Just the Facts, Ma'am

Thonie Hevron; bringing you the stories behind the badge

I’ve Had Lots of Help on my Writing Journey

By Marilyn Meredith

 

Me at Art ConIn the beginning, my sister helped me connect with a critique group because I couldn’t locate one where I lived. She read my chapters and reported the problems and suggestions to me. My sister has been a great support to me in many ways.

Through that support group I met an agent. Though he never offered my book to any publishers, he gave me lots of help with my writing.

When I moved to another area, I joined a long established critique group. In that group was a multi-published author named Willma Gore who mentored me for a long time and I owe a lot of my writing ability to her guidance. I’m still in the same group, though the members have changed many times. But the focus has continued on, to help each writer make his or her work even better. Criticism is necessary, because we authors often don’t notice our own flaws. I want to know what’s confusing, what doesn’t work, if I haven’t accomplished what I set out to do. Every mystery I’ve written has been heard by members of this group.

While thinking about critique groups, I must mention that I learned more about writing from the various members than from any class I ever attended or the many writing books I’ve read.

Many years ago, I joined what was called The Police Writers Club which has now evolved into the Public Safety Writers Association and has members from all different law enforcement agencies and other public safety fields, plus a few mystery writers like me. I became friends with many of the members who in turn have helped me in so many ways: answering questions about police procedure and giving me ideas for my mysteries. These men and women have become important to me in many ways.

Like Thonie, I hire an editor to go over my manuscript before I send it off to the publisher. I found the editor through the PSWA group and I chose her for two reasons, one she knows law enforcement, but second, and probably most important, she’s young and will catch anything that sounds like it came from an old lady (me.)

Despite the help of my critique group and my editor, errors still slip by. When the publisher sends back the text block or what is also called a galley, it is important to print it out and go over it carefully for any mistakes or inconsistencies. It’s much easier to find them on a printed page.

And of course, I receive much support from my writer friends too—those busy folks who are willing to let me be a visitor on his or her blog like I’m doing today. We don’t get to see each other often, but when we do at conferences and writers groups and meeting, itUnresolved’s wonderful to talk about the writing life and share ideas with people who understand. Yes, the writing life is solitary, but it’s important to get away and mingle with others, including readers.

This is the last stop in my blog tour. I hope it’s been helpful to writers and intriguing to readers.

FM aka Marilyn Meredith

 

#13 in the Rocky Bluff P.D. series, Unresolved:

Rocky Bluff P.D. is underpaid and understaffed and when two dead bodies turn up, the department is stretched to the limit. The mayor is the first body discovered, the second an older woman whose death is caused in a bizarre manner. Because no one liked the mayor, including his estranged wife and the members of the city council, the suspects are many, but each one has an alibi.

 

Bio: F. M. Meredith lived for many years in a small beach community much like Rocky Bluff. She has many relatives and friends who are in law enforcement and share their experiences and expertise with her. She taught writing for Writers Digest Schools for 10 years, and was an instructor at the prestigious Maui Writers Retreat, and has taught at many writers’ conferences. Marilyn is a member of three chapters of Sisters in Crime, Mystery Writers of America, and serves on the board of the Public Safety Writers of America. She lives in the foothills of the Sierra. Visit her at http://fictionforyou.com and her blog at http://marilymeredith.blogspot.com/

 

Webpage: http://fictionforyou.com

Blog: https://marilynmeredith.blogspot.com

Facebook: https://facebook.com/marilynmeredith

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

7 comments on “I’ve Had Lots of Help on my Writing Journey

  1. Our critique group is the main reason we were published in the first place. They not only helped us to improve our writing, they also pushed an nagged us to get it finished. We are still members of the group, and we still depend on them. In addition, even though I am a professional editor, I need more eyes on my work, so I use my beta readers for the final check. (Several of them are terrific proofreaders.

    Like

    • marilynm
      May 19, 2017

      Like me, you champion critique groups. Thanks for commenting, Lorna.

      Like

    • Thonie Hevron
      May 19, 2017

      My critique group operates the same way for me. They are the single most consistent push to write. Thanks for your comments, Lorna.

      Like

  2. marilynm
    May 19, 2017

    Thank you, Thonie, for hosting me once again, This was a fun post to write because I don’t get to thank folks enough for their help–and I’ve had plenty, even some I forgot to mention.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. JL Greger
    May 19, 2017

    This was one of your best blogs and they’re all great.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Information

This entry was posted on May 19, 2017 by in Writer's Notes and tagged , , .

Cop Talk

For all things about cop culture-the work, the family, the days off.

The purpose of this page is to educate writers of all genres to be accurate in their portrayal of law enforcement professionals. This includes meter maids (I was a "lovely Rita" many years ago), dispatcher, patrol officers, detectives, and administrators.

I have many resources in my 35 year career in California law enforcement. I index and explain common errors that found in all media. Guests will also post about police professionalism today and tomorrow as well as historical articles about the way things used to be, "back in the day".

Examples of police media myths: missing persons cannot be reported by anyone but the family; missing persons reports can't be taken until the subject has been missing 24 hours; all cops eat donuts.

You get my drift.

Goodreads

Schedule

Just the Facts, Ma'am posts Sundays and Wednesdays. Guest writers Gerry Goldshine, Hal Collier, Melissa Kositzin and sometime Woody Hoke take us through the days and nights of those who protect and serve. Extra postings will include California 'Officer Down' notices or something special. I will update progress of my current literary project as they develop. --Thonie Hevron

Just the Facts, Ma’am copyright

© Thonie Hevron, Just the Facts, Ma'am 2010-present. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Thonie Hevron with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Thank you.

Categories

Nancy's Notes From Florida

Author Nancy J. Cohen discusses the writing process and life as a Florida resident.

Logical Quotes

Logical and Inspirational quotes

RedheadedBooklover

Just a redheaded woman who is obsessed with books

Stories by The Spotlight on Medium

Thonie Hevron; bringing you the stories behind the badge

So you wanna be a cop?

Real world information for those looking for employment in Law Enforcement and Corrections and advice and stories from a veteran cop.

Donut County Cop

Random thoughts of a suburban cop at a department right outside a major US city...because blogging is cheaper than therapy.

Cop Musings

Thoughts From Behind the Badge

DAVE FREEDLAND

Author of Crime Mysteries & Suspense

The NW Fire Blog

"Public Safety News in the NW and Beyond"

The author's Blog

Discussions, Interviews, Suggestions for Writers

Hook'em and Book'em

Thonie Hevron; bringing you the stories behind the badge

clswinney.wordpress.com/

#1 International Bestselling Author of true crime.

Crissi Langwell ~ Author

Life and writing, and everything in between

Just the Facts, Ma'am

Thonie Hevron; bringing you the stories behind the badge

Horse Listening

Horses. Riding. Life.

JUSTICE FOR RAYMOND

Sudden, unexplained, unattended death and a families search for answers

Dog Leader Mysteries

saving dogs' lives & dog lovers' sanity

%d bloggers like this: