Mahrie G. Reid – Mystery Author from Calgary

Mahrie G. Reid who is known for writing mysteries originally comes from Nova Scotia, but now lives north of Calgary where she is active in Alberta's writing community. Mahrie is a member of Alberta Romance Writers' Association and a graduate of Calgary's Citizen's Police Academy and Private Investigation 101.

Her published work includes short stories, poems, trade articles, technical and research papers and newspaper features. Now, she prefers to write what she loves and treats everything else as a learning opportunity. The first two books in the Caleb's Cover Mystery Series were published in 2014. (Came Home Dead and Came Home to a Killing) and the third came out in July, 2016 (Came Home Too Late). Book 4, Came Home From the Grave is scheduled for release in 2017.

Welcome Mahrie G. Reid, tell us a bit about yourself. FYI I'm a PK, MOT-NOT AND GOT among other things. Current message users will know the FYI. The rest translates to: Preacher's Kid, Mother-of-Twins-Never on Time and Grandmother of Twins. Currently settled into writing fiction, I've done many things to get to this point. (42 jobs in 19 industries – some of them 2 at a time and enough designations to fill a Christmas Sock.) All of it is fuel for stories. Additionally, I love learning and sharing what I learn both in my blog and at writers' groups and conferences.

Living in Didsbury gives me a semi-rural setting but with easy access to the cities of Calgary and Red Deer. A husband that cooks, vacuums and shops leaves me time to write. And the cat, Kotah, keeps me moving with occasional nips on the butt.

What started you to pursue your writing career?

Few people believe it now, but I was a shy and reclusive child. Stories carried me beyond my boundaries. I learned early that stories can be magical, educational, supportive and restorative. Sounds lofty, but it's just I love to read good stories and always thought that creating stories for others would be the best job ever. My first book was at Age 9 or so – Pam and Penny and the Mystery on Tancook Island. Life intervened often, but I always came back to writing and now I'm able to pursue it full time.

You primarily write mysteries. With quite the writing background, do you like writing other genres as well? I started writing in romance and still enjoy a good relationship story. However, mystery kept creeping in and my mentor, Judith Duncan, encouraged that. I do plan to branch into a paranormal/mystery series in the near future. Additionally, I recently uncovered a complete outline for a middle grade, succor mystery "under the bed." I may finish it in the future. Other than that, I read other genres but don't think I'll write in them.

Are there any genres you don't like writing?

Since I'm into stories with puzzles for fun and relaxation, any of the vampire, noir, or stolen children stories would not work for me. Life is too short to write depressing stories.

Tell us about your latest work.

Book 4 in the Caleb Cove Mystery Series is in progress. It's lurching along primarily because of recent time out for knee surgery. (My grandsons think I have bionic knees!) Working in a small village, you can only have so many murders or you may run out of characters. This one slips back in time to old deaths, bodies found and a path through an almost forgotten cold case. It is Natalie Parker's book. She appears as a secondary character in all of the first three. Oh, and the title: Came Home From the Grave.

What's been the biggest challenge in your writing career to date?

I can be my own worst enemy, easily distracted or stuck because I sweat over one detail that doesn't really need sweating over. Most recently it's the balance between writing and promo. It does not matter how you have your books published, Indie or Traditional, you are expected to maintain a digital presence, a brand and an author platform. I end up worrying about both and then neither gets enough attention.

What do you have in the works for 2017?

2017 will see the publication of Came Home From the Grave. Additionally, I have signed with a publisher to write an historical book set in Nova Scotia (Same place as the Caleb Cove books.) It will be part of the 150th anniversary of Canada, is supported by funding and has a thirteen book series, Canadian Historical Brides, one for each province and territory. I'm doing research for that one – and need to have it ready for the editor and the historical fact-checkers by January 2018. Current publication date is April 2018.

The first of the thirteen books will launch Dec 31, 2016 – Brides of Banff Springs by Victoria Chatham. Anyone interested can follow along on that website: http://bookswelove.net/canadian-historical-brides/

Winner 2015 Golden Crown Literary Society Debut Author

Finalist 2015 Golden Crown Literary Society Mystery Thriller

Finalist 2014 Rainbow Awards Mystery Thriller

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