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<h2 class="nci-h2-featured">Lee Smith is the 10th Zale-Kimmerling Writer-In-Residence (Fall 1994)



Lee Smith was born and raised in the Appalachian mountains of southwestern Virginia. Her work has been greatly influenced by the characters she met and experiences she had there. Smith describes herself as a “deeply weird child” who had an insatiable appetite for books and knowledge. She began writing and selling her stories—for a nickel apiece—to her neighbors when she was only nine. Smith attended Hollins College in Roanoke, VA and, along with fellow student and author Annie Dillard, became go-go dancers for an all-girl rock group, the Virginia Woolfs. During her senior year, she submitted an early draft of her novel to a Book-of-the-Month Club contest, and was awarded a fellowship. Two years later, in 1968, her first novel, The Last Day the Dog Bushes Bloomed, was published. Since then, Smith has published eleven novels, two collections of short stories, and received eight major writing awards.


Mrs. Darcy and the Blue-Eyed Stranger (2010)

On Agate Hill (2006)

The Last Girls (2003)

News of the Spirit (1997)

The Christmas Letters (1996)

Saving Grace (1995)

The Devil's Dream (1992)

Me and My Baby View the Eclipse (1990)

Fair and Tender Ladies (1988)

Family Linen (1985)

Oral History (1983)

Cakewalk (1981)

Black Mountain Breakdown (1980)

The Last Day the Dogbushes Bloomed (1968)


From the Archives

Lee Smith Flyer, 1994




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