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Dying to Get Published by Judy Fitzwater

Dying to Get Published (1998)

by Judy Fitzwater

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162573,595 (3.14)5



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Liked it enough to buy the next one in the series
The main character, as-yet-unpublished author Jennifer Marsh, decides to plan a murder in order to liven up her writing. A touch of realism, or writing what she knows by planning it. But when the murder really happens, her plans make her suspect number one.
It's an easy, quick-paced story, and Jennifer is a bit quirky. Nice, occasionally a dingbat, has her moments, but quirky. She has a new romantic interest that adds some fun to the story, and lots of female friends who are supportive. Plus, the victim is obviously deserving of murder -- a book agent. In addition to being well-written, with great story-lines, there were some seriously funny moments that made me smile repeatedly (people seem to frown on you laughing out loud when you are by yourself reading on buses or in restaurants, so I held myself to grinning).
The book was a little tough for me to get into at first, and I initially hated the main character who talks to her future, as yet unconceived, child on a fairly regular basis as a plot device.
I received no compensation, not even a free copy, in exchange for this review. I am not personal friends with the author, but I did interact with her online. ( )
  polywogg | Mar 30, 2016 |
From Amazon: Jennifer Marsh is a mystery writer with a stack of eight unpublished manuscripts and rejection letters to match filling her closet. She's sure that if she can just get famous for something, someone will have to publish her books. Why not murder?

She'll find a target so mean that she'd actually be doing the world a favor by bumping him or her off. And she knows just the person:
Penney Richmond, a high-powered literary agent who's made it her job to ruin people's lives. All Jennifer has to do is frame herself, do the deed, and come out with an iron-clad alibi, and she'll be well on her way to getting a three book deal. So what if she chickens out at the last minute? A vegetarian good girl who rescued a greyhound could never actually kill someone. But when Penney is found murdered and the police think Jennifer did it, she’d better find the real murderer before she goes away... for life.

Along with her eccentric writer's group, spunky old ladies with a nose for sleuthing, her neurotic greyhound, and a sexy, sarcastic reporter named Sam, Jennifer embarks on a journey filled with danger, deception, and disguises that could leave her Dying to Get Published ( )
  AdorableArlene | May 16, 2014 |
Jennifer is having trouble getting her book published, and blames it on evil literary agent Penney, so what could be more logical than murdering Penney and using that as the plot for a book. WHAT? This premise seemed distasteful, though it was done tongue in cheek. As Jennifer solicits opinions from her writing group on the best way to carry out the hypothetical crime, things happen which I won't spoil. I dunno, it didn't sit right with me. ( )
  ennie | Dec 4, 2013 |
Jennifer Marsh really wanted to have her book published. After holding Jennifer’s manuscript for a year, agent Penney Richmond told her it wouldn’t sell and refused to speak with her. Jennifer decided she would kill murder someone as a research project so her story would be more realistic and she would learn how murderers thought.
Jennifer talked to the other members of her writing class to get suggestions about how to commit the murder: gaining access to the victim, establishing the alibi, choosing the weapon, etc. It didn’t take Jennifer long to learn that Penney had a lot of enemies so she decided that Penney would be the victim. Along the way, she learned about a news anchor who allegedly committed suicide by jumping off a roof and gets involved in finding out the truth behind his death.
Eventually she began having doubts about actually murdering Penney. “Why had she ever thought that walking through some idiotic plan would give her some secret element that would finally make her books sell? Was that all she wanted out of life?
“She wanted to be published more than almost anything in this world, but this charade was not the way to do it. She’d never know how a murderer felt. She couldn’t conceive of it.”
After she reached this conclusion, Penney was murdered and Jennifer was seen at the location and her alibi fell apart. Jennifer was the prime suspect. To save herself, she had to find the real murderer.
The book was witty. In one segment, while she is trying to determine how much poison she would have to use to knock out the person who was to be her alibi, she poured wine into two glasses, a blue one for him and a pink one for herself. “She’d seen too many whodunits–not to mention Danny Kay’s flagon-wit-the-dragon, chalice-with-the-palace routine–where the drugged glass got switched to leave herself guessing which one had the pills. Blue was for boys; pink was for girls.”
The story includes several interesting, well-developed characters as well as humorous, clever sidelines. One elderly woman, who Jennifer cultivated as part of her plot, told the police she had seen Jennifer in the building. She also served the officers tea but deliberately placed the tea bags into the cups of coffee to sabotage her reliability. Another woman referred to a Miss Georgia winner who sang and danced ballet simultaneously.
Subplots include her yet to be born child. No, she wasn’t pregnant or in a relationship but very much wanted to get married and have a baby whom she had named “Jaimie.” (“Jennifer had hoped to make a scrapbook for little Jaimie detailing his/her mother’s success before his/her– dang this gender nonsense–birth.”
DYING TO GET PUBLISHED is the first of the Jennifer Marsh mysteries. I look forward to reading her future adventures.
This book was a free Amazon download. ( )
  Judiex | Jun 15, 2013 |
Lightweight detective novel with original setting. Not much insight into the publishing world, although it keep suggesting ... tantalizing the reader. ( )
  ague | Dec 21, 2007 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0449002942, Mass Market Paperback)


What does it take to get a book contract? That's the lament of every unpublished author--including aspiring murder-mystery novelist Jennifer Marsh.

After submitting eight diligently crafted manuscripts to every prominent publisher in New York, Jennifer has collected enough rejection letters to wallpaper a room. But that doesn't stop her from concocting one killer of a scheme for her next novel.

And suddenly Jennifer's lifelong love affair with crime fiction brings her face to face with real-life murder. . . .

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:25:45 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

"...Jennifer's lifelong love affair with crime fiction brings her face-to-face with real-life murder..."

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