If you are interested in blogging or want to promote your book, please contact E. B. Davis at writerswhokill@gmail.com.













July Interview Schedule:
7/3 Jean Stone A Vineyard Summer
7/10 Mark Bergin
7/17 Christin Brecher Murder's No Votive Confidence
7/24 Dianne Freeman A Ladies' Guide to Gossip
7/31 J. C. Kenney A Genuine Fix

Saturday Guest Bloggers: 7/6 V. M. Burns, 7/13 Joe Amiel,

WWK Satuday Bloggers: 7/20 Gloria Alden, 7/27 Kait Carson

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Congratulations to our writers for the following publications:


Susan Van Kirk's A Death At Tippett Pond was released on June 15th. Read E. B. Davis's interview with Susan.


KM Rockwood's "Frozen Daiquiris" appears in The Best Laid Plans: 21 Stories of Mystery & Suspense, edited by Judy Penz Sheluk. The anthology will be released on June 18th.

Congratulations to Margaret S. Hamilton for being a finalist in the Daphne Du Maurier contest. Margaret competes in the Unpublished/Mainstream mystery/suspense category.

Congratulations to Shari Randall for WINNING the Agatha Award for Best First Novel. Her book, Curses, Boiled Again was published by St. Martin's last year. Read the interview about the book here. Yay, Shari!

Fishy Business anthology authors include KM Rockwood, Debra Goldstein, and James M. Jackson. This volume was edited by Linda Rodriguez.

Please read Margaret S. Hamilton and Debra Goldstein's short stories (don't ask about their modus operandi) in a new anthology, Cooked To Death Vol. IV: Cold Cut Files

Warren Bull's Abraham Lincoln: Seldom Told Stories was released. It is available at: GoRead: https://www.goread.com/book/abraham-lincoln-seldom-told-stories or at Amazon: https://tinyurl.com/ydaklx8p

Grace Topping's mystery, Staging is Murder was released April 30.

James M. Jackson extends the Seamus McCree series with the May 25th publication of #6, False Bottom.

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Thursday, April 4, 2019

Happy To Be Blogging at WWK By Marilyn Levinson



I'm delighted to be here, blogging every other week about writing, publishing and various and sundry topics. It's been some time since I've been part of a group blog—or even posting on my own blog—and I thought it was time I started doing so again. There are so many wonderful writers here on WWK. I know many of you already—in fact, a few are dear friends—and I hope to get to know everyone who's a part of this wonderful and friendly group.

I've been writing fiction for many, many years. I started out writing middle grade and YA books for kids. My debut novel, AND DON'T BRING JEREMY, was published by Holt in 1985 or '86. I suppose today it would be classified as an early YA. It got a great write up in Publisher's Weekly, was a nominee for six state awards, and I thought I'd arrived as a working author.

Not so. Four more juvenile novels were published over the years. Yes, RUFUS AND MAGIC RUN AMOK was A "Children's Choice," and  NO BOYS ALLOWED stayed in print for over twenty years, but sales of new titles were far and few between. So I decided to try my hand at writing romantic suspense and mysteries.

I sold a romantic suspense and some mysteries to small e-presses as well as a few more juvenile novels. I had what felt like more than my share of bad luck along the way: small presses closing as my book was about to be published; not getting paid royalties owed to me. But I had some good luck, too, part of which I attribute to networking and connecting with other writers and people in the field.  I'm mentioning the best one yet so unpublished writers can take heart and see that networking sometimes works in mysterious ways.

Someone I knew told me that an agent was interested In her book. I asked who that was and she said it was Dawn Dowdle. Now I was on Facebook with Dawn. Months earlier, an agent very "big" in the cozy field had turned down a cozy proposal I'd sent her. Yes, she nearly had taken it but she didn't. And so, figuring that was the last word on the subject, I never sent it out again. But I decided to send it to Dawn. Miracle of miracles, she liked it! Took it on, though I'd only written three chapters. (I promised to finish the book in a few months.)

I've had a few agents, but never anyone like Dawn!  When my manuscript was done and she'd edited in her careful way, she sent it out. Shortly after, Crooked Lane Books took my Haunted Library mystery series. I was asked to come up with a pseudonym—something I'd wanted since I was in elementary school—and my book was soon published.

I was totally amazed by the wonderful acclaim that DEATH OVERDUE received! I found myself laughing at each favorable notice, every terrific review. Was this really happening after all these years? Who knew that creating a librarian in charge of programs and events as a sleuth would be so popular? And having DEATH OVERDUE selected as an Agatha nominee for Best Contemporary Novel last year was indeed an unexpected honor.

All this took place over a span of many years. The thing that amazes me is that I persevered. I kept on writing through rejections and near misses and simple bad luck. Like many other writers, I've had my personal battles—the death of a spouse, fighting stage four lymphoma--but I continued to write. Not because I'm heroic or brilliant, but because I chose to. I think that those of us who publish books have all killed our share of dragons, our disappointments to get past. And those who want to be published must continue to do the same.

12 comments:

Margaret S. Hamilton said...

Welcome!

Marilyn Levinson said...

Thank you, Margaret. I'm delighted to be part of WWK.

Grace Topping said...

Very happy to have you join us Marilyn. I, too, think Dawn Dowdle is a terrific agent. Thank you for recommending her. I'm looking forward to seeing you at Malice.

Vicki Batman, sassy writer of sexy and funny fiction, blogger at Handbags, Books...Whatever said...

So wonderful to read about your writing journey!

KM Rockwood said...

Welcome to Writers Who Kill. And thank you for sharing your journey as a published author.

Marilyn Levinson said...

Grace
I'm so happy it worked out so well and your first book will soon be launched.
I'm looking forward to spending time together as always at Malice!!!

KM,
Thank you! I'm glad to be here. Sharing my trials and tribulations might inspire an aspiring writer not to give up because of difficulties he or she encountered.

Patricia Gligor's Writers Forum said...

What an inspirational post, Marilyn! I often joke that "Perseverance" should be my middle name because I consider it one of the most important qualities a writer can have.
As you said, most of us have had our share of ups and downs through the years but, if writing is part of us, we have to soldier on. I'm so glad you did because I love your books!

Marilyn Levinson said...

Pat,
Thanks for stopping by. I love that you love my books. It has special meaning to me when a fellow author loves what I write. It inspires me to keep on writing. Sometimes we only pay attention to negative comments. But that is another topic for another day.

Marja said...

Excellent post, Marilyn. I remember Dawn Dowdle from a long time ago, and I'm excited to hear she's done so well for you. And you're right, perseverance is high on the list of things an author has to have. Love your books and I look for more.

Shari Randall said...

Welcome, Marilyn! Thank you for sharing your story of perseverance - an invaluable element for every writer's tool kit. I'm so glad you persevered and have had such success with your series.

Marilyn Levinson said...

Hi Marja,
Thanks for stopping by. Dawn is a wonderful agent, one of the major pieces of good fortune I've enjoyed a writer.

Thank you, Shari! Interesting that perserverance turns out to be such an important ingredient in an author's career.

Gloria Alden said...

Welcome, Marilyn. So glad you're taking every other Thursday since I've been running out of ideas for blogs. I enjoyed reading this blog and getting to know you better. It seems you and I share some of the early times starting to write and get published although I publish my own books. We've also had some sad times in our life - yours losing your husband and me losing my oldest son when he was 17 years old to cancer. As for writing I'm now on the tenth book in my series and have a following of readers who are trying to get me to hurry up and finish the book. I'll have to order some of your books and read them, too, since I'm an avid reader.