NORWAY — Maine author and playwright Monica Wood spoke to a sold-out crowd after the recent performance of her play “Papermaker” at Norway Grange 45.

“This is where this play is meant to be performed,” she said, after being welcomed to the stage by the play’s director, Julie Middleton, and the cast of “Papermaker.” “In western Maine and in a grange hall!”

Wood’s play is based on her novel, “Ernie’s Ark,” which was published in 2002. “The themes of talking across the table are as relevant today,” Wood commented at the talk-back. Middleton added, “I wanted to bring this play to Norway because I thought it would appeal to folks interested in Maine history, but also to anyone interested in theater because it is a beautiful play mostly about family.”

Members of the audience included OHMPAA supporters as well as a large contingent of papermakers and mill families from surrounding areas and the board of the Livermore Falls Paper and Heritage Museum.

“Papermaker” is set in a fictional Maine paper mill town during a strike in 1989. A union family is struggling in the third month of the strike when the paper company CEO and his daughter unexpectedly show up on their doorstep. There is pressure on all sides but the fully realized characters and a dose of humor fill the play with nostalgia and emotion.

Founded in 1985, OHMPAA is dedicated to presenting quality plays and musicals featuring the talents of local community members. For more information, visit

The director and cast of OHMPAA’s production of “Papermaker” joined playwright Monica Wood for a “talk-back” following a performance. From left are August Thornton, Michael Newsom, director Julie Middleton, playwright Monica Wood, Daniel Rennie, Sandra Fickett and Laurie Riihimaki.

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