Living Room writer profile: Mary Wasche
“To everyone who has a novel in the works, in a drawer, on the dining room table, or saved in a computer file, I’m advising you to never give up.”
So says Mary Wasche, an Eagle River author who recently published her first novel “Escape to Alaska.”
The book offers a chance to view 1960s Alaska through the eyes of a young Minnesota woman seeking refuge in Whittier after witnessing a murder.
Wasche’s second novel “Murder in Wasilla” is set to publish next spring, and she’s working on a third, a Civil War era kidnapping story.
“It took a lot of persistence to get published,” Wasche said. “I have enough rejection letters to start a bonfire.”
Wasche and her husband, Marty, have lived in Chugiak and Eagle River since coming to Alaska from Minnesota in 1996 on a temporary job assignment. They never left.
“I feel lucky that I get to write from my Hiland Road home office with a view of Mount McKinley, and where bears, moose, porcupines, magpies, eagles and weasels visit the yard,” she said.
Wasche served as President of the Alaska chapter of Romance Writers of America, Editorof the Chugiak Eagle River Historical Society newsletter, founded a book club and is a member of the Chugach Writers Group, the Alaska Writers Guild, the Pacific Northwest Writers Association and 49 Alaska Writers.
She’s been writing since the age of 17, when she won a Minnesota state writing contest.
“It’s incredible to actually hold the book in my hands at last,” she said. This month’s edition of The Living Room: Eagle River Reads includes Candy Stanley, reading from “One Wing’s Gift,” written by friend Joan Harris; Nancy Pfeiffer, reading from her book “Riding into the Heart of Patagonia; Brendan R. Van Valkenburgh; Ceal Smith; Tonja Woelber, reading from old and new poetry selections; Claudia Holmes, reading from her book “I Survived Hitler: The Story of Linda Ryngermacher Fishman; and Mary Wasche, reading from her book “Escape to Alaska.”