Writer Wednesday: Meira Pentermann

Meira Color 2012

It’s Writer Wednesday, and we are pleased to announce that author Meira Pentermann will be joining us today! Meira Pentermann, author of “Firefly Beach”, “Nine-Tenths” and children’s book “Sarah and the Magic Mayonnaise Jar,” prefers to write about the everyday person. But she does this with a side of unpredictable by placing these ordinary characters into extraordinary situations.  Pentermann also enjoys spending time with her family and reads as much as she writes! Buy her book “Firefly Beach” here. And it will be available in audible book this November!  Purchase the audible book here. You’ll find my review of the book at the end of this post.

Describe your books/genre to our readers. 

Firefly Beach is a paranormal cozy mystery. A cozy mystery typically features a small town, quirky characters, and an amateur sleuth. The paranormal element in this story is the spooky firefly. I have also written a dystopian science fiction and a children’s chapter book. I cannot seem to stick to one genre 🙂

How and why did you become an author? Do you write full time?

I have been writing since I was twelve, mostly journals and poetry. During my thirties I had several story ideas, but I never got past a couple of chapters. In 2003, I sat down and wrote an entire novel in one month! At least I thought it was a novel. It was barely 50,000 words – not long enough to qualify as a novel – and it was quite dreadful. Thankfully, I had no clue at the time. That first manuscript, which I shelved in 2007, allowed me to believe I could write a full-length novel. Faith in one’s self is a powerful thing.

I also work for my husband’s business, so I am unable to write full time, but I still have the freedom to arrange my schedule when a story is brewing.

What inspires you?

Each novel has its own story, so I’ll focus on Firefly Beach.

Firefly Beach developed in stages before it took off in my brain and wouldn’t leave me alone.  I first envisioned the firefly in 2004 when my husband and I were on a retreat. We participated in a relaxation seminar. The instructor asked us to imagine a very safe and quiet space – a room, a meadow, whatever came to mind. I pictured a small beach secluded by high cliffs. But, honestly, relaxation exercises and I do not do well together. Thoughts run around in my brain in spite of my efforts to quiet them. Shortly after arriving at my special beach, a firefly joined me dancing around the cliff. Then a diary and the idea that it belonged to a long-lost girl.

That concept drifted to the back of my mind while I worked on another manuscript from 2004 through 2007. As soon as I declared that manuscript finished, the firefly returned to me, flooding me with ideas. I could not write them down fast enough. I realized that Beth’s story was far more compelling than the words I labored over for four years. At that moment, the old manuscript found its way to a shelf in the back of my closet, and I passionately dove into Firefly Beach.

Describe a typical day. 

Most of the time I write in my home office, but I actually really enjoy taking a laptop to the library. Also, my family has treated me with several writer’s weekends. I go to a hotel on Friday night and return on Sunday morning. Two of my published books were launched during a writer’s weekend. So I guess I don’t really have a typical day 🙂

What are 3 fun things we should know about you? 

I love dogs and cats, hate ironing, and daydream about spending a summer in Tuscany.

What advice would you give to new authors? 

I could give aspiring authors pages of concrete advice about the mechanics of writing, the world of traditional publishing, and the nuances of self-publishing, but there are thousands of websites and blogs which give excellent advice in more detail than I could do here. So I’ll focus on the one thing I know. You must first believe.

The achievement of any dream begins with the assertion, “I will do this.” Dreams that remain sheltered under words like “I wish” or “I’m not sure” will never see the light of day. I’m not saying a doubt or two won’t rear its ugly head from time to time, but it is important to swat that doubt away as soon as possible. It’s a pesky little gnat, a poisonous distraction.

So my advice is this – Practice belief. Dispel doubt. Write your goals on paper. Post them on the wall. Declare them and never give up!

How can our readers contact you? 

Facebook

Website

Blog

Twitter

Email: meira@meirapentermann.com

Feel free to add anything about yourself, your books, etc. here.

Firefly Beach: When Beth LaMonte rents a cottage on the coast of Maine, she wishes only to withdraw and paint. A mysterious ball of light disturbs her peace and leads her to a secret beach where she finds the diary of a girl who disappeared in 1975. Now Beth is on a mission, not only to bury her own past, but to put to rest the spirit of Firefly Beach.

Nine-Tenths: Leonard Tramer and his family live in Colorado, trapped behind the walls of a totalitarian state. Dedicated to one another and determined to find the free world, they plan an escape which defies the odds and deceives their tyrannical government. Emerging at a time when personal liberties and Internet privacy are slowly eroding, Nine-Tenths offers a window into a dysfunctional society, while celebrating the resiliency of the human spirit and the natural urge to resist oppression.

Sarah and the Magic Mayonnaise Jar: GRADE 3-5. When ten-year-old Sarah Williams obtains magical powers from an unlikely source, she is swept into an adventure involving eccentric witches and a notorious kidnapper.

BOOK REVIEW by Monica Haynes, CMO

“Firefly Beach” by Meira Pentermann

My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

About a year ago, I picked up a copy of Meira Pentermann’s “Firefly Beach” at my mother’s recommendation.  The title alone intrigued me enough to immediately begin reading. After her mother’s death, a divorce and a looming 40th birthday, Beth Lamonte uncharacteristically decides it’s time to make drastic changes. She abandons her old life and travels to Virginia Pointe, Maine to rediscover herself and a decades old dream. When a mysterious firefly flits about Beth’s room in an apparent attempt to communicate, Beth’s experiences begin to transcend normal logic as she gradually uncovers the mystery behind the disappearance of a missing girl.  Eventually, with the help of the firefly and new friends, Beth learns to trust in love and life and makes a discovery that will change her path forever.

As the twists and turns of this cozy mystery pulled me in, I found myself reading this book from cover to cover in one sitting. Meira Pentermann writes a magical, haunting, emotional tale with a dash of paranormal and a focus on relationships, redemption, and reclamation. I highly recommend it!