MFA in Writing for Children & Young Adults

Kirby Larson / Visiting Writer

Kirby Larson

Kirby Larson is the acclaimed author of the 2007 Newbery Honor Book Hattie Big Sky, a young adult historical novel she wrote inspired by her great-grandmother, Hattie Inez Brooks Wright, who homesteaded by herself in eastern Montana as a young woman. 

That book, and encouragement from her mentor, Karen Cushman, gave Kirby the confidence to embrace her passion for historical fiction; in 2015, her book Dash won the Scott O’Dell Historical Fiction Prize.

In 2006, Kirby began a collaboration with her good friend, Mary Nethery, which has produced two award-winning nonfiction picture books: Two Bobbies: A True Story of Hurricane Katrina, Friendship and Survival (illustrated by Jean Cassels) and Nubs: The True Story of a Mutt, a Marine and a Miracle. They think three’s a lucky number so have their eyes peeled for another project to tackle together.

A frequent speaker, Kirby enjoys sharing her passion for research, reading and writing. She has presented at more than 200 schools, workshops, and seminars in over twenty states and as far away as Qatar, Lebanon and Guam. Her passport is up to date and she’s ready for her next adventure!

Kirby lives in Kenmore, Washington with her husband, Neil. When she’s not reading or writing, Kirby can be found beachcombing or bird watching with Winston the Wonder Dog.