Marianne Wiggins’s novels engage both with the tumult of history and the shadowed depths of the human heart. From the making of the atomic bomb to the capturing of the American West on film, this award-winning writer has taken on some of the most complex topics in contemporary fiction.
Read the interview
Exclusive: Hear our audio interview with Wiggins (17:24)
Los Angeles, California
Date of Birth:
September 8, 1947
Place of Birth:
Manheim Township High School, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania
Whiting Award, 1989; Janet Heidiger Kafka Prize for best novel written by an American woman for John Dollar, 1990
|Wiggins's Latest Novel|
|The Shadow Catcher|
Wiggins takes a fascinating approach to fictionalizing the life of photographer Edward Sheriff Curtis (1868-1952) -- along with that of a woman named "Marianne Wiggins" in her latest work. The book opens as Wiggins presents her newly completed Curtis novel to a Hollywood agent. Curtis photographed American Indians in the early 20th century, and Marianne attacks the common image of Curtis as a swashbuckler who risked his life to photograph his favorite subjects. Even as she shows that Curtis staged the shots, and was an absentee husband and father at best, the agent is enthralled. Marianne, ambivalent, arrives home to a phone call that her father is in a Las Vegas hospital-the father who has been dead for 30 years. From that setup, the novel moves seamlessly back and forth between Marianne's painstaking research into Curtis's life and the journey she undertakes seeking closure with her father's past.
|From Our Interview|
|In our exclusive interview, Wiggins shared some interesting anecdotes about herself. "I'm fascinated by the narrative of geology and I’m a veritable pack rat of a collector on the road," she tell us. "I keep a rock hammer in my car. And as I type this, my eye travels over the million years beside me. I can reach out and cradle eons in my hand." |
|Photo by Lara Porzak||