Ellen was born in Mississippi and has lived all over the American South. She was a lawyer in Mississippi for two decades when judges still called her “Miss Ellen.” When she turned to writing, her first book introduced a new form of active prayer using broken and found objects to make crosses. The stories in her award-winning audio short story collection have been downloaded over 50,000 times worldwide. For eight years, she facilitated a weekly writing group of men and women experiencing homelessness culminating in the group’s memoir, which she edited. She divides her time between New Orleans and the Mississippi Gulf Coast.
Ellen’s work has twice been nominated for a Pushcart Prize; a short story received a Special Mention. She was the Peter Taylor Fellow in Nonfiction at the Kenyon College Summer Writing Program. Her essay “Tetanus, You Understand?” was included in Fearless Confessions: A Writer’s Guide to Memoir by Sue Silverman (University of Georgia Press, 2009) as an example of metaphor.Her essays and short stories have appeared in Hotel Amerika, Brevity, Image, Alaska Quarterly Review, River Teeth, Texas Review, Gulf Coast, Barrelhouse, EAP the Magazine, Fourth Genre, Arkansas Review, and elsewhere.
Ellen’s current project is the novel, In the Name of Mississippi, which was a Semi-finalist (25/600) in the James Jones First Novel Competition.
In this Southern mystery, fashion model Vangie Street must use her “clothes whisperer” intuition to puzzle out the truth of what’s going on….and keep her own self out of trouble.
ove is connecting with the man in the maroon Bonneville who killed your Big Naked Guy. Love is responding to grief by inviting the Devil into your home. Love is finding yourself sitting Zen in an Elk’s Lodge. Love is learning your mom is boinking a dude in a squirrel costume. Love is…