Mary Meigs Born in Philadelphia, writer and painter Mary Meigs wrote her first novel, Lily Briscoe: A Self-Portrait, at the age of 60. For the next two decades, Meigs chronicled her extraordinary life as a writer, a painter, an actress, a social activist and a lesbian feminist. In 1988, Meigs played herself in the critically acclaimed film The Company of Strangers (U.S. release title: Strangers in Good Company; French title: Le Fabuleux gang des sept ), about eight women on a bus tour who are stranded in isolated countryside when the bus breaks down. In the Company of Strangers (1991) followed, a fascinating work documenting her experience during the production of the film. Mary Meigs died in 2002 at the age of 85, shortly before the completion of Beyond Recall.