“Being good at planning murders is not what you dream of becoming one day as a child,” Maggie laughs. “I guess it was the Nancy Drew effect, coupled with being raised by an Ontario Provincial Police officer.”
“But,” she adds with a grin, “it sure has been fun over the past few years to answer the question of what I do for a living!”
And, no, in this field Maggie does not take contract work…
Maggie is the author of the popular Farran Mackenzie “Lost Villages” mystery novels. The historical fiction/murder mystery series is based on the construction of the St. Lawrence Seaway and Power Project of the 1950s. The series became a regional bestseller in Eastern Ontario; all four novels have been used in schools in both Eastern Ontario and Upstate New York from Grade Five to post-secondary studies to teach history and English. Titles include: A Violent End (2001), The Brother of Sleep (2004), All Mortall Things (2006), and On a Darkling Plain (2009). As an active public speaker and lecturer, Maggie has spent over a decade showcasing the social, cultural and psychological impact of the St. Lawrence Seaway Project on Canadians affected—while engaging discussion on this “lost” history at local, regional, national and academic levels.
“Historical fiction and murder mysteries just seem to be made for each other,” says Maggie. “It’s a wonderful way to explore how people lived and the events of long ago through the timeless issue of homicide.”
In recognition of her literary work, Maggie has received these honours and awards:
- Ottawa’s Favourite Author (Female) 2017, FACES Magazine 2017 Annual Awards
- Seeker’s Choice Award Literary Artist of the Year 2013, The Local Seeker, Stormont Dundas and Glengarry
- Ontario Hansard: “Beacon 50 Appreciation” (2009) from Jim Brownell, MPP Stormont Dundas and South Glengarry
- Ontario Hansard: “On a Darkling Plain—Congratulations Maggie Wheeler” (2009) from Jim Brownell, MPP Stormont Dundas and South Glengarry
- Ontario Premier’s Award for the Arts 2006 Nominee
- A Violent End chosen as the inaugural novel for the Brockville Public Library’s OneBook,One Community April 2004
- The Brother of Sleep chosen as the inaugural novel for One Book, Many Communities 2004–Cornwall Public Library, Tri-County Library System, and TR Leger Alternative School, Cornwall.