Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Spunky Marilyn Meredith Is Having Too Much Fun to Retire!

Marilyn Meredith Says:
Having Way Too Much Fun to Retire

Marilyn Meredith as a flower girl
 I’ve retired from other jobs, but I’m certainly not ready to retire from writing and promoting.

Some people think writing is a nice quiet job for a senior—let me tell you it is far from that.

Marilyn Meredith and hubby, Hap, on Wedding Day

I was a grandmother when I went on my first ride-along. I’ve been on two more since then. I’ve flown all over the country to attend writer and mystery cons, sometime with my husband sometimes not.

The “not” was twice when I flew to Alaska. The first time I flew from Anchorage to Bethel in a commuter plane, and was picked up in a suburban and driven on a frozen river to a school in a small village. The second time I hitched a ride from Anchorage with someone I’d just met to go to Wasilla. There I stayed with a friend I made on the first trip. One of my days there I spent at a middle school talking to every class about how to write a mystery.

I’m still the newsletter editor for the California Residential Services Association for administrators of licensed care homes and I continue to do consulting for them.

One of the most satisfying and fun jobs I have, though really time consuming, is planning the yearly writing conference for the Public Safety Writers Association. Through this organization I’ve made friends with people in the FBI and every other sort of law enforcement agency you can think of and lots of mystery writers.
Marilyn with hubby, Hap, in church

At their conference, my hubby of 61 years helps with the book selling and I think he enjoys everyone as much as I do.

We now have 18 grandkids and 13 great-grands. We love spending time with our kids and their offspring. The one thing we have retired from is babysitting.

Marilyn Meredith's current
mystery release
About Raging Water:  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.

CONTEST: The person who leaves comments on the most blogs will have his/her name used for a character in my next book—can choose if you want it in a Deputy Tempe Crabtree mystery or a Rocky Bluff P.D. crime novel.

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. 

Visit Marilyn Meredith at and follow her blog at

Please leave a comment to welcome Marilyn Meredith to Spunky Senior Authors and Talents.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Meet Spunky 81 Year Old Author Charmaine Gordon, Once The Stand-In Leg Model for Geraldine Ferarro

So happy to be visiting with you, Morgan. I’ve enjoyed many of your senior blogs and decided to jump in.
  A bit about my past: Born in the good/bad old days of Chicago when sometimes you saw big Packard’s with hoodlums riding on running boards, tommy guns at the ready. Later Dad prospered and we moved to a better neighborhood. I married my high school sweetheart and became an Air Force bride raising too many children as we moved from base to base. Writing, directing, and performing in skits for the Officer’s Club helped develop a sense of self while my pilot was on temporary duty overseas. As civilians we settled within driving distance to NYC and there I pursued my dream of working professionally as an actor. Daytime drama, commercials, movies and off Broadway kept me busy. I never expected to be a star but it was a sweet time working with Harrison Ford, Michael Douglas, Anthony Hopkins, and Billy Crystal to mention a few. My very first job was stand in leg model for Geraldine Ferarro in a Pepsi commercial. She was on the Democratic ticket with Michael Dukakis at the time, first female ever to be in that lofty position.
During the run of an Off Broadway play, an idea for a story came to me. I’d read many scripts, knew my way around dialogue and set direction and with no other prep, I began to write. Luck smiled upon me as I wrote queries, shrugged off rejections and before long a publisher offered a contract! An author is born. After two years, her company went out of business BUT another author, Chelle Cordero, bought my book and told her publisher about me. So here I am at 81 with six books to my credit, a few short stories, and more books on the way.

Charmaine's Daughter Jumping

Charmaine's Granddaughter Jumping
When I wrote Reconstructing Charlie I never dreamed another story began after I typed The End. But two minor characters kept bugging me and so I wrote Sin of Omission.
Reconstructing Charlie:

  Charlie Costigan has a secret. Home life gone from bad to the worst when she protects her mother from another vicious attack by her drunken father. Midnight. Clothes thrown into an old suitcase, she races for the bus with a letter to an unknown aunt and uncle. “This is my daughter. Embrace her as if she were your own.”

Determined, Charlie begins again. Alone with her secret.

Sin of Omission:
  Seems easy enough. Jimmy Costigan will deliver supplies to sister Charlie's project Haven, a respite for the needy, and leave.
Instead, Shelley Jackson answers the door, says she needs him and soft-hearted Jimmy stays to protect the family seeking refuge from a sociopath. He didn't count on falling in love.
A twist of fate intervenes when Shelley keeps a secret that threatens to break apart the Costigans and her future. A mysterious client, Deanna Rose, enters Haven, victim of a savage beating under strange circumstances. Using Internet resources, Shelley digs in to find Ms. Rose has an unsavory past.

With the reputation and safety of Haven at stake, Shelley is at risk to lose everything ... and everyone she cares about.\

In this tech world that makes me dizzy, if you’d like to chat I can be reached at the following links.

About writing: Nothing prepared me for the glorious feeling and power of writing. Imagine the thrill, the control over fictional characters. You decide when they meet, how they appear and feel using your senses. And how about the evil someone? Should he/she die of a disease, get stabbed, shot? It’s all in your imagination. There is so much to explore and have fun with if you open your veins and let your emotions out. Yes, it’s messy with all the tears but remember the reward of laughter and sweet memories you can incorporate into a story. I don’t outline because I fly by the seat of my pants with an idea of what lies ahead and how it ends allowing the characters to live and direct me. Maybe I’m not a real writer, trained in school. I’ve come to this amazing craft late in life so all I can do is bring my life experience, leave fear behind and write in a style I call loose. That’s me. Loose.
My advice to a newbie is this: You say you have a story to tell. TELL IT! Maybe begin with Remember When and write a short memoir without censoring yourself. Have a little fun with the blank white page.
The hard work comes after you’ve written a book. Promotion. OMG! No one prepared me for this. On this happy note I say thanks again to Morgan for this lovely opportunity to visit and talk about my books that my publisher, Kimberlee Williams at Vanilla Heart, calls Survive & Thrive stories.
Check out for more about Charmaine Gordon.

Please welcome Charmaine to Spunky Senior Authors and Talents by Leaving a Comment.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Spunky Lesley Cookman Is Quintessentially English

 Lesley started writing almost as soon as she could read, and filled many exercise books with pony stories until she was old enough to go out with boys.

Since she's been grown up, following a varied career as a model, actor, air stewardess and disc jockey, she's written short fiction and features for a variety of magazines, achieved an MA in Creative Writing from the University of Wales, taught writing for both Kent Adult Education and the WEA and edited the first Sexy Shorts collection of short stories from Accent Press in aid of the Breast Cancer Campaign. 

The Libby Sarjeant series is published by Accent Press, who also publish her book, How to Write a Pantomime, with a foreword by Roy Hudd.   Lesley is a member of the Romantic Novelists' Association, the Society of Authors and the Crime Writers' Association. 

I’m very pleased to be invited to this blog of which, as an English writer, I had never heard! My books, available in print or ebook, are quintessentially English and fall into what is now known as the “cosy” category, but follows the pattern of the Golden Age British Detective story.

They were my favourite reading from the age of nine, when my parents first allowed me to read a book by Carter Dickson. I went on to become a model, an actor, British Airways cabin crew and finally, a free lance journalist and editor. I also wrote short fiction for women’s magazines and pantomimes, that peculiarly British form of Christmas entertainment. The pantomimes are still performed in theatres across Britain every year. 

Murder by Magic is the tenth in the Libby Sarjeant series, and you can buy it here:

Amazon UK Link:

You can reach Lesley at:
Follow Lesley on Twitter @LesleyCookman

Please welcome Lesley Cookman to Spunky Senior Authors and Talents by Leaving a Comment.