Winner of the 2023 Fugere Book Prize
Chris McClain Johnson finds stories everywhere. It’s a joyful obsession rich with muses that first appeared in childhood on family farms in her hometown of Mayfield, Kentucky, where they sparked her imagination as she roamed the fields, hiked winding creek beds, rescued animals dropped on her road, and daydreamed then and still today about characters and scenes beyond her back yard, even beyond her dimension where old souls live on, people can fly and animals talk.
After graduating from Murray State University a few miles down the road and moving to Memphis, Tennessee, Chris learned quickly how to weave her passion into every facet of her career – from writing corporate newsletters and training materials, business policies and technical manuals to teaching writing classes and even writing an alternative sports column.
All the while, her stories waited patiently in the wings until a personal epiphany made it clear it was time for them to fly, especially her novella Three Guesses. Thirty years in the making, this heartfelt story follows three strangers whose long distance friendship evolves through letters written and mailed the old-fashioned way. Their persistent never-meet-in-person stance starts crumbling when they simultaneously face life-altering circumstances that strengthen their bond and change them forever.
From her home in Memphis, alongside three adorable and somewhat bossy rescue cats, Chris is giving her stories the light and love they deserve. When she’s not writing, she spends precious time with family and friends, enjoys her talented son’s music, turns curb finds into heirlooms, makes jewelry, absorbs stories from other authors, and looks forward to the day storytelling becomes a full-time adventure.
Three Guesses, the winning novella of Regal House Publishing’s 2023 Fugere Book Prize, is Chris’s first published novella and will be available in summer 2025.