I met Marilyn this past year at the Public Safety Writers Association convention, where she and her husband are legends. I was so impressed with the works she has written that I wanted to share her story with you!
I’ve written nearly my whole life—a very long life, however, I didn’t get published until I was a grandmother. My mystery writing didn’t begin until after I’d published two fictionalized historical family sagas based on the genealogy of both sides of my family. It didn’t take long to know what I wanted to write next—mysteries.
I began with my Rocky Bluff P.D. series because my son-in-law was a police officer and stopped at my house at the end of his graveyard shift for coffee and told me of all his adventures. The first in the series is FINAL RESPECTS and authored as F.M. Meredith. There are 17 books in the series.
We moved to the foothills of the Sierra near an Indian reservation, and it wasn’t long before I had met interesting people from the area and the rez. Ideas popped into my head, and I began the Tempe Crabtree series with DEADLY TRAIL. I incorporated things and events told to me by Indians and others living in the community. There are now 20 titles in the series.
I enjoyed writing both series, but I’m done. Rocky Bluff is a small town, the police department underfunded, but police equipment has become so sophisticated now I didn’t feel I could do a respectable job incorporating any of it in my novels.
With the Tempe Crabtree series, I knew it was time to quit. I loved writing about Tempe and her adventures. I knew Tempe better than I knew most people, because I knew how she thought and what she would do in any situation. However, she’d reached retirement age, and though she did still get involved with solving mysteries after retirement, she and her husband needed to move on.
The last book in the series is A FINAL FAREWELL. One of the ongoing charcters in the later books is Miqui Sherwood, someone based on a friend. I put her in one of the mysteries at her request. For this book, she asked to have a boyfriend, so I gave her two. There are major changes in Tempe’s and her husband’s lives.
My favorite in the RBPD series is MURDER IN THE WORST DEGREE. It has a great first sentence and lots of excitement.
I’m unable to choose a favorite in the Tempe Crabtree series. I like each one for different reasons. Because I wrote these mysteries in close third person, all from Tempe’s POV, she definitely helped drive the plots.
In the Rocky Bluff PD series, there are many POV characters. The plots often came from who the murder victim was and those who had reason to want to see him or her dead.
With any book, I always began by developing the characters, including what challenges on-going characters might face.
Though I’ve finished both series, I’m still writing. My latest project is a memoir that includes my childhood during World War II.
Marilyn Meredith aka F.M. Meredith
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While continuing my own quest to read authors new to me, a lot of my reading time has been spent in research for my current projects. Along the way, I have become more aware of the wealth of information available via podcasts...something many of you probably listen to on a regular basis. Here are a few I've discovered of late and look to be available wherever you listen to your podcasts:
Powers on Policing - https://powersonpolicing.com/ Bill Powers has an extensive background in law enforcement, as well as being an attorney himself. His interviews with others in law enforcement are truly enlightening.
Pick Your Poison - https://pickpoison.com/ Hosted by Dr. JP (fictitious), who describes herself as "an ER doctor and toxicologist with a passion for poisons". While she is clear in stating that each episode is not to be taken as medical advice, it hopefully provides education and entertainment. I think they're fascinating.
Game of Books - https://gameofbookspodcast.com/ I have mentioned this site previously, but it is worth mentioning again. Cathie and Christie provide great fun and entertainment while interviewing their guests and sipping their glasses of wine.
HAPPY HOLIDAYS !