Lloyd Meeker

Guest Post: Blood & Dirt by Lloyd A. Meeker

Author's Spotlight

A Newbie’s Adventures in Writing a Series Character – Lloyd A. Meeker

With the release of Blood and Dirt in August, I entered the ranks of authors who write a series. That’s not something I anticipated when I wrote Enigma, the first Russ Morgan mystery, in 2012. For the first year after it came out I thought of it as a one-off short novella—I certainly didn’t anticipate readers’ interest in Russ as a character. Sometimes the author is the last to know what’s going on.

I love series characters, though. I cut my series mystery-reading teeth on Rex Stout, Agatha Christie and Dorothy L. Sayers, just as I’d cut my series fantasy-reading teeth on Tolkien, LeGuin and Zelazny. I happily fell in love with the idea of a story arc lasting longer than a single book—that’s the stuff of epics!

Whatever comes of Russ Morgan’s series of mysteries, however, I’m pretty sure it won’t be epic. No great battles between good and evil, no saga stretching across generations, just Russ Morgan, a decent guy in his fifties, still working on his relationship to the troubled world he lives in. He’s an interesting character to me, for reasons that may border on the narcissistic.

Like every other new-ish author, I received the inevitable advice to write what I know. So for Russ I drew heavily on my own experience, then added some embellishments. Russ is psychically sensitive, and so am I. I don’t see auras like Russ, but I sure feel them when I’m standing next to someone. Being in a crowd takes a lot of energy for me, although Russ is tougher than I am and manages better.

Russ and I both are grateful for long-term sobriety. That’s a truly spectacular thing, no need for any embellishment there. Colorado is my home state, and Russ’, too. I lived in Denver for many years, and it was the natural place to use as Russ’ home base. When Colorado legalized marijuana cultivation, that gave me a natural opening to write Blood and Dirt.

Mostly, though, Russ and I share an introspective, philosophical approach to life. Russ likes to think about things. He wonders about people, their motivation, their wounds and hopes. He ponders moral issues without pre-emptive certainty. He’s fascinated by power differential and the interplay of personalities. He thinks about the human footprint on the natural world. And ultimately, he seeks to live a spiritually authentic life outside the structures of religion. An AA meeting is as close as he cares to come to collective spiritual practice.

So what am I trying to do in the stories Russ has to tell? First and foremost, I want to tell intriguing, satisfying mysteries. Beyond that, I don’t know how to say it succinctly, but I want to write the stories of a deeply human, compassionate, basically gentle man who engages the world with unflinching honesty and a minimum of entitlement.

I want Russ to grow, engage, love, grieve, celebrate—and best of all, solve mysteries that readers enjoy. I know I’ll grow as a writer as I work to deliver them.

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BloodDirt_cvr-Full SizeBlurb: Family squabbles can be murder. Psychic PI Russ Morgan investigates a vandalized marijuana grow in Mesa County Colorado, landing in the middle of a ferocious family feud that’s escalating in a hurry. Five siblings fight over the family ranch as it staggers on the brink of bankruptcy, marijuana its only salvation. Not everyone agrees, but only one of them is willing to kill to make a point. Russ also has a personal puzzle to solve as he questions his deepening relationship with Colin Stewart, a man half his age. His rational mind says being with Colin is the fast track to heartbreak, but it feels grounding, sane, and good. Now, that’s really dangerous…

Buy Links: Amazon || Wilde City Press

Author Links: Website || Twitter || Amazon Author Page

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A Sneak Peek At The Coming Week

Here’s a Sneak Peek at the Coming Week

Sneak Peek

Cheers, everyone, and many thanks to you for popping in to see who and what we have coming up for you in the next six days. We have a great lineup of authors set to visit with us this week, so I hope you’ll come back to spend some time with us.

Here’s what’s on tap!

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Monday – Kicking off the week, we welcome author Z. Allora, with a chat about the re-release of book one in her Club Zombies series, Zombies Ahead

We’ll also have author Chris McHart joining us today, on the Alex’s Surprise/Saving Alex blog Tour

Tuesday – Today we’ll be bringing author Katey Hawthorne your way, on the tour for her new book Back to the Sky

Wednesday – We kick off the day today with author Silvia Violet, our next guest on the Countdown to GayRomLit blog tour

Author Lloyd A. Meeker will also be stopping in to talk to you a bit about his new novel from Wilde City Press, Blood & Dirt

ThursdaySkylar M. Cates joins us today on the tour for her new book Lovers, Losers, and You

FridayCJane Elliott drops in today to tell us a bit about her new novel Sex, Love, and Videogames

We’ll also have K.A. Mitchell popping in with an interview for her new novel Put a Ring on It

Saturday – Finally, to close out our week, we’ll have Max Vos with us on the tour for his new audiobook My Hero

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And that does it for the week ahead. Until next time, happy reading!

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5 Stars, Lloyd Meeker, Mystery/Suspense/Action Thriller, Reviewed by Maryann, Wilde City Press

Double-Header Review: Enigma and Blood & Dirt by Lloyd A. Meeker

Lloyd A. Meeker

Titles: Enigma and Blood and Dirt

Author: Lloyd A. Meeker

Publisher: Wilde City Press

Pages/Word Count: 54 and 148 Pages

At a Glance: I have definitely become a fan of Lloyd A. Meeker and the Russ Morgan Mystery series.

Reviewed By: Maryann

Blurbs: Enigma: Who’s blackmailing the high-profile televangelist whose son was famously cured of his homosexuality fifteen years ago? Now in 2009, that ought to be ancient history.

It seems there’s no secret to protect, no crime, not even a clear demand for money—just four threatening letters using old Enigma songs from the 90′s. But they’ve got Reverend Howard Richardson spooked.

Proudly fifty and unhappily single, gay PI Russ Morgan has made peace with being a psychic empath, and he’s managed to build a decent life since getting sober. As he uncovers obscene secrets shrouded in seeming righteousness he might have to make peace with a sword of justice that cuts the innocent as deeply as the guilty.

Blood & Dirt: Family squabbles can be murder. Psychic PI Russ Morgan investigates a vandalized marijuana grow in Mesa County Colorado, landing in the middle of a ferocious family feud that’s escalating in a hurry. Five siblings fight over the family ranch as it staggers on the brink of bankruptcy, marijuana its only salvation. Not everyone agrees, but only one of them is willing to kill to make a point. Russ also has a personal puzzle to solve as he questions his deepening relationship with Colin Stewart, a man half his age. His rational mind says being with Colin is the fast track to heartbreak, but it feels grounding, sane, and good. Now, that’s really dangerous…

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Review: Enigma is a story that introduces us to P.I. Rhys “Russ” Morgan, who has the ability to read auras. He’s fought the hard fight of alcoholism, and he still fights loneliness and guilt. Russ is plain and simple—he wants facts upfront, access to everyone connected to a case, and the truth. He has no problem walking away from a case if the clients don’t cooperate, and when we meet Russ, he’s being harangued by a nasty little lawyer by the name of Kommen.

Along with Russ, we meet Colin Stewart, assistant to Kommen. Colin puts a spark in Russ, but even though Colin occasionally flirts with Russ whenever he shows up at Kommen’s office, Russ’s past still weighs heavy on his mind, and he knows he could never get involved with Colin.

The focus of the blackmail mystery is James Richardson. At the age of seventeen in 1993, he was sent into “reparative therapy” by Reverend Richardson for being homosexual. This is where Mr. Meeker takes James Richardson’s story and wraps it around music from Cross of Changes by Enigma.

Enigma is so much more than a case of blackmail, it’s a mystery melded with the mystical. If there is any chance you can listen to Enigma’s music, do so because the lyrics will define James Richardson’s character.

I liked what Mr. Meeker did with Russ Morgan’s character. He doesn’t flaunt, overuse or abuse Russ’s abilities. In fact, Russ could solve a case with just his investigative skills. Mr. Meeker had me fascinated with Enigma from the beginning to end. Excellent story and excellent music!!

After reading Blood & Dirt I have definitely become a fan of Lloyd A. Meeker and the Russ Morgan Mystery series. This is the second installment, so if you have not read Enigma, it’s a must read before Blood & Dirt. Mr. Meeker takes us on another roller coaster ride, with so many clashing personalities for Russ to examine before he can solve the case.

Russ Morgan finds himself taking on another dysfunctional family case. He’s being hired by Evan Landry to investigate an incident at the Ellis Ranch, where his sister Sarah’s medical marijuana grow has been destroyed. At the Ellis Ranch we meet Stanford Sr. and his adult children Stanford Jr., Marianne, Billy, Evan and Sarah. Needless to say a few of them are vindictive and greedy. This is more than just sibling rivalry. In fact, I wanted to strangle a couple of them myself! This is also about a father’s regret and his not knowing if he made the right decision. Poor Russ, he’s caught up in this chaotic mess, and then a case of destruction of property turns into murder.

That brings Deputy Sheriff Heath Baker into the story. Even though he flirts with Russ, he’s sort of demeaning and cocky, and doesn’t want Russ’s help. Russ does use some of his aura ability to prove a point with Heath. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to dislike Heath or not, but there’s something about him. Maybe he will get his own story.

Before Russ tackles his new case, we find that he’s been sporadically dating Colin Stewart, a paralegal he met during the blackmail case in Enigma. Colin becomes so much more in this story. He’s been chipping away to become a part of Russ’s life, but Russ still fights with the idea of Colin being too young, and with the fear of getting hurt. Colin is very smart, not only good at his job but smart about life too. He’s an “old soul,” and his character is mature beyond his years, which scares Russ. Colin is so careful with Russ’s feelings, but he brings a little mischief too. The story of the two men in Ireland that Colin shares with Russ was a touching moment and sends an important message.

The romance between Russ and Colin is written with passion, and Mr. Meeker leaves us to use our imaginations in the love that Russ and Colin share. Colin brings a special warmth to the story, and I was glad to see him grow to an important character. I still can’t say enough about Russ’s character. Mr. Meeker still doesn’t overuse Russ’s abilities, and I like how Russ was surprised, just as I was, when things weren’t what he expected.

This story also contains details on the process of starting a medical marijuana grow. Check out the Acknowledgements. It contains information on how much research the author put into this subject.

TNA_Signature_Maryann

 

 

 

You can buy Enigma and Blood & Dirt here:

Wilde City Press

Wilde City Press

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4.5 Stars, Drama, Dreamspinner Press, Lloyd Meeker, Paranormal Romance, Reviewed by Sammy

The Companion by Lloyd A. Meeker takes us on a beautiful journey of self-discovery and love.

“Love yourself. Forgive yourself. Be true to yourself. How you treat yourself sets the standard for how others will treat you.” – Steve Maraboli


Title: The Companion

Author: Lloyd A. Meeker

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Pages/Word Count: 220 Pages

Rating: 4.5 Stars

Blurb: Shepherd Bucknam hasn’t had a lover in more than a decade and doesn’t need one.
As a Daka, he coaches men in the sacred art and mystery of sexual ecstasy all the time, and he loves his work. It’s his calling. In fact, he’s perfectly content—except for the terrors of his recurring nightmare and the ominous blood-red birthmarks on his neck. He’s convinced that together they foretell his early and violent death. Continue reading

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Dreamspinner Press, Lloyd Meeker

A Guest Post and Giveaway: “The Companion” by Lloyd A. Meeker

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I’m often asked why I include mystical elements in my writing. I usually give a one or two sentence answer about how the visible and invisible worlds interact, or talk about meeting people we feel we’ve already known for a long time.

The short answer is that my life is full of experiences that don’t fit in the “rational explanation/reproducible results” box. But today I want to share a true-life story of my own by way of longer explanation. Continue reading

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