Maura Conlon-McIvor grew up 12 miles from Disneyland and 32 miles from Hollywood, at the intersection of California’s global storytelling and entertainment industries. The daughter of a stoic, Irish-American, Hoover-era FBI agent and a bathing beauty mother who revered witty comedy and talk shows, she became enchanted by people’s stories and beguiled by the secrets adults kept inside.
Maura writes and speaks to the importance of our sense of place in the world. With her family hailing from Ireland and New York City, she gleaned that “home” could mean one place and many places. “Stories were always right around us,” she says, “just as stories could be far afield and at times unreachable.”
Her youngest brother, Joe, was born with Down syndrome (then called Mongoloidism) in the mid-1960s. This made her notice how society assigns people labels that camouflage what her heart knew to be true: that all of us want to love and be loved. That for Maura became the real story.
After a shocking murder in the family, Maura announced, at age 14, her ambition to become a writer. Her childhood days included whispering into her secret tape recorder and hosting mock TV interviews with her siblings. She eventually ventured off to the University of Iowa, Berkeley and then to New York. As a young journalist (who sewed most of her own clothes,) her favorite interviews included those with Pulitzer Prize-winning Alice Walker, author of The Color Purple; broadcaster Vince Scully, who announced games for the L.A. Dodgers for 67 seasons; and USC professor and author Leo Buscaglia, PhD, known as “Dr. Love.”
The author of the Los Angeles Times bestselling memoir, “FBI Girl,” which has been adapted for stage and released in audiobook format, Maura and her work have been critically acclaimed by People, ELLE, Publisher’s Weekly, the Associated Press and other media.
Maura holds an MA from Wake Forest University where she studied the work of Irish poets Eavan Boland and Medbh McGuckian. She also holds a PhD in Depth Psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute in Santa Barbara and consults on the significance of The Depth Memoir™. In her work, Dr. Conlon-McIvor inspires others to find meaning and wisdom through excavating critical events from their life’s first fourteen years.
Maura is represented by the Levine Greenberg Rostan Literary Agency in New York.