What I'll Be Talking About at the Library Today

The librarian asked me to speak about how I came to write my books--and in particular Kindred Spirits, the latest in the Deputy Tempe Crabtree series.

Of course it all began like it does for most writers, I was an avid reader. At least ten books a week when I was a kid growing up--that's all the library would let me take home at a time.

Writing began as soon as I could write. I rewrote my favorite stories like some of the Little House on the Prairie tales. Wasn't long before I came up with my own ideas. From there I wrote short stories and plays.

Though after I graduated, I married and had a large family I continued to write--not very interesting things, PTA newsletters, some pieces of the newspaper. But I did write two novels that were immediately rejected and I threw them away. (Wish I had them today.)

My first books that were published were historical family sagas. Because I was reading so many mysteries decided to take a turn with them. We had a lot of friends who were police officers--and later my son-in-law became an officer. As I've said before, I've done ride-alongs with him and later a female police officer who more or less bared her soul to me as the night went on.

An article I wrote about a female resident deputy influenced me a lot, as well as a lovely Indian woman I met who told me about growing up on the reservation.

I wrote two mysteries about Tempe but she didn't develop into the Tempe in future novels. No, I didn't throw those away, instead I changed the locations and the names and descriptions of the major characters and turned them into stand-alones.

As Tempe became a "real" person, I began doing a lot of research about our local Indians and the reservation. Much of what I learned has gone into the mysteries.

I'll tell about some of that research, I've written about it here before. I'll also talk about the research I did for Kindred Spirits, and the Tolowa woman who was the inspiration for two characters in the book.

For me, it's fun to talk about my writing and my books, I hope the people who come to the Beale Memorial Library today at 2 will have as much fun listening to me. I'm looking forward to questions.



Morgan Mandel said…
I hope you had a good time giving your presentation, Marilyn.

Morgan Mandel

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