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Best-selling author: 'In each book, there is a little bit of the Northwoods'Submitted: 09/02/2015
THREE LAKES - A best-selling author uses the Northwoods as inspiration for her writing. The area will also get some focus in one of her next pieces.

Mary Pat Kelly uses historical fiction to research her ancestors and tell a good story.

She spoke to an audience in Three Lakes Wednesday night about her past work.


She's visited Three Lakes every year since she was a young girl. Kelly enjoys meeting other people who draw creativity from the Northwoods.

"The best thing that happens to me after a talk is when someone comes up, and they say, 'reading your book got me interested in my own family,'" Kelly said.

Her books include Galway Bay and the new Of Irish Blood. Her next book in the saga will trace the rise of Chicago Mayor Ed Kelly and his interactions with Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Joseph Kennedy.

"I found a wonderful, wonderful letter from Franklin Roosevelt, inviting {Mayor Kelly} to a meeting at the White House. And his reply is 'you know, Frank, I'm up in the Northwoods. I'm in Eagle River. I think I'll pass.' That shows you the allure of the Northwoods."

The author read books at the library in Three Lakes as a kid.

She still loves the feel of a book, but she believes changing technology gives people more opportunities.
"I think younger people, because there are [so many options]. They can make movies online. They can write songs online. I just think there is a huge avenue now for creativity, and I think it is wonderful."

Kelly says she's also trying to tweet, and added that there is merit in condensing a clear though in so few characters. Overall, she says the Northwoods helps her write.

"It makes me feel very connected to the creative spirit and everything, and it makes me want to write. And many of the scenes in this new book do take place in the Northwoods, and in each book there is a little bit of the Northwoods."

Kelly was born in Chicago and now lives in New York City with her husband.


Story By: Adam Fox

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