Sue Boggio and Mare Pearl grew up together as best friends in West Des Moines, Iowa. Sue attended nursing school at Iowa Lutheran launching her career specializing in Pediatrics, Child Psychiatry, and Occupational medicine. Mare Pearl studied musical theater in New York City at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy and eventually became a Mental Health Technician, working with children and adolescents in inpatient psychiatry. Both Sue and Mare credit their work at the UNM Children and Adolescent Psychiatric Center as invaluable instruction in their psychodynamic approach to characterization in fiction writing.
With a history of pairing up to write short stories, they formed a creative collaboration in the mid-1990s. Honing their craft with the support of the Southwest Writers Workshop, their first novel, Sunlight and Shadow, won a fiction prize from SWW in 2001, leading to its eventual publication by NAL/Penguin in 2004.
In 2012, their second novel, A Growing Season, was published by the University of New Mexico Press along with a new edition of Sunlight and Shadow. In 2013, A Growing Season was awarded finalist in the Zia Award for fiction from New Mexico Press Women, and the Willa Award from Women Writing the West, and won the Tony Hillerman Award for Best Fiction from the New Mexico/Arizona Book Awards. In 2014, Sunlight and Shadow also won the Tony Hillerman Award for Best Fiction. Their third novel in the series, Long Night Moon, was released by UNM Press March 1, 2017 and won the Tony Hillerman Award for Best Fiction in 2017 and the Zia Award for best adult fiction from New Mexico Press Women in 2019.
Their latest novel, Hungry Shoes, inspired by their work with abused and neglected children, is being published in September 2023 by UNM Press.
Sue Boggio and Mare Pearl have presented writing workshops at Southwest Writers Workshop, UNM Writers Conference, Women Writing the West national conference, and Tony Hillerman Writers Conference.
Sue Boggio lives in Albuquerque, NM with her husband. Mare Pearl lives in Bosque Farms, NM with her husband.