Spotlight on Marian Lanouette

I’m happy to welcome Amazon best-selling author Marian Lanouette. Today, Marian shares her inspiring journey and upcoming release, All the Deadly Lies.

Here’s Marian!

I’d like to thank Joanne for hosting me today. She gave me an interesting assignment to post briefly about my writing journey.

When I first started writing, I, like every other author, wanted the New York publisher, and the New York agent. Did I get them after many letters, inquiries, or form letter rejections? I did, but it took me nine years to get there.

I was offered a contract from a small press immediately after completing my second book. Naturally, I was thrilled that someone wanted me and my stories. The publisher and I worked together to put out the Jake Carrington series. But Jake didn’t splash into the large pool like I wanted him to. That was no fault of mine or the publisher’s. I had expected more than they offered and as with any book, it’s up to the author to promote it, and themselves. And more important, to have your next book ready to keep your readers captivated.

After the contracted time period I took my rights back and decided to journey into the ocean of self-pub authors. I met with some success. Jake Carrington and his crew were well received and I was now making a living at something I loved with a passion–Writing.

Along the way I’ve met some great authors like Joanne, and readers alike. I’ve been out and about at readings, libraries, and conferences all while learning the business. It’s been a thrilling expedition and even today I still continue to learn.

So nine years later…I met my NY publisher/editor Michaela Hamilton at Kensington, and agent Doug Grad from the Doug Grad Literary Agency, in the same night. Needless to say I was off the wall when I was offered a four book deal from Michaela for Jake’s series. I think and hope (fingers crossed) that readers of the series will be as excited for Jake and his new journey as I am for him and myself as well as welcoming new readers to the series. We look forward to many years of working together with this team and can’t wait to see what’s around the next corner.


Homicide detective Jake Carrington takes murder personally…

The victim was bludgeoned, stripped, and left for dead. Shanna Wagner deserves justice—and there’s no better cop than Lieutenant Jake Carrington to find her killer. The brutality of the crime reminds Jake of his sister’s murder seventeen years ago, and the remorseless man responsible, now up for parole.

Then another woman is killed—and Jake goes dangerously close to the edge. He’ll have to face his personal demons and focus his formidable skills if he hopes to stop a vicious murderer from striking again—and hold on to his career, and his life . . .

Buy links

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Where to find Marian…

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Goodreads | Amazon


Chatting with My Sisters

I’m visiting two authors from the Sisterhood of Suspense: Marian Lanouette and Claire Gem. We are a group of 15 suspense authors who like to share our love of this genre with readers and writers. Today, I’m chatting about my writing journey and Too Many Women in the Room.

Drop by their blogs and enter the giveaway. You could win a $10 Amazon gift card.

Marian’s blog

Claire’s blog

The Heart of the Story

Welcome to my Second Acts Series!

Today, we have author and fellow Sister of Suspense Marian Lanoutte/Merry Holly sharing a lifelong passion for writing.

Here’s Marian!

marian lanouetteBriefly describe your first act.

I always joked that I didn’t know what I wanted to be when I grew up. My career choices was acting or writing. But my parents made it clear from an early age, they wouldn’t pay for those kinds of degrees. Teaching or accounting was their recommendations. I figured I’d show them and turned down college for a temporary job as an office manager that lasted ten years. My father told me I’d regret the decision, but I was eighteen and headstrong.

In my first act I was busy working with no real goal. Well, my father was right. At thirty I headed back to school and got my Bachelors of Science in Accounting.

What triggered the need for change?

Believe it or not, our office was totally manual at the time. My boss (one of the greatest I ever had) suggested we take classes to learn to use computers. Our trustees mentioned they wanted to computerize the process. Well, my husband and I, and my boss and his wife signed up at a local high school in their adult education program. The course was an introduction to computers and their uses. The four of us arrived for class the first night and discovered it was cancelled for lack of interest.

Disappointed, my husband and I drove straight to the local college and signed up for a basic computer class. I loved it (I could be a professional student discovered) and decided it was time to work on my degree.


My second act was triggered by a health issue. I discovered I had severe blockages in the heart and required by-pass surgery. During the recovery period (six months) I looked through my computer and discovered all the stories I’ve written over the years, I never shared with anyone. To aid in my recovery and keep my mind sharp, I started my first novel.

After surgery the limit for a by-pass patient is eight pounds. In the scheme of life that’s not a lot of weight. Your vacuum weights around ten pounds or more to give you a comparison. My husband to ensure I didn’t lift more brought me a notebook which weighed less than two pounds.

In three months I had my first draft of If I Fail, A Jake Carrington mystery. Since then I haven’t looked back. I now have three complete novels in the series (the last one Mated for Life is in the editing process,) and several published novellas.

Where are you now?

I’m back in my accounting career and continue to write in the evenings. The accounting is a necessary evil, and the writing is a joy. I’m sorry I didn’t follow my dreams and pursue my writing earlier in life. But I’m a firm believer things happen for a reason.

Do you have advice for anyone planning to pursue a second act?

Do your research. I wrote a first draft and sent it out to every agent on the planet. Not knowing the steps to a successful novel. The book, Loss of Power, is still sitting in a drawer. A wonderful story, that I love, which needs a ton of work. If it wasn’t for a nice editor at a big publishing house and her advice, I’d still be banging my head on the wall. She suggested I join a writing group and take some online classes to learn the craft. It was the best advice I got pertaining to my writing. And it made sense. Didn’t I have to take classes to learn accounting.

Any affirmations or quotations you wish to share?

Yes, I love Stephen Kings advice in On Writing. The book is wonderful. This quote is one taken from it.

“If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.” ― Stephen King

Marian’s Books

seasonofthrillsseason of surprises

Buy Links – Season of Thrills

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Kobo | iTunes

Where to find Marian…

Website | Amazon | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

Joanne here!

Marian, thanks for sharing your inspiring journey. If you ever run out of story ideas, consider writing your memoirs.