Nessie is a Massachusetts native and mother of two who has dabbled in everything from abstract painting to freelance sports reporting. She also loves a good story, whether it’s reading or writing one. Active membership in a writer’s critique group has helped erase the memory of two horribly written practice novels. LIVING DEAD GIRL is her first real novel.
Jen MacLellan has hit a dead end…
Jen knows tattooed, blue-haired Jack Norris is trouble the minute he opens his front door. And being a mortician in the avante garde East Side of Providence, Jen has seen a lot. Jack has recruited Jen’s teenage brother Drew to play drums for his less-than-respectable punk band, and Jen has no choice but to follow their gigs to keep her little brother out of trouble. But when Drew goes missing, she finds herself in the awkward position of asking for Jack’s help. Shocked that he agrees, Jen decides she may have misjudged him. Worse, she might even like him.
But when Jen is brutally attacked, she awakens in the hospital where a Sid Vicious look-alike greets her with the news: she’s dead, and he’s the reaper assigned to take her away. Yeah, not so much. Refusing to leave, Jen’s spirit watches helplessly as her loved ones suffer, powerless to ease her family’s grief or prevent the police from accusing Jack of her murder. Desperate to help them, Jen convinces the reaper to bring her back. But reanimating corpses isn’t as easy as it looks, and neither is finding a killer before it’s too late…
Q) What inspired you to write this story?
I'm not sure if there was any specific thing that inspired me. I think I'm the queen of random ideas. They just kind of hit me, whether I'm driving to work, or standing in line at the grocery store, or whatever I'm doing. With Living Dead Girl, the first spark that popped into my mind was 'what if a girl was brought back from the dead...she's like a zombie, but can still think' and I just started thinking about it and all the different scenarios.
Q) How long did it take you to write?
Honestly that's tough to say. I'm not the most disciplined writer, so I wrote in spurts and set it aside for a while, then picked it back up. When it came time to revise, I had it a few people read it through for me and tweaked based on some of their reactions/suggestions. Then, after it was accepted for publication it went through another overhaul. I'm hoping that the process for book 2 will become more streamlined.
Q) What is your favorite thing about writing?
Being able to use my imagination to solve this giant puzzle—that's more or less what it feels like with writing a story. You're solving a series of problems to help your characters from point A to point B and then the end. It's never boring.
Q) What is your least favorite thing about writing?
When I'm not in the mood to do it, or the words just aren't matching what my mind envisions. I'm probably my own worst critic, so when those moods come on I need to know when to step away. That's why it's so helpful to have a network of writer friends to commiserate with. We support each other and kick each other in the butt when necessary.
Q) If you could be any famous person for one day, who would you be and why?
I'm not sure why I'm having a tough time with this one. I don't think there's anyone I'd want to be, but there are a few historical figures I wouldn't mind meeting just to see what they were really like (versus what we've learned about them).
Q) What is the oldest thing in your fridge and how old is it?
Actually, my fridge is pretty up to date right now, haha. When I moved late last summer, I tossed out all the questionable condiments I had hanging around. One of which was a bottle of hot sauce (unopened, no less, so I have no idea why it was even in there) that was probably at least five years old.
Q) What can readers expect from you in the future?
I'm continuing on where Living Dead Girl left off in a book two, and possibly a book three. I also have a couple stories starring other characters from Living Dead Girl.