Qualities of Light

A heartfelt story of family, friendship, and against all odds, budding love.

--Jonathan Odell, author of The Healing

Moore traces the contours of shadow without ever letting us forget the transformative

power of light.

--Kaethe Schwehn, author of The Rending and the Nest


Need one-on-one help from a knowledgeable author? Click here for manuscript review, editing, and personal coaching for your writing.

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Writing the Container of Your Story

Your Book Starts Here

        Winner 2011

  NH Literary Awards

Readers Choice Award

Also available on audio

The consummate How-To Guide for everyone who has a book percolating inside them. —Nancy Slonim Aronie


Photo credit:
Bruce Fuller Photography




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Winter writing retreats and independent study


Best creative week ever! My book took a leap forward. Wonderful community, relaxed, yet productive. I can see why writers return every year.

—past attendee


Give yourself—and your creativity—a week away, where you can focus on your book, have plenty of time to write, plus gain craft skills at your level through workshops and daily coaching sessions with Mary. Excellent accomodations, beautiful locations, where you can get quiet enough to hear your own words. For writers at any level with a book project in any genre.  Click on dates above to find out more.    Find out more >

Tucson, Arizona:  February 10-14, 2020

Tanque Verde Ranch and Resort

Santa Fe, New Mexico: March 30-April 3, 2020

Historic Santa Fe Hilton on the Plaza

Madeline Island, Wisconsin: July 20-24, 2020

Madeline Island School of the Arts


Fall in-person workshops

at the Loft Literary Center, Minneapolis

The Art of Voice and Theme in Fiction and Memoir

Thursday, October 24, 12:00-5:00 p.m.

Every writer craves an authentic voice and strong themes—two key elements that make writing stand out. Both voice and theme reveal authenticity and emotional truth, linking writer and reader in a personal way. But how does a writer identify her or his unique voice, develop it, and use it to craft themes that matter? And does theme equal author’s intent in a piece of writing, or does it emerge organically, surprising both writer and reader with its depth? Find out more >

at the Loft Literary Center, Minneapolis

Your Book Starts Here:  How to Plan, Write, and Develop Your Book

Friday, October 25, 12:00-5:00 p.m.

All books need strong structures to keep readers engaged and turning the page. This workshop taught by the author of thirteen books in three genres will lead you through the steps to explore your book idea and its possible structures, get feedback on your idea, and come away with a visual map to help you plan, write, and revise your book. Find out more >


Retainer program

"I love how my book is finally taking shape, with your remarkable guidance and amazing gift for eliciting my best work." "Your help and excellent counsel has helped me persevere to write my first book.  I can't thank you enough." “You've given me so much—to not only jump start my rewrite in response to the agent feedback I received, but also to keep improving my writing on future projects."

—past retainer clients


Get personalized help with your writing project at any stage.  Five weeks of private coaching with check-ins by email, customized assignments, and evaluation of up to 250 d/s pages of your book-in-progress.  Limited spaces available.  Now booking for fall and winter 2019.  Find out more >