Local author tours 1000 Islands region after releasing novels during pandemic


WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWTI) — After releasing two historical fiction novels in the past year, a local author has returned to the place that inspires her most.

Susan Mathis currently lives in Colorado Springs, but is originally from Watertown, New York and spent many childhood summers on the St. Lawrence River.

Every year she returns to the North Country to connect with readers, friends and family along the St. Lawrence River for a book tour.

Although she has been doing annual book tours for five years, she shared how this year’s tour was special after COVID-19.

“I loved meeting my friends, my fans and readers that are hearing about [the books] for the first time and getting all excited because all my books are about the river and their historical fiction,” said Mathis.

After writing non fiction for years, she turned a corner in her professional career and began writing historical fiction stories on the 1000 Islands. This first, loosely based on her family’s ties to the region.

Now, she has published seven books, with two additional titles in the works.

The River, she said, is what keeps her writing, as she believes it holds countless stories that “must be preserved.”

“There are so many historical stories up here. I mean, the places and the history is so rich. It’s so taken for granted and if we don’t write about it, we’ll lose it. Eventually the buildings will rot or burn and then we won’t have them,” expressed Mathis.

And, discussing the aspect connects Mathis with her readers nationwide, she focused on how the River continues to inspire her even when she is thousands of miles away.

“It just reignites the love for the river. You know, it’s when you see it with new eyes and from people who have never experienced it before, it’s just a beautiful thing,” she concluded.

Susan Mathis will release her newest title in May 2022. This will be the third book of her Thousand Islands Gilded Age Series.

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