About the Author


Marian Mathews Clark grew up in logging country in Mist, Oregon, the only child in a family of chroniclers. Her mother kept a diary from age thirteen until she died at eighty-seven, and her father wrote poetry about sawmilling, logging and the neighbors.

Though she started writing early, Marian didn’t realize it was a career option. So when she graduated from high school in ‘63, she enrolled in Graceland College in Lamoni, Iowa, and majored in English Education. But after listening to students’ problems as a Resident Assistant and finding student teaching daunting, she concluded she was a one-on-one person and went on to earn a Master’s in Counselor Education from The University of Iowa.

In 1971 she moved back to Lamoni where she assumed the role of Director of Counseling at Graceland and also taught a variety of classes including Counseling, Rhetoric, and a winter term in the Changing Roles of Women. After ten years she decided to pursue writing and in 1985 enrolled in The Iowa Writers’ Workshop. She received her MFA in 1987, the same year she won the Iowa Art Council’s First Place Fiction Award for ‘Houseboats and Peacock Feathers.’

Though she’s lived in Iowa for more than fifty years and calls it home, she’s saved room in her heart for Oregon with its firs and mountains and memories that have formed her. And it’s in that landscape that These Doors was born. As in small towns across the country, in an era when cell phones were science fiction and landline service spotty, the local store whose doors swung wide, was a community’s ears and voice.


These Doors: A Novel, Culicidae Press, 2020
2019 O’jai Film Festival finalist with co-writer Patricia Stevens for feature script Timber.
“My Study on Stay-Puts” in Crossing Class: The Invisible Wall Anthology, Wising Up Press, 2018.
Sixty Something and Flying Solo: A Retiree Sorts it Out in Iowa, Culicidae Press, 2013, re-published in a second edition in 2015.
“Getting There,” Daring To Repair Anthology, Wising Up Press, 2012.
“Just in Case: Alone at Christmas,” Wapsipinicon Almanac, December 2011.
“The Last Straw,” The Lamoni Chronicle, December 9, 2010.
“Getting There,” Persimmon Magazine,” Fall 2008.
“The Dress,” Dutiful Daughters Anthology, 1999.
“Just for the Time Being,” A Ghost at Heart’s Edge” Anthology, 1999.
“Buffalos,” Story, Winter 1998.
“My Study on Stay-Puts,” The Sun, Fall 1992.
“Flossie’s Kid,” Cottonwood Magazine, June 1991.
“Houseboats and Peacock Feathers,” Poets and Critic, Sept. 1990 as a result of the Iowa Art Council’s first place Fiction Award.

Interested in more? Go to Marian’s News page…