
Do you like to travel? If so, what are some of your favorite places to go?
My husband and I took off in his truck five years ago and headed to Yellowstone and then over to Mount Rushmore. It was a fabulous trip and we said we’d go back. We’re planning to go to Jackson Hole in September to celebrate our 45 years of marriage. So far nowhere I’ve been has topped the majesty of Yellowstone.
How would you describe yourself personality wise?
I’m a complex individual but most people think I’m a crack-up. Not sure if that’s good or bad. LOL.
How would you finish this sentence? If I won a million dollars, I would . . . share it with my two sons and their families, perhaps buy a vacation home, and put the rest in savings.

Pat, thanks for the interview. It’s been a treat.
Yes it has, Susan. Thank you!
To read more about Susan’s books, here’s the link to her Amazon Author Page.