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She’s got chutzpah

Ruth Wire recently published her first novel at age 90. [Jamie Lusch / Mail Tribune]

At 90, Ashland woman publishes her first novel

“Life can be a joyous encounter with the possible.”

— Ruth Wire

“Writing is not a lonely profession,” says Ruth Wire. “My characters keep me company.”

The characters in the Ashland resident’s first novel have kept her company since the early 1950s when she was told that her 30- page autobiography — penned for a writing class — should be fleshed out into a full-length piece of fiction.

Although Wire insists “The Night Birds Still Sing” is fictional, there are fragments of her own childhood scattered throughout the novel. Protagonist Phoebe Feldman’s mother and father resemble her own parents, whose game of emotional tug-of-war stretched her tender heart to the point of breaking. And, there are lively composite sketches featuring the starlets, jazz musicians, con artists, long-suffering writers and Holocaust survivors drawn from her memories of the boarders who walked the hallways of her mother’s 10-room boarding house in Hollywood, California during the 1940s.

Read the original article in the Medford Mail Tribune here.