Tag Archive for: No Bells

Planning Ahead for a New Rocky Bluff P. D. Mystery Debut

I don’t have a cover yet, but the the title is Dangerous Impulses. This follows No Bells which centered on Officer Gordon Butler, whose romantic interest is the major suspect in murder case. He risks his life and his job to prove her innocent.

For those who might be interested in catching up on the series, my whole idea when I wrote the first one, was to show how the job of being a police officer affected the family and what was going on in the family affected the job.

When I wrote, Final Respects, I had no idea it would be the beginning of an on-going series.

When I’d finished writing, I realized that I wanted to know more about these people who lived and worked in the small southern California beach community of Rocky Bluff.

Though the characters continue, different ones have starring roles. In Bad Tidings, Lt. Gilbreath often has to be the bearer of bad tidings and receives one of his own.

Fringe Benefits is about a very bad cop. It is also the introduction of Officer Gordon Butler, who has become the favorite of fans of the series.

Officer Stacey Wilbur plays an important role in Smell of Death and it is the beginning of the romance between her and Detective Milligan.

No Sanctuary is about two churches, two ministers, two wives and one murder. Officer Stacey Wilbur, Detective Milligan and Gordon Butler play interesting parts, and Stacey begins her extra job in vice.

An Axe to Grind is about the death of a stalker. For those following Stacey and Doug Milligan’s romance, things are definitely heating up.

Stacey is so busy planning her wedding she isn’t paying enough attention to the job–and there almost isn’t a wedding in Angel Lost.

And of course, No Bells, where Officer Gordon Butler puts his job on the line in his efforts to prove his lady love innocent.

Of course all these books are available in the usual places in paper and ebooks.

Just remember, I wrote them as F. M. Meredith, which is a whole other story.

Marilyn aka F. M. Meredith

Is It Really Worth It?

My latest Rocky Bluff P.D. mystery, No Bells, (sort of a cozy police procedural) has been out since February and I’ve been promoting it like crazy. In fact, half of my time has been taken up with promotion of it and the next book coming in my Deputy Tempe Crabtree mystery series.

This one features Officer Gordon Butler. Poor guy, nothing seems to go right for him. He’s the butt of jokes. In No Bells he finally falls in love with the “girl of his dreams” but she turns out to be the prime suspect in a murder case. He is willing to risk his job and his life to prove her innocent.

Gordon has many fans. When he was looking for a room to rent, one of the fans of this series for a moment considered offering him her extra bedroom.

I promoted the heck out of this book, arranged a fun month-long blog tour, received glowing reviews, promoted on Facebook and Twitter and of course my own blog, attended conference and had in-person events but when my publisher posted the best selling books for the quarter, No Bells wasn’t on the list.

This series has been published by two other publishers. Oak Tree Press is now the publisher and she has republished all the previous books in the series. I know there are some readers out there who like to start at the beginning of a series–so I’m hoping this is a good thing.

This is the order of the series:

Final Respects
When I wrote this I didn’t plan to continue the series, but I fell in love with the characters and wondered what would happen to them next.
Bad Tidings
This offering focuses on Lt. Gilbreath and the bad news he has to deliver to families of victims and some bad news of his own.
Fringe Benefits
The story of a very bad cop and how he nearly gets away with murder.
Smell of Death
Officer Stacey Wilbur and Detective Milligan work together on three murder cases and this is where their romance begins.
No Sanctuary
A tale of two churches, two ministers, two wives and one murder–and the romance continues.
An Axe to Grind
A decapitation of a stalker leads to Detective Milligan’s disappearance. Though the subject is grim, one reader said despite that, it was humorous.
Angel Lost
Stacey plans her wedding, captures a pervert–and disappears on her wedding day. An angel appears in a downtown window.
No Bells (description is above.)

Though this is an on going series, each book is written as a stand-alone. They do not need to be read in order, though most of the characters continue on.

My intention all along has been to show how the job affects the family and what goes on in the family affects the job. Years ago I lived in a neighborhood filled with police officers and their families, I had lots of coffee and conversations with the wives, and as couples we partied together. Later my son-in-law became a cop and told me his stories after his shift. The tradition has continued and I have a grandson who is a police officer and a grandson-in-law who is a deputy sheriff.

Rocky Bluff, where the stories take place, is a fictional beach town in California between Ventura and Santa Barbara.

These books are written under the name F. M. Meredith and are available in all the usual places as trade paperback and ebooks.

Now I’m working on the next one in the series–untitled as yet.

Marilyn aka F. M. Meredith

Left Coast Crime Report

Today I came home from Left Coast Crime in Sacramento. I arrived by train in California’s capital 1t 12:30 p.m. and my panel was at 2:45. Whew! I checked into the hotel, took my suitcases to my room, headed back down to the reception area and registered for the conference.

I’m not exactly sure what else I did, probably found something to eat, but it was soon time to head for the room where my panel was located. Going anywhere involved going up or down two flights of stairs (until someone pointed out the way to use the elevators–unfortunately on my 3rd day at the con.)

My fellow panelists are in the back row from left to right:
Susan C. Miller, Clark Lohr, Vicki Doudera
Front row left to right: Me and Madeline Gornell

Our subject was Writing for Small Presses

The room was packed, and I think we did a great job telling why we’d gone with small presses, our experiences good and bad, and we were asked many, many questions. I even had one your woman ask to pick my brain privately. Of course I agreed and she talked to me for about 20 minutes.

Was this good way to sell books? Not particularly because we were told not to bring our books to show despite the fact that we were herded to the book room to sign books that no one really knew what to look for.

However, that did not keep me from have a grand time. Best of all was seeing so many author and reader friends that I haven’t seen for far too long. I received and gave so many hugs, sat in the lounge and gabbed away, ate goodies and talked some more in the hospitality room, shared wonderful meals with so many friends.

All the panels I attended were great, the author sparkled.

Everyone asked about my husband who stayed home to fix our oven. It’s amazing how many remember his name.

Monday morning I received my 4 a.m. wake up call. Got ready, finished packing. Looked over the hotel bill they’d shoved under the door–and of course it was wrong. So before I could check out I had to spend time with the desk clerk explaining what was my part of the bill and what belonged to my roommate. A taxi took me to the train station and I was on my way home by 6:45 a.m. The train sure beats going by air and it was lots cheaper.

Now that I’m home, I playing catch-up like crazy. And tomorrow is the first day of my blog tour for No Bells. The first stop is here: http://blog.marjamcgraw.com/

I’m giving away copies of prior books in the Rocky Bluff P.D. series to the person who comments on the most blogs. You can find the schedule on my blog site,Marilyn’s Musings

 To tell the truth, I think I’ve got far too much to do. 

Marilyn a.k.a. F. M. Meredith


Need to Take My Own Advice

Managing our time has been a frequent topic on this blog. I’m always quick to give advice on the subject. This week I realized that I need to heed what I spew out to others.

One thing I gave up doing long ago was housework. The last few years I’ve had someone in the family who needed extra money and was willing to clean my house for me. I still do touch-ups and clean bathrooms that need that extra scrub.

Right now I’m gearing up for the launch and promotion of the 8th in my Rocky Bluff P.D. crime series due out sometime this month. To categorize what kind of book it is, I call it a cozy police procedural. Though it’s pretty far along in the series, I write each book as a stand-alone so it isn’t necessary to read the books in order. I’m setting up the in-person launch at our local used book store. There are no other bookstores within an hour plus driving time.

But what’s really been taking up time is that I decided to plan my own blog tour. I now know why those who do this professionally charge as much as they do. First you have to find blogs who are willing to host you–and ones that might get a bit different traffic–and coordinate the dates. I always ask them what they’d like me to write about so that each post will be different. The group I gathered together came up with some splendid topics and interview questions. Then, of course, I had to write the posts and add all the information about my book, send them to the appropriate person along with my book cover and a photo of me. This time instead of sending my usual photo, I sent a different one for each post.

This will be happening during the month of April and a couple of days into May. To add to the craziness, I also signed on with eight authors to do another blog tour right in the middle of mine. This one will only last eight days, but it will be labor intensive. I’ll be busy promoting all these blogs and doing all the needed commenting.

This month I’ll be attending Epicon which is the convention for E-published authors and E-publishers in San Antonio. I’m giving a presentation on blogging and blog tours. My publisher is attending so I’ll also be spending some time with her. Soon after returning, I’ll be heading for Left Coast Crime. I’ll get home just a couple of days before my blog tour begins.

Somewhere in all this I need to be working on my latest manuscript.

Poor hubby, he’ll be disappointed if I don’t take a day now and then for us to head to town, have lunch out and take in a movie. He’s going with me to San Antonio so maybe that will count for some of our together time.

Like someone commented on a earlier post, my “me time” is when I’m writing.

One other thing I can’t miss is the fact that Dancing With the Stars is soon to begin. I can pass up a lot of reality TV, but I love Dancing. Hubby likes it now too, so that’ll be part of our together time.

Next month I’ll let you know if this has all been way too much for this great-grandmother to cope with.