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Interview: Mack Mulluncey, Author of Euthanasia

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In the novel Euthanasia, Mack Mulluncey tackles some really difficult issues. He writes here about the experience…

What was the hardest part of writing your book?

There were some scenes that were incredibly difficult for me to write. One that comes to mind immediately is when Alex, who had been brutally raped, talks about the details of her attack. I found myself feeling emotionally beaten up every time I went back to read that scene.

Also, there’s a scene where the serial rapist discusses his views about his behavior. I actually managed to disgust myself with that, which tells me that I accomplished what I intended.

When did you first start writing and when did you finish your first book?

I wrote Euthanasia originally in the mid-nineties and it took me about two years to finish. I tried for a while to get an agent or a publisher for it and when that didn’t happen, I kind of put the book aside and life just went on.

I thought about self-publishing periodically over the years, but it was just too expensive. Then, last year, I stumbled on an article about how writers were getting their work out there by self-publishing e-books. After I learned about that, I dusted off the old manuscript, and it took me about a year to rework it.

Can you tell us about your challenges in getting your first book published (if any)?

Since I ended up self-publishing it, all of the challenges I experienced were around navigating through the whole e-book world. Luckily, there are a lot of resources out there to help writers who decide to go this route.

Have you written a book that you have not been able to get published? If so, can you share a little about it with us?

Euthanasia is actually the second novel that I wrote. The first one, in retrospect, really sucked. I don’t think it will ever see the light of day since I can’t imagine that I’d be able to fix it to my satisfaction. It did serve a purpose though, since it got me into the practice of writing regularly.

How did you come up with the title?

The title of Euthanasia is surrounding the whole idea of putting someone out of their misery. The group of people in the book all claim that they want to kill the local abortion doctor to put their community out of its misery. But really, they have their own personal reasons for wanting to do it, so deep down, they think this murder will end their own misery. They want to put him down to save themselves.

Is there anything else you would like to share with us?

I just would like to say that I hope people will give the novel a chance, despite the fact that it deals with some really dark and serious themes. Also, and I can’t stress this enough, Euthanasia is not meant to advance a particular political point of view. I didn’t write it intending it to be a pro-life book or a pro-choice book, and I don’t really feel like preaching politics is necessarily my job as a storyteller. I hope that people will enjoy the novel, no matter what their personal beliefs are.

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