April 6, 2011

Made It Moment: Jean Henry Mead

Filed under: Made It Moments — jenny @ 8:15 am

Mystery of Spider Mountain

I have long enjoyed reading Jean Henry Mead’s blog posts and posts on a list-serv of which we’re both a part, so I was very happy when she agreed to contribute a Moment on what is perhaps the eve of yet another exciting time in her career.

Jean Henry Mead

I never thought about having “made it” in the publishing industry, but I’ve had some satisfying moments, such as when I realized that I’m currently published by five different publishers, including Oak Tree and Poisoned Pen Press.

I’ve been fortunate to sell every book I’ve written, save one that I wrote in fourth grade to entertain classmates. But I had a leg up by beginning my writing career as a news reporter. Since working in a noisy newsroom in San Diego, I think I could write in the middle of a traffic jam. My first few books were nonfiction because that’s what I wrote for years on a daily basis. But what I really wanted to write was fiction. I used a tall stack of research notes from a centennial history book I had written as the background for my first novel, Escape on the Wind, which later resold and was retitled Escape, a Wyoming Historical Novel. It remains my best selling book, although I’ve since published five mystery novels, including an autobiographical book this month for children, Mystery of Spider Mountain.

It’s a thrill to receive fan mail from as far away as Portugal, Greece and Bangladesh, which reinforces the “small world” concept. The Internet has brought us all so much closer together and, although my books have only been published in English so far, it’s surprising how many readers in other countries speak our language.

After publishing 14 books with small and mid-sized publishers, I’m currently working on an historical novel that has the potential to be picked up by a major publisher. If that happens, I’ll know then that I have “made it.”

Jean Henry Mead writes mystery/suspense and western historical novels. She’s also an award-winning photojournalist published domestically as well as abroad. Among her writing industry jobs were editor of In Wyoming magazine as well as two small literary presses. She served as historian for Press Women, president of Wyoming Writers, national publicity director and secretary-treasurer for Western Writers of America, and is a member of Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, Women Writing the West, Western Writers of America, Wyoming Writers, and Author’s Guild. She also has two blog sites: Mysterious Writers and Writers of the West and blogs regularly at Murderous Musings and Make Mine Mystery.


  1. Congratulations on all your success! I hope your next book does wonderfully too.

    Comment by Savvy — April 6, 2011 @ 9:43 am

  2. Thank you for including me on your great blogsite, Jenny, and for the kind words. The best part of writing for me is that I enjoy it so much, which makes up for the pay most writers receive–or lack thereof. :)

    Comment by Jean Henry Mead — April 6, 2011 @ 12:01 pm

  3. I’m glad that you’ve joined Oak Tree Press’s group of authors.


    Comment by Marilyn Meredith — April 6, 2011 @ 12:18 pm

  4. Thanks, Marilyn. It’s a pleasure to join such a talented and award-winning group of writers at Oak Tree Press.

    Comment by Jean Henry Mead — April 6, 2011 @ 12:44 pm

  5. We’re very excited to have Jean Henry Mead’s “Interstate” series with Oak Tree Press. And Jenny, thank you for all that you do for the writing community. Your site is one everyone should be monitoring.

    Comment by Sunny Frazier — April 6, 2011 @ 12:52 pm

  6. Very good story, Jean. I hope your historical novel is picked up by a big house, but honestly, I think you’ve made it already.

    Comment by Marja McGraw — April 6, 2011 @ 1:24 pm

  7. Congratulations, Jean. Fingers crossede.

    Comment by Geraldine Evans — April 6, 2011 @ 1:45 pm

  8. Thank you, Marja, Sunny and Geraldine. I consider myself fortunate to have met everyone here today.

    Comment by Jean Henry Mead — April 6, 2011 @ 2:13 pm

  9. I’m looking forward to your Oak Tree title, Jean. Best of luck with the new historicial, too.

    Comment by C.K.Crigger — April 6, 2011 @ 2:21 pm

  10. Wow, to get foreign fan mail. I’ve received many comments via my parents, but not any letters or email and certainly not from someone from another country. That’s exciting.

    Comment by Stephen Brayton — April 6, 2011 @ 4:29 pm

  11. I’m fairly new to Oak Tree Press too. Seems like a great place to be. Especially for getting to know some great writers, and the staff couldn’t be more helpful.
    Nice to know you.
    Bonnie B.A. Kelly

    Comment by B.A. Kelly — April 6, 2011 @ 6:15 pm

  12. I didn’t receive foreign mail for quite a while when I started writing, Stephen. It comes with time. I’ve even received requests for photos, which I wonder are going to be used for dartboards. :)

    Comment by Jean Henry Mead — April 7, 2011 @ 6:14 pm

  13. It’s nice to meet you, too, B.A. I’m sure we’re going to enjoy the Oak Tree experience. :)

    Comment by Jean Henry Mead — April 7, 2011 @ 6:15 pm

  14. [...] very pleased to welcome Jean Henry Mead back to the blog. Jean’s Made It Moment appears here. Today she shares some of the ins and outs of a topic that is increasingly relevant to authors as [...]

    Pingback by Suspense Your Disbelief » Guest Post: Jean Henry Mead — October 5, 2011 @ 8:59 am

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