Small Press Friday Welcomes Melodie Campbell

Welcome to my Small Press Friday Series and to award-winning author Melodie Campbell.  


This post celebrates Indie publishing.  But first, step back with me two years.

I’ve always been known as a writer of short mystery and suspense.  With 40 short story publications and 6 awards for mystery fiction, my first novel had to be a mystery.  Everyone said so.  I started three of them.  Two weren’t bad.  But somehow I could never get up the energy to complete them.

Then a strange thing happened.  I was sitting at my desk one day, totally overwhelmed with work and parental caregiving, and thought, if I could walk through that wall into another world, I would.  Rowena Through the Wall had her start that night.  If I couldn’t walk through that wall, she could! 

For a mystery writer, this is akin to walking off the job.  For the General Manager of Crime Writers of Canada, it feels like treason!  Write 100,000 words of comic fantasy adventure?  It wasn’t genre romance, and it wasn’t mystery.  Where the hell was I going to sell it?

I submitted that first novel Rowena Through the Wall to one of the big six. They loved the premise, but told me to give them a rewrite with a more predictable romance structure. For Rowena, this would be a major rewrite, and it wouldn’t be fun at all. 

Was this the end of the line for Rowena?  I tried another avenue.  I submitted to a small independent traditional publisher.  Here’s what I’ve discovered:

Indie Publishers want smart, fun, readable fiction for their publishing lines too.  But some are willing to slip the bonds of specific genres to experience something a little different. They’ll take risks.

Our books are like surrogate babies.  We create them, and then after birth we pass them on to our publishers and editors to ‘raise’ them, and bring them to market. Indie publishers see the writer/publisher relationship as a partnership.  I always keep in mind that the Indie publisher is putting his/her own money into the production of my book.  She is taking a risk on me.

For a writer, this is magic.

Melodie Campbell is the author of 40 short stories and three novels, including the classic Agatha Christie style mystery A Purse to Die For, co-authored with Cynthia St-Pierre.  She has won 6 awards for short fiction, and was a finalist for both the 2012 Derringer Awards and the Arthur Ellis Awards.

The victim wore haute couture…
When fashionista and television celeb Gina Monroe goes home to attend the funeral of her late grandmother, the last thing she expects to encounter is murder.  Who is the dead woman in the woods behind the family home?  And why is she dressed in Milano designer clothes?

“Fast, funny, furious. A great read and proof once again that Canadian crimewriters are among the best in the world.”  Janet Kellough, author of Sowing Poison

Ebook and paperback available on,, and European Amazon sites.

“Is that a broadsword on your belt, or are you just glad to see me?”
When Rowena falls through her classroom wall into a medieval world, she doesn’t count on being kidnapped – not once, but twice, dammit. Unwanted husbands keep piling up; not only that, she has eighteen-year-old Kendra to look out for, and a war to prevent.  Good thing she can go back through the wall when she needs to…or can she?

“Hot and hilarious!” Midwest Book Review
Available on Amazon