ALLAGASH, Maine — An Aroostook County native and author is reconnecting with her roots while also making new memories in The County.
Acclaimed writer and Allagash native Cathie Pelletier is an award-winning writer who has written nine novels and had two of them turned into movies. She wrote her first novel, “The Funeral Makers,” in 1986.
Pelletier served as UMPI’s first writer-in-residence in 2008 and also taught a screenwriting class at UMPI. Now, she is poised to strike out into other parts of The County to “get to know towns” that she is not quite as familiar with while also providing some entertainment.
Pelletier will begin that mission when she offers her first reading in southern Aroostook with an appearance on Monday, June 1 at The Vault restaurant in Houlton. The event will include a reception and meet-the-author time starting at 6 p.m. Hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar will be available. The reading will start at 7 p.m.
“The Vault in Houlton was suggested to me as a great restaurant and a nice place to do the informal reading that I want to do,” she explained late last week.
Pelletier said that she will offer a short reading and then participate in a question and answer session. She also will sign books after the session.
In 1998, Doubleday paid her a $1 million advance for her novel “Candles on Bay Street,” written under her pen name K.C. McKinnon. “Candles” eventually became a Hallmark Hall of Fame Productions film starring Alicia Silverstone. Her other McKinnon novel, Dancing at the Harvest Moon, has been translated into 18 languages and, in 2002, became a CBS movie starring Jacqueline Bisset and Valerie Harper. Her latest novel, “Running the Bulls,” won the 2006 Paterson Prize for Fiction.
She also is working with actor Donald Sutherland, who has optioned her original screenplay, “The Luna Christmas,” with hopes to begin filming this year.
While she is no stranger to the County, Pelletier said that she is making her time here as memorable as possible.
“It is interesting,” she noted. “I feel it is true that ‘you can’t go home again,’ but a lot of what I am doing now is making new memories,” said Pelletier. “I’m at the family homestead and I am walking my dogs along the same river that I used to walk along. But I want to get to know some of the towns in the area that I don’t know a lot about, such as Houlton.”
For more information about Cathie Pelletier, visit her Web site at www.kcmckinnon.com. For more information about her reading, presented by the University of Maine at Presque Isle, call 768-9452.