Fiction is the third career for Marj Charlier, the author of nine published novels. She is currently writing a series of novels about a declining fictional town in Iowa that is trying to rebuild, told through the eyes of five women "of a certain age" whose career and life plans have suddenly been upended, and who are trying to re-invent themselves as they revitalize their town. She will present the first two of those novels, "Gracie's Revolution" and "Jackie's Campaign," at the Pavilion.
Marj is also publishing a series of romance novels based in Palm Springs, California, under the pen name Marjorie Pinkerton Miller (borrowing her grandmother's and her mother's maiden names).
Marj started out as a reporter at the Story City Herald in high school, and after getting a bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University and a masters degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, she worked at several small and mid-sized dailies before joining the Wall Street Journal as a staff reporter. Her twelve years of work at the Journal took her to all 50 states in the union at least once.
After twenty years in journalism, she went back to school for her MBA and began a second career in corporate finance. As a VP of investor relations, she worked in financial accounting and reporting for public companies, and did competitive and financial analysis. She was responsible for public company annual reports, executive conference call scripts and executive speeches. Her travels with executives and investors took her as far as the Atacama Desert in Chile and the mining gulags of northern Siberia.
While finishing her twenty years of work in finance departments, she wrote her first novel, "Putt for Show," which she self-published in 2013. After retiring, she wrote the sequel, "Drive for Dough," and three other novels about women facing major career and life changes, "Hacienda," "Professional Lies" and "Thwack!" Her romance novel, "One Way to Succeed," the first of the Boutique Hotels of Palm Springs Romances, was published late in 2016, and "No Way to Win" will be published right before the festival.
Marj was born in Iowa, has lived in eight states as an adult, and now resides in Palm Springs full time with her husband. She has attended the Iowa Writers summer intensive novel-writing workshop, and leads workshops in the Coachella Valley on self-publishing.