Ho-Chunk author Chandler creates new book, ‘Running to Never’

By Ken Luchterhand

When Larinna Chandler was a child, growing up in the Black River Falls area, she would fill her creative cravings by writing on paper plates.
By the time she was 8, her teachers in school would lecture her about plagiarism because her writings were so advanced beyond what other children were writing, they concluded there was no way she actually wrote those words, sentences and paragraphs.
“I was writing way over my age,” Larinna said. “At that time, I was reading adult-level books, like Louis L’ Amour.”
Now that she is an adult, she uses that creative writing energy to craft books for publication. Larinna is a proud Ho-Chunk tribal member and she works for the Ho-Chunk Food Distribution Program in Black River Falls.
“Running to Never,” her third work, has just been released on ebook and soon will be available in paperback. She is working to get the book made into a movie.
It is the story of a little girl, Eva, and a Nazi officer, Josef Roehm, during World War II.
The setting is 1943, Poland, when Eva and her mother, Hanna, are placed as prisoners into the Majdanek Concentration Camp in Lublin, Poland.
Through bravery and a lot of luck, Hanna and Eva have survived the ordeal, that is, with the help of a very selfish officer. Yet, Eva grows weaker by the day and rumors swirl that Allied forces are still years away. Hanna doesn’t have years to wait for rescue, she has weeks at best to escape and save her daughter’s life.

Josef Roehm is appointed second in command at Majdanek. He had heard of the concentration camps before, of course, but now he was to run one. Josef is forced to hide his shame at his country behind a mantle of arrogance and indifference. When he is called to issue a punishment to a young woman for trying to escape, he simply can’t do it.
To show his weakness however, would be treason. In an act of compassion, Josef hides the small child in his home. With the help of the most unlikely ally, he has a plan to escape with the small child, but first he must gain the mother’s trust without letting anyone, including her, know of Eva’s fate. He made a promise to a solemn little girl.

The ebook has been selling on sites such as Amazon.com. So far, the response has been astounding, Larinna said. Positive reviews have been posted and people have been contacting Larinna with praise.
However, when she was in elementary school, her writings were not always accepted. Her teachers often discouraged her from writing, except for a few teachers who gave their full support, such as the encouragement from Mrs. Windsor and Mrs. Bishop.
“They believed in me,” she said.
While Larinna was going through struggles of adolescence, she turned to writing poetry as a means of expressing herself.
She became discouraged about writing for a few years, but returned to the craft stronger than ever when she became an adult. Dabbling in poetry, she found the art form a release of her emotions.
In 2001, she attended two poetry conventions, in Los Angeles and Washington D.C., but then received the inspiration to begin writing a book.
“I finally figured out how to put it together. It was a constant struggle,” she said. “I received my biggest support from my husband, Curtis.”
Larinna was published in many poetry anthologies and has won the Poet of the year several times from poetry.com. She also has many editorials, articles and random bits of fiction spread across the internet.
Larinna spent several years working as a reporter for the Blair Press. She has been a first responder and a security guard. She worked as a valet attendant and as a gas station cashier.
She has written “Murray and Angel: Unfenced,” and “Fairelle and the Palace of the Gods.”
Her first book, “Murray and Angel Unfenced: The secret of life,” was released on May 25, 2016. The story about a goat who is a standard run-of-the-mill dairy goat. No fancy pedigrees. After watching humans go about their daily lives, Murray realizes that goats are superior creatures and really do know how to be happy.
His loyal wife, Angel, attempts to keep Murray from his wandering attention span and on the straight and narrow. Murray escapes the confines of his pen and writes his first book of three.
Larinna’ s second book, Her second book, “Fairelle and the Palace of the Gods,” is a short story. The main characters, Fairelle and Razari, have survived the beasts that roam the world of the Gods. They have even escaped being noticed by the Gods themselves. They are set to live happily ever after, that is, until they find out who they really are.
Having completed and published those two works, Larinna began thinking about her next writing. Her husband tried to calm her fears.
“‘Your next book is going to pick you, you aren’t going to pick it,’ he told me,” Larinna said.
Then, it did. Curtis was watching Youtube videos and Larinna was eating in the kitchen when a thought suddenly struck her.
“’I got it,” I yelled. I ran over to the computer and wrote down the basic idea for the story. Later, I wrote the first chapter for the book on my phone while I was working at the cranberry marsh,” she said.
“I did a huge amount of research: people, places, dates, and actions – what causes a Nazi to be torn between duty and his own conscience,” she said. In here story, the main character is conflicted between the Nazi soldier he is supposed to be and the compassionate person he really is.
He had to present a stern and nasty front so that other Nazi officers wouldn’t see the tenderness inside him.
The story is an example of what Larinna likes to develop, which is human interaction and how people can change for the better.
She researched how, during World War II, real Nazi soldiers and officers risked their lives by going against policy and orders to help people in distress.
“I spent hundreds of hours looking into witness accounts,” she said. “It’s a horrible time in history and people did so much, but couldn’t tell anyone. I like to deal more of the human aspects.”
Now that Larinna has finished and published “Running to Never,” she has already started to write her next book, which is story involving time travel.
“A faction of the government transports a family from 1851 to modern-day Jackson County. It’s fictional, but it involves traits of present-day people,” she said.
For her inspiration, she attributes a lot of her creativity to her friends. She hangs out with a diverse group of people from all types of backgrounds and viewpoints, who also support her works.
“They’re a wonderful crew of people – a very eclectic group,” she said. “I couldn’t ask for anything more.”
Her writing is the essence of her life and she uses it to fulfill her creative needs. Besides her book crafting and Facebook posts, and her website, she maintains a blog online to express her daily thoughts and expressions of wordiness. She has 1,083 followers on her blog.
“It’s a good, creative outlet and a way for people to find my work,” she said.
Larinna does receive fan mail and she makes every attempt to respond to every message she receives.
“It affects me so much and it makes me feel good, but, yes, I try to be humble,” she said, then laughed. “Curt is pretty quick to remind me if I get too full of myself.”
She owes a lot of her success to a higher being.
“I’m thankful the Creator has given me gifts I can share.”