Marie Benedict, Writer, Historical Fiction (Photo by Jo Ann Mathews)

Women and Adversity:
March, Women’s History Month
Marie Benedict
Writer of Historical Fiction

As I said in my post about Pam Jenoff, I can’t let Women’s History Month pass without featuring women who write historical novels.

Marie Benedict is well known for digging into history to find women who were overlooked despite their accomplishments. She says her mission is to “excavate from the past the most important women in history to really shine the light on them and their contributions, their legacies and the modern issues.”

I met Benedict in January when she gave a presentation and book signing at Silver Coast Winery in Ocean Isle Beach, N.C. She was gracious enough to answer the two questions I ask women who have made a name for themselves as successful writers:

  • What obstacles did you have to overcome when you decided to be a writer?
  • What obstacles do you face now that you are a successful novelist?

First, let’s learn a bit about Benedict.


Marie Benedict bio:

  • Born Heather Marie Benedict in 1969 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Graduated from Boston College, concentrating on history and art history
  • Graduated from Boston University School of Law
  • Practiced law in New York for 10 years

Personal life:
Married James Terrell in May 2002
The couple has two sons

Writing life:
Benedict published seven books under her married name, Heather Terrell, before she began publishing under Marie Benedict

  • The Chrysalis was the first published in 2007
  • The Boundary was the last published in 2014

    Benedict began writing  under Marie Benedict with:

  • The Other Einstein in 2016 and followed it with seven more books, most recently
  • The Mitford Affair in 2023

  She has two audible books:

  • Smoke Signal
  • Agent 355

 The answers to my questions:

  • What obstacles did you have to overcome when you decided to be a writer?  She says:
  • First of all, it was risky. I had a very successful, established career as a lawyer.
  • What obstacles do you face now that you are a successful novelist?
  • It’s time. I published one-to-two books a year. Trying to balance that.

Learn more:
The History of Marie Benedict | Stories About the Best-Selling Author (

My ebooks available at and

Honoring 23 Black Women, Recognizing 23 Notable Mothers, Saluting 23 Faithful Suffragists  





Article By: Jo Ann Mathews

I published three ebooks in 2020: Women and Adversity, Honoring 23 Black Women; Women and Adversity, Recognizing 23 Notable Mothers; and Women and Adversity, Saluting 23 Faithful Suffragists to commemorate the hundredth anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment giving women the right to vote. These books are meant to be study guides for all students from grade school through college to help in choosing topics for assignments and to learn more about these noteworthy women. Go to, and to learn more.

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