OREGON TRAIL NOVELIST VISITS WILLAMETTE WRITERS
Janet Fisher, author of two historical novels based on settlers coming west via the Oregon Trail, will discuss the process of writing and publishing her books at the Feb. 26 meeting of Willamette Writers’ Coast Chapter. The free presentation takes place from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Newport Public Library.
Fisher lives on a Century Farm near Elkton, Oregon, bought by her great-great-grandmother, Martha Poindexter Maupin, subject of A Place of Her Own, published in 2014 by Globe Pequot Press/TwoDot. Her new historical novel, The Shifting Winds, was released in 2016 by the same publisher. She earned a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Oregon, taught college writing, and wrote freelance articles for newspapers. Two of her historical novels were finalists in the Pacific Northwest Writers Association Literary Contest.
In A Place of Her Own, Janet’s great-great-grandmother Martha Maupin comes west over the Oregon Trail in 1850. She defies her parents to marry Garrett Maupin, but their struggles in this raw new land soon dash her dreams of an idyllic life with him. During the fractious run-up to the Civil War, they leave their Donation Land Claim in Lane County, fleeing to Douglas County just ahead of the law. When a wagon accident ends Garrett’s life, Martha dares buy a farm on her own to take care of her family, now one of the few Century Farms in Oregon named for a woman.
The Shifting Winds delves into a true story of Oregon’s past as seen through the eyes of fictional characters. Protagonist Jennie Haviland is torn from her prestigious academy in Utica, New York, when her father takes the family across the Oregon Trail to a frontier brimming with contention between the British and Americans over who will gain the land. In Oregon, she meets handsome British Hudson’s Bay Company clerk Alan Radford, who asks to court her. But American mountain man Jake Johnston aims to shatter Alan’s plans for Jennie and the British plans for Oregon.
This month’s meeting is a change in schedule for the Willamette Writers’ Coast Chapter, which usually meets the third Sunday of each month. Willamette Writers is the largest writers’ organization in Oregon and one of the largest writers’ organizations in the United States. The organization’s goal is to provide and encourage a creative environment and support system for current and aspiring writers. Since its beginning in 1965, Willamette Writers has provided meeting places for the exchange of ideas and information and has initiated programs designed to help writers increase skills related to the craft of writing. For more information, visit http://willamettewriters.com/coast/or Willamette Writers Coast Chapter’s Facebook page.
Willamette Writers thanks the Sylvia Beach Hotel, Hallmark Hotel, Anchor Pier Lodge, Elizabeth Street Inn for donating lodging for their authors and the Newport Public Library for providing a monthly meeting space.