Sunday, June 26, 2011



Marilyn Levinson is a former Spanish teacher, and the author of several books for children, and young adults. RUFUS, and MAGIC RUN AMOK was selected by the International Reading Association, and the Children’s Book Council for “Children’s Choices for 2002.” NO BOYS ALLOWED has been in print since 1993.

A MURDERER AMONG US is her first published adult mystery. MURDER A LA CHRISTIE was a finalist in the 2010 Malice Domestic contest. She is a member of The Authors Guild, RWA, The Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, the Guppies, and is president, and co-founder the Long Island chapter of Sisters in Crime. She lives on Long Island with her husband, Bernie and their cat, Sammy.

Welcome Marilyn. Tell us about the book and how you promote it.

My mystery, A MURDERER AMONG US, made its debut on June first, and I’ve never been busier!  Years ago, when I wrote YAs and books for kids, I spoke in schools and libraries.  Even did the occasional book store signing.  But an author’s life these days is something else entirely.

Keeping an updated website is essential.  So is blogging, commenting on fellow writers’ blogs, tweeting on Twitter, and “liking” on Facebook.  I’ve learned to design a business card, I’ve struggled to create a bookmark, attend conferences and conventions, and do all I can to get my book in the public eye.  This is especially important because A MURDERER AMONG US is an ebook and available in print as a POD.

A bit about my novel:  Lydia Krause has moved to Twin Lakes, an upscale retirement community on Long Island, to start a new life.  Her neighbor introduces her to Marshall Weill, the community’s financial advisor, whom Lydia recognizes as the convicted embezzler who drove her sister to suicide.  She exchanges heated words with Weill’s wife. The woman’s found dead the following morning, mowed down by Lydia’s Lexus.  Now Suspect Number One, Lydia investigates.  Amid threats and more deaths, Lydia forges new friendships, helps resolve her grown daughters’ problems, and finds romance.

A MURDERER AMONG US is available at  Click on:
It will soon be available on, Kindle, and

Thank you Marilyn for an informative look at your work. Sounds quite exciting.


THE GHOST SHIP, June 28, 2011

Sunday, June 19, 2011


       With the demands on a published author - and for that matter an unpublished writer looking to get published - to brand and promote oneself, the serious question arises: when do I have time to write?

I can't begin to name all the social and professional networks I belong to that give me a web presence, including writing blogs like this one, but I will list a few. Twitter and Facebook, of course, KindleBoards, Goodreads, Shelfari, LinkedIn, Red Room, Sisters in Crime, Mystery Writers of America; then there are the listservs like DorothyL. I've been on and off DL for ten years. Like me, book people come and go.

I don't know how many readers I've acquired through the listservs and groups like Murder Must Advertise, but I get a lot of good information and I conduct free book drawings from time to time.  It's a way to stay connected with the reading and writing community, not just for sales but to interact with friends I've met online and in person.

So, when do I write?

On weekday afternoons unless on a tight deadline. There are so many things to take care of in the morning - housewifey stuff, returning put-off calls from yesterday, reading and answering emails - that I've designated morning as taking-care-of-business time.

At one o'clock (if I'm not playing golf), I write until five with necessary breaks - for me and Bogey, the demanding standard poodle who adorns my book covers.

 Unless for research, I don't crawl the net or answer the telephone. I research, edit, write. Period.

About golf. I play on Saturday and Sunday - again, unless on a tight deadline. One day during the week, I play and usually I'm finished and back at my desk by one-thirty. Two at the latest. Then I extend my work day until six o'clock.

Writing is a demanding master (aka self-flagellation), but publication is vindication for the blood and toil. Then I have to address an even more demanding master: promotion.

Gerrie Ferris Finger
THE GHOST SHIP  released 2011


Thursday, June 16, 2011

TOP TWENTY WELL-READ CITIES Names America’s Most Well-Read Cities

Is it any wonder that Cambridge, Massachusetts, which Harvard University calls home, topped’s recent listing of the Top 20 Most Well-Read Cities in America?

I lived in Cambridge eons ago. Residents walked along streets reading books, book stores - be they large retail outlets or mom and pop resellits - on nearly every block, citizens in the parks reading magazines or best sellers, riders of MBTA missing their stops while engrossed in Follett or Oates. Add the Kindle and residents are now ordering more books, magazines and newspapers in print and Kindle formats. The survey began Jan. 1, 2011 and was based on cities with more than 100,000 residents. Cambridge residents also ordered the highest number of nonfiction books.

The top 20 list:

1. Cambridge, Massachusetts
2. Alexandria, Virginia
3. Berkeley, California
4. Ann Arbor, Michigan
5. Boulder, Colorado
6. Miami, Florida
7. Salt Lake City, Utah
8. Gainesville, Florida
9. Seattle, Washington
10. Arlington, Virginia
11. Knoxville, Tennessee
12. Orlando, Florida
13. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
14. Washington, D.C.
15. Bellevue, Washington
16. Columbia, South Carolina
17. St. Louis, Missouri
18. Cincinnati, Ohio
19. Portland, Oregon
20. Atlanta, Georgia

Happy to see Atlanta, my adopted home of many decades ago, sneak onto the list. St. Louis, my birth place, came in 17.
Echoing results from Sisters in Crime’s recent Mystery Book Buyer Study, nearly half of the cities on the list are located below the Mason-Dixon line.

The Washington, D.C. area includes three of the top 20 cities – Alexandria, Va. (#2), Arlington, Va. (#10) and Washington itself (#14). Alexandria residents also topped the list of buyers of children’s books.

The sunshine state, Florida, has three cities in the top 20 – Miami (#6), Gainesville (#8) and Orlando (#12).

“We hope book lovers across the country enjoy this fun look at where the most voracious readers reside,” said Mari Malcolm, managing editor of Books at

Submitted by
Gerrie Ferris Finger