A Decade of Books

News Flash: Linda Ortiz is our lucky winner! Linda, please check your email, and congratulations.

Edith/Maddie, writing from north of Boston and feeling blessed.

I’m so happy to share with you my first decade of being a published mystery author! I have a special giveaway to offer, so please read to the end.

Edith, Tace, and Maddie, with all of our books (except A Tine to Live a Tine to Die – novel #2 – which is hiding on the top left)

Yes, Speaking of Mystery, my first novel, came out exactly ten years ago.

Speaking of Murder released under a pen name from a small press, Barking Rain, which has since closed. With the help of Beyond the Page Publishing, it’s out again with fresh edits, a fabulous new cover, and my own name.

It was such a huge thrill to hold my very first launch party in September, 2012, at an indy bookstore in the next town. The Book Rack had about ten chairs set up. From the responses I’d had to my invitation, I told the manager, “You might want to set up more chairs.” More than sixty people from many walks of my life – Quakers, work friends, neighbors, my critique group, and fellow crime writers, including Wickeds Julie and Barb before we were even blogmates – showed up to support me!

Pic by friend and marketing guru, Jeanne Wallace

When the bookstore ran out of books, Hugh brought in the box I’d stashed in the car, just in case. (Pro tip to authors: always keep a box of books in the car.)

Not sure why the photo is fuzzy, maybe because I was so happy!

And now, ten years later, Murder in a Cape Cottage is my twenty-eighth published novel, and it releases next week! This feels like a huge milestone, even though more books are in production and under contract, for a total of six series (three now ended). In addition, I’ve had two novellas release in collections, plus about twenty short stories. Of course I had to bake a cake to celebrate.

Find the cake and frosting recipe on MysteryLoversKitchen.com this Friday!

I have so very many people to thank, tops among them my beloved Wickeds. Nobody could wish for a better support group than Barb, Jessie, Julie, Liz, and Sherry.

Writers farther along the path than me boosted me as I was starting. Bless you, Susan Oleksiw, Kate Flora, Hallie Ephron, Lucy Burdette, and Hank Phillippi Ryan, as well as the late Sheila Connolly.

Sisters in Crime and the New England chapter (note lots of overlap with previously mentioned ladies) made my path to publication possible, with workshops, networking, the New England Crime Bake conference, along with the online Guppies chapter. For many years I read scenes to the Monday Night Writers Group and have to thank those ladies (plus Doug) for their valuable feedback.

Gratitude also to my agent, John Talbot, for taking a chance on me early on, and to my several publisher/editors: Sheri Gormley, John Scognamiglio, Terri Bischoff, Amy Glaser, and Bill Harris. To my sisters, my sons, my close friends, my Quaker community, my partner Hugh – I couldn’t do it without you.

My biggest thanks go to all the lovely fans who keep reading my books, buying them, recommending them, requesting them from the library, and passing them along to others. And to the wonderful book bloggers and reviewers in our community – Dru Ann Love, Mark Baker, Jay Roberts, Lesa Holstine, Kristopher Zgorski, and many others – who help get the word out to readers.

To celebrate, I put together a special giveaway. Apparently tin is the metal for the tenth anniversary, but it was kind of hard to find. Instead I’m adding a pretty metal starfish to a package with an author apron, Kensington coasters, recipe cards, a Wicked Authors bag, and signed copies of the new book and the novella collection!

Readers: Thanks so much for joining me. What ten-year anniversary have you celebrated? Bonus point to anyone who has read all 28 books! I’ll send one lucky commenter the special prize.

127 Thoughts

  1. Congratulations on your 10th anniversary. I have never celebrated a 10th anniversary. I have read a couple of you books, but all 28 are on my TBR list.

  2. Congratulations! I have celebrated my 10th wedding anniversary, so I know how exciting it feels to reach that magic number of 10.

  3. Long time reader here and also a North of Boston resident, I have your newly released/older books on my kindle tbr, I was excited to recently find them show up for purchase under your name. Going to miss the Rose Carroll books but enjoy everything you write. Congrats on #10!

    1. Thank you, Leena! There will be a collection of Rose Carroll short stories out in the spring. Make sure you sign up for my author newsletter over at edithmaxwell.com to get all the news.

  4. Congratulations on this wonderful milestone! And here’s wishing you inspiration and success with many, many more books! I’ve enjoyed every one I’ve read so far. That new cover art for your re-release is truly striking.

    My best 10th anniversary was two years ago when I celebrated 10 years as a freelance development editor and writer. Leaving a high-stress corporate publishing job was the best decision I’d made in a long while. Now I still get to do the creative work I love with talented authors and publishing teams but without all the in-house nonsense.

  5. Congratulations on 10 years!!! I celebrated my 10th Anniversary! Going on 20! Whew! I have read all 28 books! Thank you for so much for the chance!

  6. This is such a wonderful milestone, Edith. Congratulations! As I noted on the SINC Guppies forum, you’ve inspired me in so many ways. You share so much of yourself and your path as a writer with those of us who are just getting started. I appreciate how generous you are with your time and in sharing your experience.

    Reading your post above and seeing the photos brought tears to my eyes. Your story is one I hope to emulate. After spending the past 38 years as a professional health writer, I’m just getting started on my creative writing career (after retiring in June). So, no “10 year milestones” to report here, but stay tuned!

  7. Congratulations! Ten years and all those books…a huge accomplishment! Wishing you a happy celebration and many more books to come.

  8. Happy Anniversary! How great that feelin’! I Have only really started reading cozies this year. Your books are always a priority. I have a hard time finding them sometimes, even at the library. My “problem” is that I really like to start with the first book in a series first. I haveabout 10 or 12 but no firsts. I’ll get them eventually! Again congrats!
    NB: I am making the apple almond cake this morning. Can hardly wait to see how it turns out.

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  9. Can’t think of any recent tenth anniversaries.
    I’ll turn 74 in November, was graduated from high school in 1967 and college in 1971, married in 1971, had my son in 1977, and was widowed in 2007.
    I joined the Religious Society of Friends in 1971 and was Recorder for more than twenty years.
    Have been with Chester Valley Ministers Association for almost forty years.
    Served the local hospital as a chaplain for almost twenty years.
    Attended WC-ALL classes for twelve years, but between COVID and Zoom declined to renew for the current term.
    Still have the same Service Gaage as in the 70s, although there has been some change in the workers. My dentist has passed me to his associate after fifty years, but all of my medical people are shorter term. My rheumatologist stopped coming to the local hospital in th 90s but possibly I’ve been with his associate who is only 40 miles away (rather than his 80) for ten years.

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