Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Meet OTP Author Marilyn Meredith!

Today on The Back Deck Blog, I'm hosting fellow Oak Tree Press author, Marilyn Meredith, author of the Rocky Bluff P.D. mysteries. Let's get to know one of OTP's more prolific authors!

Amy asked me to introduce myself. My name is Marilyn Meredith, but I write the Rocky Bluff P.D. mysteries as F. M. Meredith. I wish I’d stuck with the name everyone knows me by, but back when that first book was making the rounds of publishers; I thought using my initials might entice more men readers to pick up Final Respects. That might have worked, except the publisher who picked it up, put my picture on the back cover.

That particular publisher put out Final Respects and Bad Tidings. Problems ensued that I won’t go into, but I found another publisher for Fringe Benefits and Smell of Death. The books looked wonderful, but the publisher decided to close her company. So once again I had to find a home for the Rocky Bluff P.D. series.

I’d been attending (and planning the program for) the Public Safety Writers Association’s conference. One of the regular attendees was (and is) Billie Johnson, Oak Tree Press’s owner and publisher. We became friends, and I asked if she’d be interested in picking up the series. She asked me to be a speaker at a writers’ conference she’d organized in her hometown of Taylor, IL and I agreed. While I was there, she brought me a contract for the next book in the series, No Sanctuary. And as they say, the rest is history. I’ve been with Oak Tree Press for the rest of the series—and OTP has reprinted the earlier books.

There are 10 in all, including; An Axe to Grind, Angel Lost, No Bells, Dangerous Impulses, and the latest, Murder in the Worst Degree.

I also write the Deputy Tempe Crabtree mystery series which is with another publisher.

My goal with the Rocky Bluff P.D. series has always been to show what happens in the private lives of the officers, including family, affects the job, and what happens on the job affects their private lives.

This is what one person wrote about the latest, “A fun, fast read! Like I said on Goodreads, I enjoyed your novel like I enjoy episodes of Castle and Southland.”—Nancy LiPetri

In my own private life, I’m a wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. I have a huge family and we do a lot together. I write nearly every day.

My advice to anyone who is a writer or wants to write, is to read the kind of books you want to write, attend writers’ conferences, if you can find a good one, join a writers critique group, and write, write, write.

And probably, the most important, don’t give up. This isn’t an easy profession. I’ve known some wonderful writers who couldn’t take criticism or rejections and just quit. Quitting won’t get you published.

Thanks, Marilyn, for joining us today and letting us get to know you better, as well as giving us some great advice on writing (and anything else we want to do!) I hope my readers will take the opportunity to get to know more about you and your books!


  1. You are my hero! And you're a fantastic writer. Keep it up!

  2. Lorna, I looked all over for this and finally I found it. Guess you're a better detective than I am. And thanks for the kind words.

  3. Thank you, Amy, for having me today. I need to add that I did the program planning for PSWA until after last year's conference when I turned it all over to Mike Black.

    1. It's a pleasure having you, Marilyn, and getting to know you better... not to mention expanding my "to read" list considerably!

  4. Marilyn your advice to writers is "write-on." Glad you've found a good home for the Rocky Bluff PD Series. Look forward to more.

  5. Hi, Diane. Glad you approve. Struggling a bit with this next one, the story is coming, finding the time is the problem.

  6. Marilyn, I love your passion and positivity! Thanks for the great tips!

  7. Thank you very much, Joseph. I've been at this for a long time--made every mistake in the book, but I just keep writing.