Jane and Paul Annixter (Jane and Howard Sturtzel), though married in 1920 and both writers, did not join forces as a writing team until 1954—at which time they took on their pseudonym of Jane and Paul Annixter. Jane, the daughter of novelist and essayist Will Levington, had done a lot of writing since childhood, as had her husband, whose serious writing had begun at the age of 19. After many years of being publishing under their own names, there came a moment when the couple felt the need for fresh direction in their work—which led to their career as co-authors of books for young people.
The couple spent that first year at an altitude of 7,000 feet in the San Bernardino Mountains, in a one-room cabin with a large picture window opening up on a view of seven lesser peaks before dropping down to the Mojave Desert—a stirring inspiration for their subsequent series of stories with historical and nature-related themes. Of this partnership, Howard writes: “Each collaborator is doubled by the other through added zeal and the magic of innovation and the bringing together of opposite angles of thought. Where one may have a weakness the other is apt to have strength.” Jane’s words on the couples’ joint venture: “Writing together increases the dynamics of both. Work is steadier, for if one flags, the other urges him on.” Howard Sturtzel died in 1985 and Jane Sturtzel in 1996.
They are authors of the book Windigo: A Wildernes Story of Fear and Courage.