Margaret Murray was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and graduated from Carnegie-Mellon University and Hunter College. She attended the Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center on an American Federation of the Arts fellowship and the Squaw Valley Screenwriters Conference on a National Endowment for the Arts grant. A writer and teacher, she has lived in the San Francisco Bay Area for over thirty years, and is the mother of three children and grandmother too.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I was eight years old when I wrote two pages on a small, spiral bound, lined paper notebook after I read The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner, a teacher turned children’s writer. In addition to wanting to be one of the boxcar children, I wanted to write just like the author. I can see those two pages now, sixty years later. And I still believe what I learned then—writing is really hard work.
What is your writing process?
I write from the ground up where my characters live, seeing what they see. With them, I look out and upward, searching for—you could call it spirit, their vision—and from that cloud-spun, high unknown pace, the story emerges. It's a discovery each time I sit down and write, beginning in the same way. It becomes a practice: earth, sky, spirit, story.
Spiral, a novel of magic realism and epic adventure in the ancient American Southwest.
At the end of a culture that built structures as big as the Roman Coliseum when medieval Europe was still in the Dark Ages, on a high desert landscape of brooding wind and dark storm clouds that never drop rain, the Elders threaten to sacrifice an infant boy to placate the sun dagger and thus end the drought.
In Sundagger.net, an unsuspecting Sara McClelland cannot know her hi-tech life is about to collide with an ancient tragedy. Burnt out from her job, haunted by the disappearance of her son, she finds unexpected mystery when she crawls into a sweat lodge.
In the hot stones of the Indian lodge, Sara is overcome by a vision of a Native American family who leads her to her own.
on Dec. 16, 2010
Floating Point seduced me into a world I yearn for, akin to the 60s "where the good guys were winning," which is how the author, Shelley Buck, feels on her way to purchase a $15,000 boat with her husband and berth it in the San Francisco Bay. They need to solve a looming dilemma--how to live and work in Silicon Valley, a dilemma I share. This memoir has all the lure of the Bay Area, with compelling, quirky characters written with a precise, biting, funny, meticulously-crafted viewpoint. The painstaking observations of how boats and other things work is matched and contrasted with the sensitive, self-critical bent of the narrator who solves her own dilemma while the boat endlessly rocks. Reading this book is a delight--and a journey into the dark waters of our present time.