AUTHOR INTERVIEW - Marilyn Meredith, Author of JUDGMENT FIRE

We have a very special guest here at The Writer's Life today by the name of Marilyn Meredith, author of Judgment Fire, the latest book in the award winning Deputy Tempe Crabtree mystery series! Marilyn is also one of my clients at Pump Up Your Book Promotion and The Writer's Life happens to be the first stop on her virtual book tour this month, so wish her luck!

Marilyn is also the author of Wishing Makes it So, a psychological thriller awarded best thriller by the American Author Association and USA Book News Best Book Award. She is a member of Sisters in Crime, Mystery Writers of America, EPIC and Public Safety Writers of America. She was an instructor for Writers Digest School for ten years, served as an instructor at the Maui Writer's Retreat and other writer's conferences and is a popular speaker at libraries and other venues. She makes her home in a small foothill community much like Bear Creek where Deputy Tempe Crabtree lives.

The latest in the Deputy Tempe Crabtree series, Judgment Fire, will be available this month (August) from Mundania Press, http://www.mundaniapress.com/
You can visit her home on the web at http://fictionforyou.com/ or her blog at http://marilynmeredith.blogspot.com/!

TWL: Welcome to The Writer's Life, Marilyn! Can you tell us when your passion for writing began?

Marilyn: Before I could read, I drew illustrations for the radio soap operas my mom listened to (I've been around for a long, long time). Once I learned to read and write, I created my own stories and I've been writing something ever since.

TWL: Can you tell us what your typical 'writing' day is like?

Marilyn: I usually do my creating first thing in the morning. Mornings are best for me. However, when I'm busy, I'll write whenever I can squeeze it in. I usually edit in the afternoon or evenings.

TWL: Do you write fulltime?

Marilyn: Writing is what I do - sometimes, though, it's the kind of writing that brings in money instead of fiction which I love. I do try to spend sometime everyday doing promotion of one sort or another.

TWL: Can you tell us a little bit about your book, Judment Fire?

Marilyn: Judgment Fire is the latest in my Deputy Tempe Crabtree series. Tempe investigates the murder of a battered wife and during the investigation comes face to face with repressed memories about being ridiculed because she was an Indian during her high school years. She also performs a star-light ceremony in the course of her investigation.

TWL: Who published your book and how has your experience with them been?

Marilyn: Mundania Press is the publisher of the Tempe books. My former publisher passed away and I feel extremely fortunate that Mundania has now contracted the next books in the series. Mundania Press is extremely professional with the business and its authors.
TWL: Can you tell us the inspiration behind your book?

Marilyn: Tempe is thecomposite of two women in law enforcement who shared their trials and
tribulations as lone females in their work force and a lovely Native American woman I know. Tempe is married to a Christian preacher. They love each other very much but sometimes when Tempe dabbles in the supernatural to find out something she needs to know, her husband fears for her soul. As an author, I have a lot of fun writing this aspect of the books. Though the done research I've done about our local Indian tribe and the reservation have definitely inspired certain aspects of all my Tempe books, the Indians and the reservation in my book are fiction.
TWL: Can you tell us ways you are promoting your book? Have they been successful?
Marilyn: I've done everything I can think of to promote, book signings (which I think are the least successful), library presentations, talks to women's groups and service clubs, presentations at writer's conferences (always sucessful.) I attend a lot of mystery cons which are fun and a way to meet fans. I belong to writers organizations such as Sisters in Crime (I'm a member of three different chapters), Mystery Writers of America, California Writers Club, EPIC, Public Safety Writers Association where I serve on the board. They all afford me different opportunities for promoting.

And of course, I promote on the web. I've had my own website for years, I have several different blogs, and belong to many lists. There isn't enough time to do it all, but I sure try.
TWL: Do you have a mentor?
Marilyn: Willma Gore, who was in the same critique group with me for years taught me more about writing than any book, class or conference. Though she moved away, we still keep in touch via email and she continues to give me support.
TWL: What future projects do you have in the works?
Marilyn: In the next in the series, Kindred Spirits, Tempe travels to Crescent City CA to find out information about a murder victim, but learns about the Tolowa Indians and Big Foot.
TWL: Can you give aspiring authors words of advice towards getting published?
Marilyn: If you know your book is ready and you're not getting anywhere with New York publishers, seek small independent publishers who publish the kind of books you write. Don't ignore e-publishers who also do trade paperbacks. Always research a publisher before submitting to one. Once you've finished a book, had it edited and sent it off, start the next one.
The only way to get published is to never give up.
TWL: What’s one thing about your life that you think is important, but nobody asks?
Marilyn: Though writing is a big part of my life, my family is most important to me. I've been married to my best friend for over fifty years, we raised five children, now have nineteen grandchildren, and ten greats. I enjoy spending time with my family. We also have an active church life.

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