Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Marilyn Meredith's Dangerous Impulses

Please Welcome F.M. (Marilyn) Meredith to Acme Authors Link 

F.M., also known as Marilyn Meredith, is the author of the Deputy Tempe Crabtree series. She first became interested in writing about law enforcement when she lived in a neighborhood filled with police officers and their families. The interest was fanned when her daughter married a police officer and the tradition has continued with a grandson and grandson-in-law who are deputies. She’s also serves on the board of the Public Safety Writers Association, and has many friends in different law enforcement fields. For twenty plus years, she and her husband lived in a small beach community located in Southern California much like the fictional Rocky Bluff. She is a member of three chapters of Sisters in Crime, Epic, and Mystery Writers of America.
And on Facebook and Twitter as MarilynMeredith

Marilyn's Shares Her Writing Journey With Us Today -
Looking Back Over My Years as a Writer  
by F.M. Meredith

Sometimes it’s a good idea to look back over your accomplishments and disappointments in order to see how far you’ve come.

My first book (an historical family saga) received nearly thirty rejections before finding a publisher. (This was back in the days of typewriters, carbon paper, submitting full manuscripts in a box with another pre-addressed and stamped box inside.) I knew nothing at all about promotion and expected the publisher to do it all. One thing I do know, the distribution was good because people spotted it in markets and drugstores. The editor who bought it left the publisher—a big setback.

The second book (also an historical family saga) was accepted by a publisher that turned out to be a crook—and guess what, I self-published with another company that also turned out to be dishonest. I bought a lot of the books and managed to sell them myself, but never received a single royalty.

I changed genres and wrote my first mystery, The Astral Gift. This poor book found a home first with another crooked publisher (back then, there were lots of them preying on writers), 50 books were printed and the publisher disappeared. The Astral Gift had two more publishers after that.

Somewhere in this time period, I found another publisher who wanted me to make my submission camera-ready, long before print-on-demand companies, I struggled but managed to complete the project only to learn the publisher died.

When I wrote my first Rocky Bluff P.D. mystery, it was accepted by an e-publisher before anyone had a clue what this meant, nor were there any e-book readers. This was an unsuccessful venture. I’ve already written about what happened next, the series went through two more publishers until finally begin published by Oak Tree Press.

My other series about Deputy Tempe Crabtree has had a similar rough path to publication and staying published. An agent told me she wouldn’t represent me unless I changed Tempe’s name. She thought it too unusual. I found another agent who loved the name but accomplished nothing in four years. I struck out on my own and sold the book to a small independent Press, Golden Eagle. Four books were published, and then the publisher who’d become a friend, passed away unexpectedly. Hard Shell Word Factory republished the series as e-books, including a prequel. The publisher sold the company and all this series was picked up by Mundania Press both as e-books and trade paperbacks.

None of it has been easy. Would I do it again? Only if it were in this time period of computers and the Internet. Today, self-publishing is much easier with far better results. There are many legitimate small presses out there looking for good books to publish. It is easy to contact authors for a recommendation of their publishers. You can find out about all the best ways to promote through the Internet and get lots of advice and support from fellow authors.

This is the briefest of histories, there were other books and other mishaps along the way, but this is what I remember the most clearly. One thing that I mustn’t forget is I learned a lot along the way, some from other agents I had, much from writers’ conferences, writing magazines and books, but the very most from the members of the critique group that I joined over thirty years ago.
Now a bit about Marilyn's latest, Dangerous Impulses:

An attractive new-hire captivates Officer Gordon Butler, Officer Felix Zachary’s wife Wendy is befuddled by her new baby, Ryan and Barbara Strickland receive unsettling news about her pregnancy, while the bloody murder of a mother and her son and an unidentified drug that sickens teenaged partiers jolts the Rocky Bluff P.D.

 And A Contest!
The person who comments on the most blog posts on this tour may have a character named after him or her in the next Rocky Bluff P.D. crime novel or choose a book from the previous titles in the Rocky Bluff P.D. series in either paper or for Kindle.

Rocky Bluff P.D. Series: Though each book in the Rocky Bluff P.D. series is written as a stand-alone, I know there are people who like to read a series in order. From the beginning to the end:

Final Respects
Bad Tidings
Fringe Benefits
Smell of Death
No Sanctuary
An Axe to Grind
Angel Lost
No Bells
Dangerous Impulses

Find F.M. (Marilyn) Meredith at: 
On Facebook and Twitter as MarilynMeredith

Check Out F.M. (Marilyn) Meredith's last stop on the tour tomorrow, March 28, when she visits Chester Campbell at

Please leave a comment to welcome F.M. (Marilyn) Meredith to Acme Authors Link.


Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

Yep, it's been a crazy road to publishing. And now, the hardest part is the promotion.

Morgan Mandel said...

You're doing a spectacular job, Marilyn!

Welcome to Acme Authors Link!

Morgan Mandel

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

This blog tour has been crazy, people forgetting, wrong URLs, etc. But I am thankful for everyone who has been so kind to host me. Again, thank you, Morgan!

Jacqueline Seewald said...

Hi, Marilyn,

Your history resembles my own. Writing is a tough field. I discouraged my own children from getting involved for that reason. But I have to say, in spite of rejections and bad publishers, if it's in your blood, you can't not write!

Patricia Gligor's Writers Forum said...

I had a rough road to publication too but not nearly as rocky as yours! You are living proof that determination and perseverance pay off!

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

Jacqueline, this is so very true. I love writing and have an attachment to my characters. How will I know what's happened to them unless I write their stories?

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

Yep, Patrician, that's what it takes, perseverance and I'm a champion at that.

Notes Along the Way with Mary Montague Sikes said...

I can relate, Marilyn!
I even had similar things with painting.

Mary Montague Sikes

Lorna Collins - said...

What happened to "The Astral Gift" and the family saga? Any pans to bring them out again? (Need a good editor? Will work for books - but only yours!)

Jean Henry Mead said...

Determination certainlyy pays off, Marilyn, nnd I'm glad it did.I enjoy your books.

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

With paintings too, Mary? Eeek!

Lorna, I'll have to see where The Astral Gift is, and OTP has the family saga.

Thanks, Jean!

Diane Kratz said...

I'm not published yet and reading about all the dishonest people you've encountered, scares me to death!

Kudos for not giving up!

Evelyn Cullet said...

One thing we have in common, Marilyn, I've also had a publisher die within months of accepting one of my manuscripts. I still have it. I can't bring myself to submit it again.

Deb Larson said...

Marilyn ~
Welcome to Acme Authors! We're so glad you're here and had a chance to tell us about your "hard knocks" education in writing. I've had similar bumps as well. But a writer keeps writing - no matter what!
Best of luck with your new novel.
DL Larson

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

Diane, I don't think it's quite as bad now as it once was--plus there are many more options to get published than when I began.

Evelyn, someone once said that when a publisher dies on me I step over the body and find a new one. Maybe it's time for you to do that.

And DL you are right, a writer writes, no matter what disaster gets in the way.

Carolyn J. Rose said...

I hope you saved all your rejection letters. I've got folders full and someday when I'm out of ideas for the next book, I'm going to make a collage - a really, really, huge collage.

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

Most of my rejection letters are long gone, Carolyn. But I got plenty of them over the years. Kept a few.

Anonymous said...

You are to be commended on your determination (and helpful advice for those who follow).

Margot Justes said...

Welcome to Acme. Thank you for sharing this journey through the crazy writing and publishing business.

carl brookins said...

I admire your persistence! It's a lesson to all new authors. I also enjoy your novels!

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