Marilyn Meredith is the author of nearly thirty published novels, including the award winning Deputy Tempe Crabtree mystery series, the latest Invisible Path from Mundania Press. Under the name of F. M. Meredith she writes the Rocky Bluff P.D. crime series, An Axe to Grind is the latest from Oak Tree Press.
She is a member of EPIC, Four chapters of Sisters in Crime, including the Internet chapter, Mystery Writers of America, and she's on the board of the Public Safety Writers of America. Visit her at her website or her blog .
And now, heeeeere's Marilyn!
When I asked Jackie if she had anything in particular she wanted me to write about for her blog she gave me a couple of suggestions. I’m going to respond to two of them.
She asked, “I'm always fascinated by how you manage to fit so many obligations into your life. How do you keep the balance? Do you think that after a certain age a person just stops fretting about everything? Or priorities change?”
I’ve always been one who liked to accomplish things and earlier in my life I was far busier than I am now. I raised five kids and didn’t have a dryer until my last child was born and my grandfather felt sorry for me and gave me the money to buy one. Before that time I washed every day and hung clothes out on the line. Back then, hubby was in the Navy and money was scarce. Despite that, I had a Camp Fire Girl group, edited the PTA newsletter for years, and served as PTA President for four years in a row. When my youngest started kindergarten, I went to work part time as a pre-school teacher and started college. Believe it or not, I also wrote during this time period.
Life changed. Most of my kids grew up and married and we moved to the foothill town where we live now. We bought and took over a residential facility for developmentally disabled women. That meant more washing and cooking, plus a lot of paper work, but I wrote every weekday morning the ladies were off at their day programs. As time went on, I organized and taught mandated continuing education classes for other administrators of licensed facilities. After twenty-three years, hubby and I assisted the women in finding new homes (I wanted them to be in good places) and we retired.
Right now, I have the most time for writing and promoting I’ve ever had in my life. I try to write in the mornings, my brain works best then, though I must admit I’m compelled to read my e-mail first. Because I blog every day (love the fact that I can post ahead of time) I try to post on Facebook first thing and I often use Ping.fm to get the word out to Twitter and other places. My son and his wife (who live next door) help with housework and sometimes one or the other will take a turn at cooking.
Jackie also asked, “Your Facebook posts often include what you're having for dinner. To show us another side to Marilyn, do you have a favorite recipe you'd like to share after teasing us with so many delicious sounding meals? I'll admit that I'm a recipe junkie, and I always go to the mystery sites that have recipes!”
I really like to cook. I’ve always cooked for so many people that I have no idea how to cook for only two—so I don’t. My son and his wife almost always eat over here as does the grown grandson who is living with us now.
One of my favorite recipes is Beef Stroganoff which I learned how to do from a Russian who was serving in the U.S. Air Force. His daughter was in my Camp Fire Group and he had our whole family over for dinner one evening and I watched him cook. I have to warn you, I don’t use amounts.
When we were really poor, I used the cheapest cut of round steak I could afford and sliced it thin and cooked it slowly for a long while. Now I can buy a better cut of beef, but again, I slice it in thin strips and brown it along with chopped onions. I add a dollop of Worcestershire sauce and a can of tomato soup and ½ can of water. (When I’m cooking for a large group, I add a second can of tomato soup and a whole can of water.) Cook long enough for the meat to be tender. This is when I add sliced fresh mushrooms. I love mushrooms so I put in a lot. This is when I add the sour cream, a pint if you’ve used only one can of tomato soup, more if two. Stir it all together and serve over cooked noodles. You can serve over rice too, but I prefer the noodles.
I have gotten a bit tired of being the one to cook Thanksgiving dinner though, and this year we’re going to my youngest daughter’s for the holiday. She’s a great cook.
Thank you, Marilyn. Beef Stroganoff is one of my favorites, so I'm really pleased with your sample recipe!
While Tempe’s son, Blair is home from Christmas break, he and his roommate from college do a bit of snooping to find out about the para-military group who’ve been seen driving through town. When a young popular Indian is found dead near the recovery center on the reservation, Tempe is called in to help with the investigation. Another Native American but a newcomer to the rez, Jesus Running Bear, is the only suspect. A hidden pregnancy, a quest to find the Hairy Man, and a visit to the pseudo soldiers’ compound put Jesus and Tempe in jeopardy.
Invisible Path can be purchased as a trade paperback or e-book from http://www.mundania.com or any of the usual online bookstores. And here is a synopsis just to wet your apetite!