Fischer, Mary A.
Fischer, Mary A.
Writer, journalist, and television producer. GQ, former senior writer; People, former journalist and correspondent; Law and Justice Unit, ABC Television, consulting producer, 2004.
John Bartlow Martin Award, 1993; National Magazine Award finalist, 1994, 1996; first place, Feature Writing award, Regional Magazine Association, 1998, for "The Mysterious Death of Heiress Margaret Lesher," San Francisco Magazine.
(With James Boulgarides and Elizabeth Gjelten) Are You in the Right Job?, Monarch Press (New York, NY), 1984.
Stealing Love: Confessions of a Dognapper, Harmony Books (New York, NY), 2006.
Contributor to periodicals, including Men's Journal, New York, Rolling Stone, Elle, Reader's Digest, San Francisco Magazine, Village Voice, Life, People, U.S. News and World Report, California Lawyer, Washington Times, Los Angeles Times, and O, the Oprah Magazine.
Mary A. Fischer is a magazine journalist and author who has contributed features and news stories to a variety of publications. A longtime senior writer for GQ, she was twice nominated for the National Magazine Award for pieces published in that magazine. Fischer is also a television producer who has created programming for local television stations and for the Discovery Channel.
Stealing Love: Confessions of a Dognapper is Fischer's memoir of how she developed a "sense of justice that led her to become a crime reporter and, more recently, a savior of suffering dogs," rescuing them by blatantly stealing them from their cruel and abusive owners, commented a Publishers Weekly reviewer. Fischer traces her moral outrage and desire for justice to her youth. When she was four years old, her mother succumbed to a deep depression following the death of Fischer's maternal grandmother. Her father, an alcoholic and charming womanizer, had her mother committed to a mental hospital, where she was to spend the next ten years undergoing harrowing treat- ments. Meanwhile, Fischer and her sister were sent away to a convent boarding school, where their mother's psychiatric condition and their broken home stigmatized them. The sisters were later allowed to live with their father while attending Catholic high school, but their relationship was never the same. Fischer traces how these early tragedies galvanized her need to seek justice for those who could not help themselves. To this end, she became a crime reporter and magazine journalist. Among Fischer's journalistic crusades for justice is her reporting of the McMartin preschool abuse case, in which members of a family-owned preschool were accused of abusing the children in their care, arrested, tried, and jailed on the weakest of evidence. Unpopular at the time, Fischer's reports in favor of the McMartins have since been proven accurate, and the falsely accused were acquitted. Since then, Fischer has become interested in the plight of abused animals, particularly dogs, which led to her bold decision to help the unfortunate creatures even if she had to steal them from their tormentors. "A person could easily become bitter and disillusioned with the world, but for Fischer, her experiences seem to have honed her sense of injustice and, even more important, her hunger to right the wrongs she encounters," commented Miriam Wolf in the San Francisco Chronicle. A Kirkus Reviews contributor called Fischer's book a "remarkable look at the injustices of the mental health and judicial systems." "Through dogs," Wolf concluded, "Fischer seems to have discovered that love is not always about pain and endings, and that with enough love and hard work, even the biggest wrongs can be righted."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Fischer, Mary A., Stealing Love: Confessions of a Dognapper, Harmony Books (New York, NY), 2006.
Kirkus Reviews, June 15, 2006, review of Stealing Love, p. 613.
People, November 13, 2006, review of Stealing Love, p. 51.
Publishers Weekly, June 19, 2006, review of Stealing Love, p. 53.
San Francisco Chronicle, August 28, 2006, Miriam Wolf, "Writer Fills Void of Childhood with Love for Canines," review of Stealing Love.
USA Today, October 9, 2006, Carol Memmott, "Love for a Dog Delivered Them to Unexpected Lives," review of Stealing Love.