Friday, April 29, 2016

S.D. Skye's Hell or High Water 365 Day Blogathon Post 213 -- Author F. M. Meredith

Fiction Friday

Please welcome today... 

F.M. Meredith

Tell us about your journey to become a published author?

I've written since I could--probably began around 10 years old. Though I knew I wanted to be an author all my life, I didn't get serious about sending manuscripts to publishers until I was a grandmother. (I'd made some failed attempts much earlier, but rejections discouraged me.) My first and second books to be published were historical family sagas based on my own family genealogy, Next one after that was a mystery--and though I've written in other genres (horror of one sort or another), I've settled down quite happily with mysteries.

What sparked the idea for this series?

My Rocky Bluff P.D. mystery series came about because of my son-in-law who was a police officer. He came to my house every day after his graveyard shift for coffee and told me what he'd done on the job. We also had many police officers and their families living in our neighborhood. I observed how the job influenced the families and what was going on in the family influenced the job. Besides the mystery, I  include aspects of the officers' personal lives. 

Tell us about your latest release.

A Crushing Death focuses on a religious cult, a horrifying accusation, and a criminal seeking revenge on RBPD's new police chief, and how her department protects her.

Give five words that best describe this book. What message do you hope readers get?

Murder, suspense, beach, police, family
How important family and friends can be in police work.          

Give us one or two of your favorite lines from this book.

It never failed. On a holiday or a scheduled day off, or right in the middle of a great night’s sleep, the phone rang, like it just did.

Without opening his eyes, Detective Doug Milligan reached for his phone and answered. “Milligan.”

Tell us about your writing space and your daily routine.

My office is never tidy. Around me and my computer are many books and ongoing notes concerning the manuscript I'm working on. I have a view of the foothills and mountains beyond from the window by my desk.

I try to write at least 5 days a week, and mostly in the early morning.  If things are going well, I may write any time that the thoughts are tumbling out. When I'm no actually writing, I do think about my work-in-progress and new ideas pop into my mind.

What’s one of your favorite reviews/comments you’ve ever received about your writing (on this book or any other)? Who did it come from and how did it impact you?

J. Michael Orenduff, author of the award-winning Pot Thief murder mysteries.

“F. M. Meredith’s has done it again, produced another immensely satisfying episode in her Rocky Bluff Police Department murder mystery series. Think Ed McBain’s 87th precinct series mellowed out in a California beach town. Dangerous Impulses, the eighth (?) book in the series, finds Gordon Butler orienting a new officer, the drop-dead beautiful Lizette Gibbs, and fans of the series immediately know the loveable but somewhat hapless Butler is going to fall hard…
“Meredith is the reigning master of ‘cop life’ stories dealing with how work and family push and pull on the psyches of officers. …Meredith weaves the personal and the professional into a story so seamless that we come to believe the people we are reading about are real.”
"With its terse prose, ingenious plot, heart -warming moments, suspense and satisfying wrap-up, Dangerous Impulses will keep Meredith’s fans happy and win her many new ones."
Because I love Orenduff's series, I'm thrilled he likes mine. I also like the fact he really understands what I've tried to do with this series.
What’s your biggest struggle as a writer (or what was your worst critique)? And how do/did you handle it?

Finding the time to promote as well as write is always a struggle. I try to write first--but sometimes, like when I'm doing a blog tour, the promotion must come first.

When I do get an unfavorable review, I don't dwell on it. The many good ones far outweigh any bad ones.          

What is the high point of your career, so far?

Anytime a reader lets me know that they've enjoyed a book, that's enough for me. I write because I have to, yes, that's true, and it's great to know that others are reading and enjoying what I've written. I've won a couple of awards, and of course that was exciting, but still readers' compliments are worth far more to me.    
What was the low point of your career? And how did you handle it?

When one of my publishers, who'd become a close friend, died. That was hard. I found a new publisher as soon as possible. I've had publishers who turned out to be crooks and a couple who decided not be publishers anymore, but the death of a friend was the most difficult.  

Give us the name of a recent book you’ve read that you would highly recommend to readers.

I absolutely loved Ordinary Grace by Wm. Kent Krueger. I enjoy his mystery series too, but this stand-alone was unique.         

What’s next on your writing journey?

Because I write two series a year, I'm usually promoting one while writing and editing the other. Keeps me busy--or as the saying goes, out of mischief.

What’s your favorite book on the writing craft or your favorite piece of advice to writers?

I have a collection of books on the writing craft. For new writers, be sure to read books in the genre you plan to write, and then write, write as much as possible.

Where can we find you online?

Face book:
Goodreads: http://goodreads. com/marilynmeredith"   

And where can we find your books online?

Here's the link for the first in the series:
And the one before the newest, Violent Departures:

Thanks so much for joining us today! It was great having you. Come back when you release your next book!    

If you're an author and would like your thriller, mystery, romantic suspense, or suspense novel featured, please fill out the interview at:


  1. Thank you so much for hosting me today. I enjoyed the interview.

  2. After so many published books, do you have a favorite or do they all become favorites when you work on them?

  3. My latest ones are usually my favorites, Elaine--but I do have a fondness for Murder in the Worst Degree for several reasons.

  4. Like you, Marilyn, I try to write first. If I get online, I find my writing hours almost gone. But promotion is necessary. I enjoy d this interview.

  5. Loved your answers, Marilyn, very insightful. I, too, find the promotion hardest. I'm in awe of how much you do and how well you do it!

    1. I run out of steam much sooner these days than I used to, Susan.

    2. Hey, Susan, the promotion just takes up too much time--even though at times it's fun.

  6. I always appreciate writers that make police officers human, which of course we are. I have six children are grown now, but my family was both an anchor and a challenge. They anchored me because no matter what I encountered on the job there was always my children and my wife to bring me down to earth. A challenge, because not all my children were angels and I spent way too much time on the job and not enough with them. Disciplining them was hard for me seeing so much child abuse on the job. Fortunately, they have turned out to be good citizens despite my shortcomings. I now have 11 grandchildren and 3 great grandchildren. Keep up the good work, Marilyn, police have received some serious criticisms lately most of which is undeserved.

    1. It's friends like you who have helped me make my fictional officers as real as I can. You've been most helpful to me.

  7. Thank you, D. J. for your comment. It is way to easy to fritter away the day. Right now promotiong is taking most of my time.

  8. Nice to hear about your journey...gosh, all those publishers who came and went. Sad! But I'm glad you're slogging on. I just read your book, Dangerous Impulses, and enjoyed it very much. Reviews of it on Amazon and Goodreads. Five stars! Mush on, my friend!

    1. Thank you, thank you, Rolynn, for the review! Very much appreciated!

  9. Thanks everyone for stopping by! So glad to have you share your insights with us, Marilyn!

  10. Marilyn, I keep learning something new about you each day! Skye asked some great questions.


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