Showing posts from December, 2013

Last Day of Mundania's Big 40% Off Sale

In Calling the Dead Deputy Tempe Crabtree calls back the dead for the first time in order to find out the truth about a murder and a suicide.

This experience is what opens the door into the supernatural and is the reason she sees spirits in future books.

There are some characters in this tale based on real people. One is the principal at the grammar school. She is fashioned after a teacher who taught children, their children and their grandchildren. Still alive, she is an icon in the town I live in. Still spry, energetic and the town historian. She was instrumental in the creation of our local museum.

I run into her from time to time in the local beauty salon and I know I'm going to hear an interesting tidbit either about something that happened in the past, or more recently.

And remember the code is HOLIDAY.

Since this is the last day of the sale, tomorrow I'll be back to blogging about other things.

And thank you every…

2 Days Left in Mundania's 40% Off Sale

In Judgment Fire Tempe discovers why she hasn't embraced her Native American heritage.

Though all of the Tempe Crabtree mysteries have some reference to Indian legends and rituals, from the beginning, Tempe hasn't known much about them, or even seemed to want to learn.

Nick Two John has been the one person who has relentlessly given Tempe bits and pieces of knowledge about what it means to be an Indian, but she hasn't accepted it as much as one might expect.

Now there are only two days left for this sale:


Only Three Days Left in Mundania's Big Sale

When I wrote Raging Water, I had the deaths of two women who went to our church in mind. Both these women died on the same night. They were poor, lived in the cheapest places possible, best friends, both had many ailments. When they died, no autopsy was done. They were what I might call "throw-away" people. Only one step from homeless, both had to have a lot of help from the church, sometimes for rent money, often a ride to the doctor and for food to make it to the end of the month. Both women were on a lot of medication, and some of that medication was missing from their homes. Wouldn't that make you suspicious? It did me, but not local law enforcement. That was the beginning of the creation of Raging Water. I dedicated the book to these two women. Another interesting fact about Raging Water is the character Miqui Sherwood. She is based in both looks and personality on a real person who begged me to put her in a book. All of her friends said I nailed her. And she'l…

Counting Down, 4 days left!

Want to start at the beginning of the Deputy Tempe Crabtree series?

Deadly Trail is called book 0 by Mundania. I prefer to call it the prequel.

It was the first one written in the series and the introduction of Pastor Hutch, Tempe's son, Blair, Nick Two John and the Bear Creek Inn, which I merely called The Inn in this book.

The book was first published by Hard Shell Word Factory.

To by it at Mundania's 40% discount, put in the code HOLIDAY.

Only a Few More Days!

Only a few more days to take advantage of Mundania's big 40% off sale.

All of my Deputy Tempe Crabtree mysteries are available through Mundania.

One of my favorites is Dispel the Mist.

One of the characters in Dispel the Mist is the Hairy Man, a Big Foot type legend who lives in the mountains above the Bear Creek Indian Reservation.

The drawing on the cover, is a replica of the pictograph that is actually in a rock shelter on the Tule River Indian Reservation, which is the inspiration for all of my tales that end up on the Indian Reservation.

Though I've never had an encounter with the Hairy Man, Tempe does in Dispel the Mist.

If you've never read this book, now's the time. All you have to do to get the 40% discount is enter the word HOLIDAY in the place for a code.

This offer will be over on December 31, so hurry!


Merry Christmas


What Do You Do on Christmas Eve?

Thinking way back--and with me, that's a long, long time ago, when my sister and I were children, our family always stayed home on Christmas Eve. We went to bed early, hoping to sleep in order to wake early and see what wonderful gifts we might fine in front of the hearth.

My parents needed plenty of time to bring out the presents. Even though we didn't have much money, they always managed to give us the most wonderful gifts.

Years later, when my husband and I had kids of our own, some Christmas Eve's were also spent at my parents' home and we spent a lot of the night before Christmas putting together complicated toys. And when Christmas Eve was at our own home, we had the same dilemma of figuring out directions to complicated toys. And with five kids, there was always something that took half the night to do.

Now, as grandparents and great-grandparents, we have new ritual. I always serve dinner on Christmas Eve. Sometimes we've had Chinese food, once it was pizz…

Kindred Spirits and the woman who inspired the story

When I met Junie Lee Mattice in Crescent City, I knew that I'd met a formidable person. She told me stories about the Tolowa people and along the way we bonded. I knew I had to write a book that included Junie and some of the history of her people.

That's when Kindred Spirits was conceived.

A Deputy Tempe Crabtree mystery, Junie appears in Kindred Spirits as two characters--her personality was so bold and strong, one character wasn't enough to embrace her.

When the book was finished and published, I traveled back to Crescent City where a celebration was given for Kindred Spirits in a local bed and breakfast. Junie and I sat side by side and autographed copies of the books for those who attended. And we both spoke at the luncheon that day.

We spent more time together and spoke again at the Crescent City library.

When we hugged goodbye that evening, that was the last time we were together. Junie Lee Mattice passed away this October. She was a wonderful woman and a great spo…

The Red Queen Dies, a Review

The Red Queen Dies by Frankie Y. Bailey
The only Edgar Banquet I ever attended I was seated at a table near the back and next to me was Frankie Bailey. I’d never met her before but enjoyed visiting with her. When P.J. Nunn asked if I’d like to review M. Bailey’s new mystery, The Red Queen Dies, I was thrilled to have the opportunity to, in a sense, renew that acquaintance.

The book is set in the future of 2019 in the city of Albany, New York and the protagonist, Detective Hannah McCabe, despite some advanced technology solves crime in the old-fashioned manner of collecting clues, interviewing witnesses and suspects, putting bit and pieces of information together like a puzzle, along with a large amount of gut-instinct. The murders of two young women, followed by a third older and somewhat famous woman known as the Red Queen, send McCabe and her partner on a complicated case. So many unusual clues pop up that involve Alice in Wonderland, the Wizard of Oz, Abraham Lincoln and John Wilkes B…

Can a Cover Sell a Novel?

I hope so because I picked the cover photo for my new medical thriller Ignore the Pain.

How did I have the audacity to pick the photo? I’ll avoid obvious answers and just say I’m no expert, but I’ve looked at lots of covers and have opinions.
A good cover is like a good title. It suggests the topic of the book and is catchy. I like bright primary colors for thrillers and adventure books, pastels for romances, and dark moody colors for horror and mystery novels because the colors convey a message.
Those of you who are sophisticated in your choice of covers have probably concluded that I’m very traditional. Now look at the cover of my new medical thriller.
Ignore the Pain is set partially in Bolivia, and the heroine Sara Almquist is an epidemiologist serving as a public health consultant there. But this is a public health assignment gone awry. At one point Sara is chased across the roof of Iglesia de San Francisco in La Paz, Bolivia and peers down at the Witches Market below. Thus cover …


By Sally Carpenter

Marilyn asked me to discuss about how I came about writing my current book, “The Sinister Sitcom Caper,” the second book in the Sandy Fairfax Teen Idol mystery series.

I’ve always been fascinated with television. Growing up in a small rural Midwest town, the three network channels were our principal form of entertainment. Even before the days of cable TV one could usually find something decent to watch. Sure, many of the shows of the 60s and 70s were silly, corny (anyone remember “Mr. Terrific”?) or brainless, but the programs were family-friendly and wildly entertaining, full of loveable characters and great personalities.
As a kid my career ambition was to star in my very own TV show—without having to pay any dues first or wait tables, of course.
My dream was fueled in my high school, which had a working TV studio. The senior TV production class produced short programs that aired to the local elementary schools. “Sesame Street” had just started at this time, so our s…

Rocky Bluff Neighborhood

This could easily be a neighborhood in Rocky Bluff, California as it climbs the hillside. No two houses alike.

In this photo, the sky is blue, what fog there was in the early morning has burnt off b the sun.
What a pleasant place to live.

That is until the body comes ashore in the surf.

Yes, that's how Murder in the Worst Degree begins.

The pub date for the book is March of 2014, but I'll be dropping little hints about it right here on my blog between book reviews and guest author posts.

Stay tuned.

And if you haven't read the latest yet, Dangerous Impulses, be sure and get it an catch up with what's going on with the Rocky Bluff P.D. and their loved ones.

Marilyn aka F. M. Meredith

Don't Miss Out on the Big Sale at Mundania!

This is the perfect time to catch up on the Deputy Tempe Crabtree series.

All print and e-books are on sale for 40% off until December 31st. All you have to do is put in the code HOLIDAY!

If you've bought someone an e-reader for Christmas, what a great way to load up on some books for them to read.

This is a good place to start to find the books that you want. Here's a list of the Tempe Crabtree mystery series from the beginning.

Deadly Trail (prequel)
Deadly Omen
Unequally Yoked
Wing Beat
Calling the Dead
Judgment Fire
Kindred Spirits
Dispel the Mist
Invisible Path
Bears With Us
Raging Water
Spirit Shapes

Wishing you a Merry Christmas and some great reading.


I love the covers of this series, most were done by Ana Winsom, and she's done a terrific job!

Planning for a Safe Holiday Season by Keith Bettinger

(Today I have a guest who is a retired police officer and a friend, who's giving us some great advice.)

The Christmas season is upon us and the economy is in the tank.When I was a cop we used to say that a bad economy was job security for us.However, for the general public and police officers and their families, this is also the season to become a victim.A few thoughts from an old crime prevention officer come to mind to make the holidays happier and safer for you and your families.

When going to the mall to shop during the Christmas season, if the mall provides a parking valet – use it.Don’t walk across a crowded parking lot with arms full of bags and packages.Let the valet go out and bring your car curbside for you to load with your purchases near the door of the mall.The few extra dollars you spend paying and tipping the valet will pay bigger dividends for the holidays than life insurance or medical insurance policies.

If you must walk across the parking lot, shop with a compani…

Carola Dunn Visits Again

Hello, folks. Thanks to Marilyn for inviting me. This being the twenty-first mystery in the Daisy Dalrymple series, I feel as if Daisy has come of age. When I started, with Death at Wentwater Court, she was twenty-five, unmarried, hoping to scratch out a living with her writing. Over 21 books, she's aged by four years and acquired a Scotland Yard detective for a husband, along with a stepdaughter and twin babies.
Looking back... She still writes articles for UK and US magazines, but owing to a lucky inheritance, that's just spending money now. Daisy and DCI Alec Fletcher have travelled all over England, across the Atlantic by ocean liner, andacross America in a biplane, finding suspicious bodies wherever they go. The books have been published in English in the US, UK, and worldwide, in hardcover, paperback, large print, ebook, and audio. There have been German translations, and most recently Polish.

What's next for Daisy and Alec? I confess to having considered retirement after …

Cup of Demons, Christian horror


Is the inheritance Maginel received from her great Aunt Magda a gift or a curse? Haunted by ancestral ghosts, plagued by demonic creatures, Maginel flees from her home. Upon her return as an adult, Maginel seeks to remove the barrier that prevents her from marrying the man she loves, she enters into a life and death battle for her soul. This is also what I like to call Christian horror--and it is a scary tale. Perfect for downloading on your Kindle. Try it, you might like it. And just for fun, when I was writing this book, I decided that all of Maginel's relatives with the "gift" should have unusual names beginning with M. I found some great ones, including Maginel. Marilyn Webpage:

Deeds of Darkness, Young Adult Horror for Kindle

Image When good and evil collide in the small town of Yokut Springs, Madeline Mahoney is forced to put her friendship and religious beliefs to the ultimate test. The story unravels when Madeline finds out that her best friend's mother, Dian Reddick, is the High Priestess to a coven of witches. Madeline, being very active in the Christian community, finds the mere thought of witches ridiculous and refuses to believe such utter nonsense. But after watching one of the witches meetings and witnessing the initiation of their final member, she can't help but have doubts. Especially when her best friend, Lynette, convinces her that a romance spell is just what she needs to capture her long time crush, Brian. If buying a Kindle for a teen, this might be just the book to purchase for a teen who likes scary books. …

Cherish Them While They're Young by C.C. Gevry

When my girls were just toddlers, I spent a good deal of time yanking my hair out and wondering when I would get time to rest. Between playdates, preschool, teaching Sunday school, and entertaining them, it never seemed to end. If I am entirely honest, there were days I resented how much time the girls demanded.

Empty nesters kept telling me to cherish these moments with the children, because they are over too soon. I laughed, well, probably snorted at them. What did they know? I had other things I wanted to do, too. What about my writing? What about the chance to socialize with people over the age of 4 every once in a while? When did I get to think about me for a change?
My feelings were a bit confusing.I had wanted to be a stay-at-home mom for so long. Why didn’t I enjoy it more?
Maybe part of it was because I had worked full-time since I was 18. Now, I finally had a chance to pursue my writing dreams and there were these little rugrats monopolizing all my time. I was in groups that ke…

First Teaser for the Next Rocky Bluff P.D. Crime Novel

Since I just sent off the corrections needed on the first galley proof for Murder in the Worst Degree  it will be a while until it will be available for purchase. The target date for publication is this coming March.

At this stage, I can't even envision a cover.

For those of you not familiar with this series, Rocky Bluff is a fictional beach town located between Santa Barbara and Ventura. And though it might have some similarities to Carpenteria, it's located farther south so it is in Ventura county. Despite the fact that it isn't a real place, it seems very real to me. I can see it in my mind's eye and of course I visit each time I write or think about one of the books.

The series centers around the men and women who work for the Rocky Bluff Police Department and their families. I like to think of them as an ensemble cast and hope that readers are like me and want to know how things are progressing in their lives.

Though every book is complete in that whatever crimes…

Our Writing Presentation

Shirley Hickman and Marilyn Meredith Shirley and I decided to give a presentation on How to Get Published. We weren't sure we'd have many attendees because we were in competition with many Christmas boutiques, but to our surprise a nice group showed up. We spoke about what it takes to be a writer, learning, finding the right publisher, and what to do once you've signed a contract and actually have a book. We come from two different perspectives as our journeys have been different. Yes, we had our books for sale, you can see them at each end of the table. But selling books is not why I do this. So why do you, you ask. Because I love sharing and helping new writers. If it hadn't been for all the writers along the way who were willing to give presentations and seminars, speak at conferences, I wouldn't be the writers I am today. I learned more from other writers than from any book I ever read about writing. I also love to speak about the writing process. And yes,…

Indian Paintbrush by Marilyn Meredith

Indian Paintbrush once had a different title. This is the first book of mine ever published way back in 1982. At that time it was called Trail to Glory--a name the publisher chose. Indian Paintbrush is a more fitting title as there are references to the flower all through the book.

An historical family saga, Indian Paintbrush, is based on family genealogy, my mother's side of the family. When my sister did the genealogy, I was amazed by how brave the women all were and able to support themselves when necessary in a time when women relied on men.

To write the story I had to do a lot of research about places and people I knew nothing about. I learned about early Wisconsin and the Menomenee Indians and made up a whole story about a young girl who disappeared. (The family legends about this were so far-fetched, I thought my version sounded far more realistic.)

I learned a lot about relatives I actually knew, like my great-aunt and my grandparents, even a big secret that never surfac…