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Win-E-Mac student's book is published

Chris Mahr will close one chapter of life when he graduates this spring from Win-E-Mac Public School in Erskine.

But the 18-year-old has already opened another with the publishing of his very own book. PublishAmerica released the science fiction novel, "The Face on Mars," in December.

Mahr will sign copies of his novel from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday at B. Dalton at Paul Bunyan Mall. The novel, which costs $21.95, will be available for purchase at the book signing. It is also available to buy on

In Mahr's novel, mankind inhabits Mars with more than a thousand cities nearly 300 years into the future. After settling in, the newcomers discover they are not alone.

When the planet's first inhabitants, the Achetans, return after a long journey, they find it invaded and war ensues.

Mahr, who lives in Lengby and Eden Prairie, Minn., with his parents, Dan and Ruth Mahr, wrote the novel during the past three years.

"I started when I was 15," Mahr said.

He said he became interested in writing in school.

"I just started writing for English class -- little short stories -- and I just enjoyed it so much," he said.

Mahr submitted "The Face on Mars" online to PublishAmerica last year. Two days later, the publishing company replied with interest.

Six months after signing the contract, his novel was published. For Mahr, the publishing process included editing and deadlines. And, he said, all the hard work has paid off.

"It just kind of built up, and six months later, I was holding my book," Mahr said.

He said it's cool to sit back and look at the finished product, though he's not stopping there.

"I'm working on the sequel," he said.

Mahr said he doesn't write only science fiction. He also wrote a shorter novel, "Change by Fate," that he has not yet submitted for publication. The novel tells the story of a teenager and his dad who have a shaky relationship and get lost in the woods after a plane crash.

Mahr, who plans to attend college after high school, said he wants to become an English teacher. Meanwhile, he plans to hold book signings this summer in the Twin Cities to promote "The Face on Mars."

Readers of his novel are welcome to share their reviews with Mahr at

"The book just has something for everyone," Mahr said.