American Female Short Story Writers

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 1 
Sylvia Plath
(Famous for Her Books 'The Bell Jar' and 'Ariel')
Sylvia Plath
7
Birthdate: October 27, 1932
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Died: February 11, 1963

Sylvia Plath was an American short-story writer, novelist, and poet. Plath is credited with popularizing confessional poetry and won a posthumous Pulitzer Prize in Poetry. Sylvia Plath achieved popularity and critical acclaim despite suffering from clinical depression for the most part of her adult life. Her story inspired the 2003 film Sylvia in which she was portrayed by Gwyneth Paltrow.

 2 
Louisa May Alcott
5
Birthdate: November 29, 1832
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Germantown, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: March 6, 1888
Novelist and short story writer Louisa May Alcott is best remembered as the author of the 1868 novel Little Women and its sequels, Little Men and Jo's Boys. She initially wrote using the pseudonym “A. M. Barnard.” She never married and remained a life-long feminist and abolitionist.
 3 
Shirley Jackson
7
Birthdate: December 14, 1916
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: San Francisco, California, United States
Died: September 8, 1965
Shirley Jackson redefined the genres of horror and mystery through her works, which include over 200 short stories and six novels. Her iconic novel The Haunting of Hill House was made into a popular Netflix series and several movies, including the 1963 and 1999 versions of The Haunting
 4 
Alice Walker
(The First African-American Woman to Win the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction)
Alice Walker
5
Birthdate: February 9, 1944
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Eatonton, Georgia, United States
Author Alice Walker is best known for her National Book Award- and Pulitzer Prize-winning novel The Color Purple. She is credited with coining the term womanist, to mean feminist of color. Her marriage with Melvyn Roseman Leventhal was the first official interracial marriage in the state of Mississippi.
 5 
Diana Gabaldon
(Author Known for Her 'Outlander' Series of Novels)
Diana Gabaldon
4
Birthdate: January 11, 1952
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Williams, Arizona, United States

Author Diana Gabaldon, daughter of Arizona senator Tony Gabaldon, is best known for her Outlander novel series, which has also been adapted into a TV series. Gabaldon has also authored the Lord John series. She is known for mingling several genres, including historical fiction, mystery, science fiction, and romance.

 6 
Joyce Carol Oates
4
Birthdate: June 16, 1938
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Lockport, New York, United States
 7 
N. K. Jemisin
(Science Fiction and Fantasy Writer Known for Her 'Inheritance' Trilogy)
N. K. Jemisin
4
Birthdate: September 19, 1972
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Iowa City, Iowa, United States

N. K. Jemisin became the first writer to win the Hugo Best Novel award thrice consecutively and is best known for her Inheritance trilogy and her Broken Earth series. The African-American author is also a trained psychologist and has worked as a counsellor in several universities.

 8 
Roxane Gay
(Writer Known for Her 2014 Essay Collection 'Bad Feminist')
Roxane Gay
4
Birthdate: October 15, 1974
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Omaha, Nebraska, United States

Roxane Gay is an American writer, editor, professor, and social commentator. She is credited with founding an Illinois-based small press called Tiny Hardcore Press as well as the now-defunct Gay Magazine, which was founded in association with Medium. Roxane Gay is the recipient of a couple of Lambda Literary Awards and an Eisner Award for Best Limited Series.

 9 
Edith Wharton
5
Birthdate: January 24, 1862
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: New York City
Died: August 11, 1937
 10 
Eudora Welty
(Writer)
Eudora Welty
3
Birthdate: April 13, 1909
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Jackson, Mississippi, United States
Died: July 23, 2001
 11 
Carson McCullers
(American novelist)
Carson McCullers
3
Birthdate: February 19, 1917
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Columbus, Georgia, USA
Died: September 29, 1967
 12 
Patricia Highsmith
5
Birthdate: January 19, 1921
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Fort Worth, Texas, United States
Died: February 4, 1995
 13 
Tabitha King
(Writer)
Tabitha King
5
Birthdate: March 24, 1949
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Old Town, Maine, USA
 14 
Anne Morrow Lindbergh
(Renowned Author & Aviator)
Anne Morrow Lindbergh
4
Birthdate: June 22, 1906
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Englewood, New Jersey
Died: February 7, 2001
 15 
Veronica Roth
(Novelist)
Veronica Roth
4
Birthdate: August 19, 1988
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: New York City, New York, U.S.
 16 
Donna Tartt
(Author)
Donna Tartt
9
Birthdate: December 23, 1963
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Greenwood, Mississippi, United States
 17 
Flannery O'Connor
8
Birthdate: March 25, 1925
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Savannah, Georgia, United States
Died: August 3, 1964
 18 
Katherine Anne Porter
(Journalist, Essayist, Writer, Novelist)
Katherine Anne Porter
3
Birthdate: May 15, 1890
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Indian Creek, Texas, U.S.
Died: September 18, 1980
 19 
Deborah Eisenberg
3
Birthdate: November 20, 1945
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Winnetka, Illinois, United States
 20 
Jhumpa Lahiri
(American Author Best Known for Her Books: ‘Interpreter of Maladies’ and ‘Unaccustomed Earth’)
Jhumpa Lahiri
4
Birthdate: July 11, 1967
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: London, England, United Kingdom
Jhumpa Lahiri is an Indian-American author who mainly writes mostly about the experiences faced by East Indian immigrants and also about their practices and traditions. Recipient of several awards, she received the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and PEN/Hemingway Award for her first publication, Interpreter of Maladies.
 21 
Louise Erdrich
3
Birthdate: June 7, 1954
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Little Falls, Minnesota, US
 22 
Holiday Reinhorn
(Fiction Writer)
Holiday Reinhorn
5
Birthdate: March 12, 1964
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Portland, Oregon

Holiday Reinhorn is the author the bestselling book Big Cats. She has written for various literary magazines such as Zoetrope: All-Story and Gulf Coast. She and her husband, actor Rainn Wilson, both follow the Baháʼí faith. Reinhorn has also co-established a non-profit for Haitian women interested in writing, named Lide.

 23 
Anne Tyler
(Novelist)
Anne Tyler
3
Birthdate: October 25, 1941
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Hennepin County, Minnesota, United States
 24 
Celeste Ng
(Novelist)
Celeste Ng
4
Birthdate: July 30, 1980
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States
 25 
Jennifer Egan
(Novelist)
Jennifer Egan
3
Birthdate: September 7, 1962
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Chicago Chicago, Illinois
 26 
Zhang Ailing
(Writer)
Zhang Ailing
3
Birthdate: September 30, 1920
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Shanghai, China
Died: September 8, 1995
 27 
E. Annie Proulx
(Novelist)
E. Annie Proulx
3
Birthdate: August 22, 1935
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Norwich, Connecticut, United States
 28 
Edwidge Danticat
(Novelist and Short Story Writer Known for Her Books: ‘Breath, Eyes, Memory’, ‘Krik? Krak!’ and ‘Everything Inside’)
Edwidge Danticat
3
Birthdate: January 19, 1969
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Port-au-Prince, Haiti

Apparently, Haitian-American author Edwidge Danticat, known for books such as Breath, Eyes, Memory, had begun writing to escape the bullying she faced because of her Haitian ways after she moved to the U.S. as a young girl. Although her parents wanted her to study medicine, she took up French literature.

 29 
Min Jin Lee
(Novelist)
Min Jin Lee
3
Birthdate: April 18, 1968
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Seoul, South Korea
 30 
Lydia Davis
(Writer)
Lydia Davis
3
Birthdate: July 15, 1947
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Northampton, Massachusetts, United States
 31 
Jane Smiley
(Novelist)
Jane Smiley
3
Birthdate: September 26, 1949
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States
 32 
Sara Paretsky
3
Birthdate: June 8, 1947
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Ames, Iowa, United States
 33 
Caitlín R. Kiernan
(Paleontologist)
Caitlín R. Kiernan
4
Birthdate: May 26, 1964
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Skerries, Ireland

Caitlín R. Kiernan is an Irish-born American author and paleontologist. A two-time winner of both the Bram Stoker and World Fantasy awards, Kiernan has written over 250 short stories and several novels. She has also won several other prestigious awards, such as the International Horror Guild Award, Barnes and Noble Maiden Voyage Award, and James Tiptree, Jr. Award.  

 34 
Leslie Marmon Silko
(American Writer and One of the Key Figures in the First Wave of 'Native American Renaissance')
Leslie Marmon Silko
3
Birthdate: March 5, 1948
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Albuquerque, New Mexico

Leslie Marmon Silko is an American writer who played an important role in the First Wave of the Native American Renaissance. Best known for her essays, short story collections, and poems, Silko was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Native Writers' Circle of the Americas (NWCA) in 1994. In 2020, she won the prestigious Robert Kirsch Award.

 35 
Grace Paley
(Author)
Grace Paley
3
Birthdate: December 11, 1922
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: The Bronx, New York City. United States
Died: August 22, 2007
 36 
Sarah Orne Jewett
3
Birthdate: September 3, 1849
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: South Berwick, Maine, United States
Died: June 24, 1909
 37 
Cynthia Ozick
(Short Story Writer)
Cynthia Ozick
3
Birthdate: April 17, 1928
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
 38 
Dawn Powell
(Author)
Dawn Powell
3
Birthdate: November 28, 1896
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Mount Gilead, Ohio, United States
Died: November 14, 1965
 39 
A.M. Homes
(American author)
A.M. Homes
2
Birthdate: December 18, 1961
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Washington, D.C., United States
 40 
Laura Riding
3
Birthdate: January 16, 1901
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: September 2, 1991
 41 
Shirley Hazzard
(Australian-American Novelist, Short Story Writer, and Essayist Best Known for Her 2003 Novel, 'The Great Fire')
Shirley Hazzard
3
Birthdate: January 30, 1931
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Sydney, Australia
Died: December 12, 2016

Australian-born American author Shirley Hazzard is best known for her Lost Man Booker Prize-shortlisted book The Bay of Noon and the National Book Award-winning The Great Fire. She has also penned various non-fiction volumes on the United Nations, where she had worked as a typist for a decade.

 42 
Fannie Hurst
(Writer)
Fannie Hurst
3
Birthdate: October 18, 1889
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Hamilton, Ohio, United States
Died: February 23, 1968
Alice Dunbar Nelson
2
Birthdate: July 19, 1875
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
Died: September 18, 1935
 44 
Elizabeth Hardwick
(Literary critic)
Elizabeth Hardwick
2
Birthdate: July 27, 1916
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Lexington, Kentucky, United States
Died: December 2, 2007
 45 
Linda Hogan
3
Birthdate: July 16, 1947
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Denver, Colorado, United States
 46 
Tea Obreht
(Novelist)
Tea Obreht
3
Birthdate: September 30, 1985
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Belgrade, Serbia
 47 
Ann Beattie
(Novelist)
Ann Beattie
3
Birthdate: September 8, 1947
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Washington, D.C., United States
 48 
Tess Gallagher
2
Birthdate: July 21, 1943
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Port Angeles, Washington, United States
 49 
Tillie Olsen
(Writer)
Tillie Olsen
2
Birthdate: January 14, 1912
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Wahoo, Nebraska, United States
Died: January 1, 2007
 50 
Jean Stafford
2
Birthdate: July 1, 1915
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Covina, California, United States
Died: March 26, 1979