A Blog Tour Welcome to Jean Henry Mead
April 16, 2012
Jean, glad to visit with you again. I’ve so enjoyed our previous chats, and it’s a real pleasure to host you as the first author on our new tour. What fun, and welcome to the Mojave!
Jean Henry Mead is a national award-winning photojournalist as well as a mystery-suspense novelist. She writes the Logan and Cafferty mystery suspense series featuring two 60-year old feisty amateur women sleuths in A Village Shattered, Diary of Murder and Murder on the Interstate. Her children’s mysteries consist of Mystery of Spider Mountain and Ghost of Crimson Dawn.
Challenges — I’ve been fortunate to have published every book I’ve written, but I had the advantage of beginning my writing career as a news reporter, a job I was hired to do while serving as editor-in-chief of my college newspaper in California. I worked 35 hours a week while taking 15 credit hours each semester. So it was a do-or-die situation because I was the divorced mother of four young daughters. I learned to sit down and write, no matter how I was feeling or whether I had to take my preschool youngest daughter to classes with me. (She now teaches advanced middle school students.)
With 17 published books, I’ve reached my writing goals. I no longer long for a bestseller and I’m satisfied with how my career has evolved. I’ve had ten publishers over the years, I’ve published other writers’ books with my small press, Medallion Books, and as of last fall I now publish my own. I still have a book, Mysterious Writers, with Poisoned Pen Press, which has sold well and I recently published another book of interviews, The Mystery Writers, featuring Sue Grafton, Lawrence Block and a host of other bestselling and award-winning writers as well those still struggling to reach their own their goals.
On your writing horizon— I’m completing a western historical mystery novel that I began researching more than 20 years ago. No Escape: The Sweetwater Tragedy is based on the true story of young couple, Ellen and James Averell, who were hanged by Wyoming cattlemen because they wanted their homestead land. I read about them while I spent two years at a microfilm machine researching a nonfiction centennial history. I vowed then that I would write their story, but everyone believed the lies that cattlemen told about Ellen, that she took calves from cowboys for her “favors.” Even her own family members were convinced and I got into an argument with her great-nephew in his feed store when he called her a prostitute. I was working full-time on other books so my research was hit-and-miss until George Hufsmith published a book about the Averells, which he had spent 20 years constantly researching. (Bless you, George.) Due to his exhaustive research, I’m now able to accurately write my historical mystery.
Also, besides the contemporary novels in my Logan &Cafferty mystery-suspense series, I write the Hamilton Kids’ mysteries as well as nonfiction books, so I have a lot of writing to do this year.
The most pleasure and/or satisfaction–Writing brings me a great deal of pleasure, and aside from when I’m in the zone writing novels, my most pleasure comes from featuring other people in my interview books; particularly writers. My fifth and most recent interview book, The Mystery
Writers, is a great collection of interviews and writing advice. I can say that because I’m only the editor. The interviews originated at my Mysterious Writers blog site and I didn’t want them to go to waste, so I incorporated them into another book, this time in print as well as Kindle and Nook editions.
Thank you for your invitation to appear here, Madeline. I’ve enjoyed our visit here in the Mojave Desert.
Jean, loved visiting, and thanks for such wonderful comments!
Buster will also be selecting winners of three of my latest at the end of our tour.