Marion wanted to be a writer from an early age. As a child, she says, "I constantly made [stories] up in my head, for my dolls, for my friends. I acted them out using my cigar box filled with marbles as characters." An aunt gave her vital encouragement during her teenage years, by taking her work seriously and urging her to continue writing. Bauer recalls that "the example of someone who loved writing and found doing it both good and important, probably influenced me more deeply than any other."