Posts Tagged: growing up gracie

Author Interview With Maggie Fechner

24 Nov, 2010 by in maggie fechner, YA contemporary 5 comments

Our interview is with the author of Growing Up Gracie, just released by Cedar Fort books. (see our review below this post)

What made you decide to be a writer? Any authors or books that inspired you? Although I have written since I was very young, I didn’t grow up planning to be a writer. However my high school journalism teacher had a very wonderful influence on me and he really encouraged me in my writing.

I noticed you are also a photographer (YAY) What hobbies take up your “free time”? Yes, I am a portrait photographer with a small business, specializing in family photography. (I saw you are too!). Between writing and photography I spend way too much time on the computer. However, in the summer our family really enjoys boating. My husband wake boards and I spend the whole summer attempting to get up on the board. (Athleticism never was my strong suit).

There are several references to other books in Growing Up Gracie, tell us about those. Yes. Gracie loves to read. Some of her favorites were some of mine. I remember my fifth grade teacher reading us aloud Where the Red Fern Grows and I was so engrossed in it. Also, we both loved Pride and Prejudice.

What would the playlist for Growing Up Gracie Look like?
Okay, this is my favorite interview question ever (and coming from a former reporter, that’s quite a compliment!) Gracie’s playlist would definitely be heavy on the Chris LeDoux and Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. Probably a lot of Garth Brooks. Not so much the newer country, but the fun older stuff. She would also have a little Cotton-Eyed Joe or something fun and dancey to rock out with Liza and Chelsea to on those long lonely Wyoming highways.

Any other books in the works?
Yes! The Letters Never Sent is a mainstream (non-LDS, but still very clean :)) historical fiction novel. It’s about the journey toward finding home and a sense of self for several women in the Cameron family. I have just completed a rough draft and am beginning revisions.
Also I have hopes to create a Fremont Family series with the next book focusing on one of Gracie’s sisters, Danielle.

photo taken from Maggie’s author blog

Tell us why you chose Cody, Wyoming for the setting? How is is similar to places you have lived? I grew up in Cody. And although I’ve been away for the past 12 years, I often still refer to it as home. It was a wonderful place to grow up and I love the small town feel. I love the beautiful mountains and the proximity to Yellowstone Park. Cody has a unique country atmosphere as it has been coined the “Rodeo Capitol of the World” and is the only place in the world with a rodeo every night of the summer. Although my real life hasn’t taken me back there, my writing seems to take me back again and again.

What was your favorite chapter to write and why?
Hmmm… That’s a tough one. I think my two favorite parts are both at the end–one is with Gracie’s best friends and another is with her true love–but I wouldn’t want to spoil anything 🙂

Are there lessons from Growing Up Gracie you hope others will take away?
Absolutely. Especially teenage girls who are feeling average. I would hope they would take away that God makes each person amazing in their own unique ways and by following their hearts they can live extraordinary lives.

What has been the most rewarding moment of your career so far?
The funnest moment of my writing career was as a reporter when I went skydiving to write a story about a local skydiving club. The most rewarding moment of my writing career so far was when I was contacted by Cedar Fort Publishing and heard the words, we want to offer you a contract for your novel.

Thank you so much for the interview! Visit Maggie’s website at

Order Growing Up Gracie in Kindle or Paperback here on Amazon, Cedar Fort or from Deseret Book and we are giving away a copy of Growing Up Gracie to our readers, enter by filling out the form below.


Growing Up Gracie by Maggie Fechner

23 Nov, 2010 by in maggie fechner 1 comment

ISBN 9781599554532
Published by Cedar Fort, Inc.
November 11, 2011
4 stars

As the fifth of six kids, it’s sometimes hard for Gracie Fremont to see what makes her special. But with the help of friends, family, and her faith, Gracie discovers that even the most ordinary girl can do extraordinary things. Told with sweetness, humor, and heart, this unique coming-of-age story will resonate with readers of all ages.

My first impression when I got this book in the mail was that this is my kind of cover! I LOVE it, as a sucker for photography of old trucks and vignetted edges. Plus the image fits perfectly with the story. I think this is one of the best covers I have ever seen from Cedar Fort’s design team. Major score for author Maggie Fechner!

There is a warm comfort that comes from reading Growing Up Gracie, the memoir of one teen and her two best friends growing up in Cody, Wyoming. Gracie feels ordinary and sometimes lost in her family dynamic. But her conviction to follow her instinct and do what feels right leads her life in many surprising directions. She, like all of us, has unique talents and an influence on others that only she can make. Discovering it for herself takes some time. The book pace is slow moving, much like life in a small town, but I stayed engaged until the very last page. Each chapter is a glimpse at Gracie as she matures from grade school to becoming a mother herself. It’s a coming of age tale of an American family and the bonds of friendship.

Maggie Fechner addresses with candor and grace the growing pains of teenage pregnancy, adoption, finding a testimony, making your place in the world and receiving personal answers to prayer. She weaves in a small town romance with its roots in friendship and faith. I am looking forward to reading more from Maggie as this is book is just the beginning and a first installment in a new Fremont Family series.

Here’s a sneak peek excerpt from the book taken from the author’s website

“Burnt sienna, auburn or even ginger colored hair was what Gracie Fremont longed for as her bony fingers held waxy crayons next to her long locks one by one. But if the timid, skinny five-year-old were honest with herself, the closest match was brown. Plain old brown. And that brown crayon defined Gracie Fremont’s life: Average. Nothing difficult or unusual or even interesting ever happened to this little girl sandwiched in an LDS family of eight {six}. But growing up in rural Cody, Wyoming, Gracie learns that lasting friendships, hidden talents and developing a testimony of her own are some of life’s most precious gifts. And finding true love is a fantastic bonus.”

To learn more visit Maggie’s website at (as an added bonus; you’ll love her playlist!)