Mary Jessica Woods

Author and Writer

I was raised and homeschooled in the Chicago suburbs, where I read as many adventure stories as I could get my hands on. At the age of ten, I realized that I was doomed to be a writer and I’ve been following the muse ever since. Seeking adventure, I headed out west to Wyoming Catholic College, where I climbed mountains, rappelled off cliffs, and studied the Great Books.

My education immersed me in the best literature, philosophy, and theology of the West–a depth of tradition that I hope to bring to my own creative work. The most compelling fantasy and sci-fi have the same elements as any other great work of fiction: an understanding of the order of Creation, of goodness and evil, and of the spiritual battleground of the human heart. My time at Wyoming Catholic grounded me in this understanding, which is so crucial to creating true and beautiful works of art.

After graduating summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in the Liberal Arts, I returned to the Midwest to work as an editor. I also volunteer as an editorial assistant for the literary magazine Dappled Things, and my nonfiction has appeared in America MagazineCatholic World Report, and First Things. In my mind, I spend most of my time on distant planets or alien spaceships, but I actually live in rural Michigan.

In October, Mary published her debut novel, Markmaker, now available from Chrism Press.