© 2023 by Andy Decker. Proudly created with WIX.COM
Developmental and copyediting services are also available by contacting author at marciakgarden@gmail.com

Deep Grass Roots is the 2019 gold-prize winner of the Benjamin Franklin Award in historical fiction by the Independent Book Publishers Association


Available at:

Ingebretsen's Gifts and at Magers and Quinn, Booksellers, Minneapolis

Billy Maple Trees, Milan

Chippewa Co. Historical Society, and Doug's Trimming & Artwork, Montevideo

Jacob's Bakeri & Gifts and at The Owl Bookstore, Osakis

On this site's on-line store, directly from author


Great River Regional Library (GRRL) has this book available to check out


About the book

At the dawn of the twentieth century, two young Norwegian women turn their dreams into reality. Leaving their homes near Watson, Minnesota, Tillie Melbakken and Bertha Harstad make the five-hundred-mile journey to a small settlement in northwestern North Dakota where they file claims on land that appears desolate at first sight, but develops beauty and character as they settle into homestead life in tar paper shacks.

Through joy, sadness, adventure, danger, and tragedy, the author delves deep into the homesteaders' hearts.

Well researched and true to the conditions of the era, Deep Grass Roots is fiction, but the challenges and adventures that confront the homesteaders feel nothing less than real.

Published by Beavers Pond Press, 2018


Available at:

Author's email: marciakgarden@gmail.com or on-line store on this site


Billy Maple Trees, Milan, MN

Ingebretsen's Scandinavian Gifts, Minneapolis

Magers & Quinn, Minneapolis

Chippewa County Historical Society, Montevideo, MN

Rhunestone Museum - Alexandria, MN

Also available through Great River Regional, Pioneerland, and other libraries

About the author

Marcia Neely worked as a public health nurse and administrator during her younger to middle adult life, then joined her husband as co-publisher of the Granite Falls Tribune, a small-town newspaper. After five years of publishing, and following the death of their seventeen-year-old son, the couple purchased five acres of land near Benson Minnesota. Moving down the ladder of success, as defined by society, they discovered a love for an organic lifestyle informed by their natural surroundings.


Marcia was editor of the Civil Liberties News, the publication of the Minnesota Civil Liberties Union in Minneapolis, MN, in the late 1980s and early 1990s. For several years she also edited the Support Report, a publication of SW/WC Educational Cooperative for whom she worked as an educator in the 1990s. While living in the country, she published the Honey and Herbs Newsletter, a publication with essays, stories, and information, and she wrote feature stories for the Swift County Monitor in Benson, Minnesota. She also authored the following two books:


101 Herbs with Essays and Stories and Cooking with Herbs and Spices.

Her novel Deep Grass Roots was published by Beavers Pond Press in 2018. She now lives with her dog Snicklefritz in St. Cloud, Minnesota.

About 101 Herbs


Published by Honey & Herbs Press, 2007


About Cooking with Herbs and Spices

This book begins with a historical and philosophical perspective on the use of culinary herbs and spices.


Cooking with Herbs not only includes 131 recipes, but describes the characteristics of 35 culinary herbs and spices from allspice and basil to thyme and turmeric.


The book provides cooking 

suggestions, medicinal 

qualities of the herbs and spices, and tips on cultivating, harvesting, and preserving herbs.



Published By Prairie Project Press, 2009

Contact and buy

For online sales, click online store in menu at top of site.


Email: Marcia Neely at marciakgarden@gmail.com for direct orders or for information on editing services.

Deep Grass Roots is also available on Amazon.