Today, I’d like to introduce my special guest, Marlene Mesot. Due to technical difficulties, I was unable to conduct a podcast interview, so I gave her the option to be a guest on my blog instead. Before we get started, Let me give Marlene a little introduction.
Marlene Mesot was born an only child, grandchild, and niece from Manchester, New Hampshire. She and her deceased husband, Albert, have two sons, two grandchildren, and English mastiff dogs.
She shares her heroine’s disabilities of legal blindness and hearing aids use due to nerve damage at premature birth. She has loved writing since early childhood.
Marlene holds a bachelor of education degree from Keene State in Keene, New Hampshire, and a master’s in Library and Information Studies from U-NC Greensboro, North Carolina.
Ann: Please tell us a little about yourself.
Marlene: I am from Manchester, New Hampshire originally but now live in Virginia. I went to public school, and sight saving class for the first eight years. In high school I was on the honor roll consecutively all four years. It wasn’t because I was smart. I was good at memorizing. I met my husband the year I graduated from college and we have two sons. My husband was a breeder of English mastiff dogs and we’ve had a lot of them over the years, two currently even though my husband passed in 2017.
Ann: When did you decide that you wanted to become a writer, and what was your source of inspiration?
Marlene: I have been writing stories since about age six. I love reading, and writing has always come easy to me as a hobby. My grandfather taught me to sound out words before kindergarten and he taught me my colors. When I was about twelve, my uncle bought me a portable tape recorder. I used to make up plays, and my grandparents, my mother and I would record the short plays I wrote. Writing became a passion. During my teen years I wrote romances during the summers, even though I had zero experience in that area. I was an English major in college.
Ann: What tips and tricks did you learn throughout your writing journey? How have these little gems of advice helped you improve your writing or enhance your writing career?
Marlene: Put a little of yourself into the writing. No one else will know, but it makes the writing more real and helps your ability to make a better story. I think you asked if I was a plotter or a pantser. Definitely a pantser for the first few books. I’d get excited about a great idea and take off with it only to stumble in the middle. Which is where I am with the third novel in the 4 Elements of Mystery series, titled Whirlwind of Fear. I got to the middle of The Purging Fire and didn’t know how to continue for a couple of weeks. I knew where I was going, the ending, but not how to get there. Finally a transition came to me and the rest flowed better.
Ann: Tell us a little about your most recently published book(s).
Marlene: The Purging Fire is the first book in the 4 Elements of Mystery series. My heroine shares my disabilities, which made it easy and comfortable to write. How’s that for putting yourself in the book? She seems to be unavoidably present wherever danger lurks and she knows her romantic interest, the hero, has a secret he won’t share. The second book, titled The Snowball Effect, is written but not published yet. I have just republished a separate novel titled The Cat Stalker’s Sonnets. Both published books are in print and eBook formats.
Ann: Which is harder, writing or editing? Why?
Marlene: Editing is definitely harder. When writing I don’t have to look at the keys. I can just go with the flow of the ideas and the story as it progresses. With editing you have to concentrate on the specific, fine details and really look at what you are doing.
Ann: Do you have any current or upcoming projects you’d like to share with us?
Marlene: Yes, I’m working on the third novel in the series titled Whirlwind of Fear. In it a deaf-blind high school student in the heroine’s special education class is kidnapped. There are other things also going on, but the girl’s classmates try to enlist the heroine, and ultimately the hero, to help them find the missing girl.
Ann: What advice do you have for aspiring authors and new writers?
Marlene: Believe in yourself and keep writing—no matter what.
Ann: If you could have a conversation with, or be educated by anyone, past or present, who would it be and why?
Marlene: I would love to train under Dean Koontz. He uses many wonderful techniques and important truths in his writing. In his novel Breathless he has seemingly separate stories which are all connected together by the time the book ends. Another skilled author is Karen Ball. The middle book in her Family Honor series titled Kaleidoscope Eyes is another of my most favorite reads. One of her techniques is to use a scene from the book in the prologue, but from a different point of view, and with a different slant, to build the anticipation.
Ann: If my readers are meeting you for the first time and want to follow you and learn about your work, where can they find you online?
Marlene: My website is. marlsmenagerie.com My books are available through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple and Christianbook.com. You can find me on Goodreads at:
You can also watch the book trailer at:
and visit my Amazon author page:
Ann: Do you have a favorite Bible verse you’d like to leave us with?
Marlene: Yes. I love this question. Psalms 37:4. “Delight yourself in the Lord for the desires of your heart.” I have a Bible verse to represent each novel prior to the books beginning. In The Purging Fire it’s II Corinthians 12:10. “Therefore I am well content with weakness, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake, for when I am weak then I am strong.”
Marlene: Thank you so much, Ann, for the privilege of sharing with you and your fans. It’s a pleasure to meet a fellow mystery writer who also loves the Lord.
Ann: It was a pleasure having you on my blog. I hope readers will enjoy this interview as much as you and I have enjoyed putting it together.