Shelley Fraser Mickle fell in love with stories when she was five. She began writing her first novel in third grade; it was almost all dialogue between a dog and a bird about the dog’s desire to sing! In elementary school, she began a series of novels about pioneers who sat on hardwood benches and ate mush.
For many years, she wrote short stories that appeared in literary magazines. While raising young children, she wove those stories into a novel, which ballooned to some 600 pages. That manuscript eventually became (after 3 years) The Queen of October, which received a full page illustrated review in the New York Times and was listed as one of their Notable Books of 1989. It was also listed by Library Journal as one of the best adult novels of the year suitable for young adults. It still is read by book clubs and enjoys a continuing life in print. Her second novel, Replacing Dad, a bittersweet divorce comedy, was selected for an award from American Writers in Chicago. When actress Mary McDonnell read it, it was developed into a CBS film, airing March 1999.
Shelley’s other adult novels include The Turning Hour (adapted for a public school suicide prevention program in Alachua County, Florida), The Assigned Visit, and The Occupation of Eliza Goode. Her books for children include American Pharaoh: Triple Crown Champion and Bank Street Award winner Barbaro: America’s Horse. She has also been a commentator for NPR’s “Morning Edition.” Shelley lives in Gainesville, Florida, with her husband.
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