Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Marilyn Meredith - Guest Author

Marilyn Meredith describes herself as Busy, Persevering, Friendly, Caring, and Fun. Her writing is Mysterious, Absorbing, Suspenseful, Unusual, and Quick. Quick got me thinking: should I be jealous because she writes quickly while I am sometimes ponderous or is her writing a quick read? You’ll have to decide for yourself.

Describe your most productive writing venue. What makes it best for you?

My home office. Everything I need is close at hand from my computer to any research books.

What is your most productive time of the day (and do you need caffeine)?

Mornings, my mind works best then. And my choice of caffeine is Chai latte, always begin my day with it.

How many books do you read in a typical month? Do you read in your genre while you are writing? What’s your most recent “great” book?

When I’m writing, three of four. Yes, I always read mysteries. My favorite recent “great” book was Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger. I enjoy his other books too, but this one was indeed great.

Name three not well-known authors you would recommend and tell us what you like about their writing.

M.M. Gornell who writes about the Mojave Desert and Route 66. She knows the area well and her mysteries show it.

Sue McGinty writes about one of my favorite places, the Central Coast of California. Her mysteries border on cozies but with more meat in them.

Gerrie Ferris Finger who you can always count on for an exciting tale with many twists and turns.

What themes do you regularly employ in your writing?

To be honest, I don’t usually realize I’ve used a theme until I finish the book. What I do know is that I often address problems in my mysteries that people face in real life such as dealing with a loved one with Alzheimer’s, or having a child with Down Syndrome.

What motivates you to write?

The need to find out what is happening with my characters keeps me writing. I write two different mystery series and when I’m through writing one, I’m anxious to see what’s going on with the other set of characters.

How did you develop the idea for your most recent work?

I read an article about someone who was missing with his car door left open and the engine running. That’s what got me started. The next step was who in my story would be missing and figuring out why.

What motivates your protagonist (if not a series, then use the protagonist of your most recent novel)? What influenced who they are today?

The series began with a police officer named Doug Milligan whose partner was killed while his wife was on a ride-along. Through the series Milligan has become a detective and married a fellow officer. His most constant motivation, of course, is solving whatever crime(s) are facing him.

Name three writers from whom you have drawn inspiration and tell us why.

Robert B. Parker because he wrote short but compelling mysteries.

Ed McBain’s 87th precinct novels, because of the interesting cast of characters including their private lives.

William Kent Krueger because of his ability to set the scene.

What was the best piece of writing advice you ever received and why was it so valuable?

The same advice I give new writers today, “Never give up.” If you really want to be a writer, keep on writing. Don’t let rejections or anything else make you stop.

For more information about me and my books, check out my website at http://fictionforyou.com
Follow me on Facebook at http://facebook.marilynmeredith.com/
My latest Rocky Bluff P.D. mystery (written as F.M. Meredith), ViolentDepartures. 

Here's a short blurb for Violent Departures:

College student, Veronica Randall, disappears from her car in her own driveway, everyone in the Rocky Bluff P.D. is looking for her. Detective Milligan and family move into a house that may be haunted. Officer Butler is assigned to train a new hire and faces several major challenges


  1. Thank you so much for your great interview! Great way to tie up my blog tour.

  2. Great interview, Marilyn and Jim. I've gone and ordered Murder in Los Lobos on your say-so. And I love the Rocky Bluff PD too!

  3. Thank you for stopping by, Theresa--and thank you for you kind words about my series.

  4. It has been amazing to me how many different topics Marilyn has covered during her blog tour. All of them have been extremely interesting and many offer great tips for we fellow authors. This one was no exception. Well done by both of you.

  5. This was an insightful blog. It made me think.

  6. It is work to try to come up with something new, Jackie, especially when a couple of hosts ask me to cover the same topic. But, I've been at this a long time and I know how to really reach for new stuff.

  7. Marilyn -- thanks so much for including my questions as part of your blog tour. I'm delighted to see some old and some new faces.

    ~ Jim

  8. Marilyn, I always enjoy your blog posts and I learn something new and interesting every time. You're an inspiration for all the rest of us. Best wishes to you, dear lady. Earl Staggs

  9. I keep learning more interesting things about you with blog posts like this. I bet you're glad to take another break from a long blog tour. I know you'll keep going though, just on to something different.

  10. Hi, Linda, now i can get back to finishing up my Tempe book, the one that has a character named Linda Thorne in it.

  11. I agree with Jim on the "quick." That's not something I've mastered. And I'm intrigued by people who can keep multiple series going at once.

    Thanks for sharing with us!