Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Little Heroes: Nora Pierce

I met Nora Pierce at a faculty reading at Stanford, where she read from her recent novel, The Insufficiency of Maps

What drew me to her was her confidence. She had the aura of someone who has walked, struggled and marched forth to achieve her goal. I hope her story inspires you just as it has inspired me.

Pierce was a Wallace Stegner Fellow at Stanford University and before that, a Rosenthal fellow in the PEN Center Emerging Voices Program. She is a writer with no advanced degree in creative writing or English, rather she is self-taught and persisted in creating a life that supported writing. 

Her persistence has certainly paid off.

After PEN, she joined the Squaw Valley Community of Writers for a week long workshop, shortly after accepted a Stegner Fellowship, continued perfecting her craft as a writer-in-residence at the Headlands Center for the Arts, and is currently in residence at La Cite Internationale des Arts in Paris. Pierce has won numerous awards for her fiction, including grants from the Maryland State Arts Council. 

Her short story, "A Safe and Infinite Silence" was awarded a Steinbeck Fiction Award in 2001. Her fiction, essays, and articles have appeared in the Baltimore Sun, Travel Magazine, Hampton Shorts, SOMA, Sojourner, and many other publications. Pierce received a BA in writing and literature from the Intercultural Studies Program, Southampton College, Southampton, NY.

Read some of her stories >>

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