Tag Archive for: Raging Water

What I’ve Been Up to in the Writing World

I’m a great believe in not putting all of your eggs in one basket. This belief comes from experience. I’ve had two publishers die, three close their doors, dealt with three crooked publishers, had agents who did nothing and I truly mean nothing (when I asked to see rejection letters was given one after 4 years of my thinking the agent was busily working for me).

Because of that past history, at the moment I have three publishers.

My Rocky Bluff P.D. series is published by Oak Tree Press, a small independent publisher. The latest book in that series is Dangerous Impulses. I’ve already written the next one and my critique group is hearing it (and critiquing it) chapter by chapter. Next I’ll have it edited before I send it off.

My Deputy Tempe Crabtree series is published by Mundana Press, also an independent publisher, but much larger than OTP. The next book is called Spirit Shapes and should be available in early fall. I don’t have a cover yet–but I am busily working on a blog tour for October.

The previous book was called Raging Water. I’ll soon be planning the next one.

In the meantime, I’ve been rewriting and editing some older books for Kindle. No, I’m not doing them myself, just don’t have time right now. I’ve gone with a brand new ebook company for these. They approached me and I thought, heck why not.

The first one out, and only .99 is Deadly Feast. It had another life another a different title. That publisher is no longer in business and rights reverted back to me. None of that publisher’s books were on Kindle.
Deadly Feast is a mystery and began as a Deputy Tempe Crabtree tale–however when I was through, I knew it wasn’t Tempe so I changed the main character and the setting, but Tempe fans will recognize some similarities.

And then, I sent them what I call a YA Christian horror–Deeds of Darkness, and it now available for Kindle too. It is a very scarey tale and the young heroine is a Christian. This was written a long time ago, so I had some updating to do, but It was fun. Though the book does have witches in it who cause all kinds of havoc in the small town of Yokut Springs, the cover is more sensational than the content of the story.

It is a great story for Halloween.

And last, I am editing and updating yet another horror novel–this one for adults–with Christian overtones and really scary. It’s called Cup of Demons.

And that’s what I’ve been doing lately.


Figuring Out What to Write Next in a Series

I’m going to refer to my Deputy Tempe Crabtree series and how I come up with the next book to write.

For those of you who are not familiar with Tempe, she’s a resident deputy in the large area surrounding Bear Creek, a small village in the Southern Sierra. (Sierra means mountain.) It’s in the central part California.

Tempe is part Indian, one of the Bear Creek Indian tribes. (There is no such thing, but the Bear Creek Indian Reservation that appears in the story is much like the Tule River Indian Reservation. The Indians who live there call themselves Tule Indians but most of them are Yokuts.)

 Because of Tempe’s experience using an Indian ritual to call back the dead, she is sometimes visited by the ghosts of those who have passed on. Not a comfortable experience. 

Tempe is married to Hutch Hutchinson, the local preacher. He doesn’t approve of some of native ceremonies she’s participated in, though he’s become more tolerant through the years.

Tempe has an Indian friend named Nick Two John who she often consults when she can’t figure something out. At times, Hutch, has experienced a bit of jealousy over his wife’s friendship–but now he and Two John are friends.

I’ve written about murders in and around Bear Creek and even on the reservation. I’ve taken Tempe away from the area to investigate crimes.

While thinking about what I was going to write next I thought it might be fun to write about a haunted house.
When I began writing more ideas popped up concerning devil worship, evil spirits, old crimes, and of course, murder.

The book, Spirit Shapes, is done and at the publishers awaiting the editing process.

While waiting, I’m working on the next in the Rocky Bluff P.D. series.

Readers, what do you expect in an ongoing series?

Writers of series, where do you get your ideas for the next book?


Available now as a print book and ebook.

More About Titles

Bethany’s post about title made me think about my own titles.

For my Deputy Tempe Crabtree mysteries, I’ve used a lot of quotations from Native Americans and plucked a couple of words out of them for titles such as Invisible Path, Wing Beat and Dispel the Mist. The one that I’m working on now has a title from an Indian quotation, Spirit Shapes. However, I don’t always do that, last year’s was Raging Water which came from the fact that most of the troubles going on in the little town of Bear Creek were because the river had swollen to flood conditions.

This series I write as Marilyn Meredith.

F.M. Meredith is the name I use for my Rocky Bluff P.D. series.

I never seemed to have any problem coming up with title for my Rocky Bluff P.D. series because the story itself seemed to create it.

Final Respects The story of the death of a popular police officer, a mortician and a mortuary, and a funeral.

The many bad tidings that police officers must deliver was easily named Bad Tidings.

A bad cop uses his job for nefarious means in Fringe Benefits.

Smell of Death has three gruesome murders and is the beginning of the romance between Officer Stacey Wilbur and Detective Doug Milligan.

Two churches, two ministers and two wives and murder made No Sancturary  a logical title.

An Axe to Grind besides being a play on words also refers to the murder weapon.

And Angel Lost is also a play on words and refers to two plot threads.

The reason for the title No Bells isn’t revealed until the end.

The latest book in the series was harder for me to name–in fact, one of the members of my critique group came up with the title Dangerous Impulses.

I am working on the latest and I had the title before I really had an idea for the plot. One of my fans suggested it, and it’s a great title and immediately let me know what my Rocky Bluff P.D. detectives would be faced with. No, I’m not going to tell you what it is just yet.

Marilyn aka F. M. Meredith

Most Fun Book Launch Ever

One of my friends who is also a big fan of the Deputy Tempe Crabtree series kept begging to be a character in one of my books. “I don’t care if I’m a murderer or if you kill me off, please put me in a Tempe book.”

I finally obliged her. I didn’t use her name, but I put all the rest of her in–her personality, her looks, her passions, her house,  and her dogs. The character Miqui Sherwood is really my friend. Miqui and her dogs are an important part of the story.

The book was at the publishers and ever so often, my friend would call, “Is the book here yet?”

We planned a  book launch at our local Inn (there’s one in the book) that had just reopened. I made postcards for us both to send out and big posters for the Inn to display. I got a piece into the newspaper and promo was on the radio about the launch.

In the meantime her doctors gave her the devastating news that she had a rare form and most difficult type of cancer with a 50/50 chance of cure. She began radiation and chemo treatments. The book came and she began reading a copy. I couldn’t help but wonder if she’d be feeling well enough to enjoy the launch.

Her last chemo treatment was the morning of the launch. She arrived soon after I’d set up the parlor of the Inn with my books and a delicious cake decorated like the book cover. I need not have worried, she looked and felt amazingly good.

Most of the people who came were her friends. I talked about her part in the book. She said she was amazed by how much I knew about her. And by the way, she loved the book and her party. She signed the books right along with me.

After the launch was over, a bunch of us stayed at the Inn and had a lovely dinner.

It was great event in many ways, and most of all that my friend had such a good time.


Raging Water
Blurb: Deputy Tempe Crabtree’s
investigation of the murder of two close friends is complicated when relentless
rain turns Bear Creek into a raging river. Homes are inundated and a mud slide
blocks the only road out of Bear Creek stranding many—including the murderer.

I know there are some
people who like to read a series in order, but let me reassure you that every
book is complete. Though the characters grow through each book, the crime is
always solved. Here is the order of the books for anyone who wants to know:
Deadly Trail, Deadly Omen, Unequally Yoked, Intervention, Wing Beat, Calling
the Dead, Judgment Fire, Kindred Spirits, Dispel the Mist, Invisible Path,
Bears With Us, Raging Water.

Marilyn Meredith is the author of over thirty published
novels, including the award winning Deputy Tempe Crabtree mystery series, the
latest Raging Water from Mundania Press. Writing as F. M.
Meredith, her latest Rocky Bluff P.D. crime novel us No Bells, the forth from
Oak Tree Press. Marilyn is a member of EPIC, three chapters of Sisters in
Crime, Mystery Writers of America, and on the board of the Public Safety
Writers of America. 

Marilyn borrows a lot from where she lives in the Southern
Sierra for the town of Bear Creek and the surrounding area.