Born: October 25, 1972
Died: February 15, 2019
Ohio connection: Former Resident
Ellis Avery grew up in Columbus, attending the Columbus School for Girls until the age of eleven, when her family moved to New Jersey. Avery is the author of two novels, a memoir and a book of poetry. Her novels, and her work has been translated into six languages. She teaches fiction writing at Columbia University and previously served as a lecturer in the Department of English at the University of California, Berkeley. Avery’s work has also appeared on stage at New York’s Expanded Arts Theater and in print in Publishers Weekly, Kyoto Journal, and The Village Voice. In 2001, Three Lines, One Road, a year’s worth of daily haiku exchanged between Avery and Melissa Demian, was a finalist in the National Poetry Series.
Citation from Writer’s Notes Book Awards for The Smoke Week. The Teahouse Fire was named a Kiriyama Prize Notable Book in 2006 and a Booksense pick for January 2007. Avery received Ohioana‘s 2002 Walter Rumsey Marvin grant; 2007 Ohioana Book Award for Fiction for The Teahouse Fire; 2008 Stonewall Book Award for The Teahouse Fire; 2013 Stonewall Book Award for The Last Nude. Avery’s novels have also received Lambda and Golden Crown awards.