Elizabeth Strout won the 2009 Pulitzer Prize for fiction with her short story collection, Olive Kitteridge, which was also a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award for fiction. Composed of thirteen stories linked through the title character, Olive Kitteridge is a perceptive and wise portrait that speaks to the power of human connection. “Strout animates the ordinary with an astonishing force,” wrote The New Yorker. “Fiction lovers, remember this name: Olive Kitteridge,” said USA Today. You’ll never forget her. . . . Glorious, powerful stuff.”
A Bates College graduate, Elizabeth Strout grew up in small towns in Maine and New Hampshire. When she was a child, her mother bought her notebooks and encouraged her to record the everyday things that happened to her, which she loved to do. This shaped her writing, but it was only later, when Strout moved to New York as a writer, that she recognized the impact upon her work of the New England settings of her childhood and the great human dramas that reside in the ordinary.
Her first novel, Amy and Isabelle, won the Los Angeles Times Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction and the Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize, and was a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award and for the Orange Prize in England. Her second novel, Abide with Me, was a national bestseller and a Book Sense pick. Her short stories have been published in a number of magazines, including The New Yorker and O: The Oprah Magazine.
Elizabeth Strout is on the faculty of the MFA program at a University in North Carolina, and has lectured at literary series and universities across the country.