Annie Dillard Biography
(1945– ), Tickets for a Prayerwheel, Pilgrim at Tinker's Creek, Teaching a Stone to Talk
American writer, born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, educated at Hollins College. Her first published work was a volume of poems, Tickets for a Prayerwheel (1974), but it was Pilgrim at Tinker's Creek (1974), her first work of prose—an extended meditation on nature—that established her reputation as a fine and original stylist, and gained her a Pulitzer Prize. Since then, Dillard has written a variety of prose works, including Teaching a Stone to Talk (1982), essays on nature and religion; Living by Fiction (1982), studies of such seminal writers as Nabokov, Calvino, and Borges; an An American Childhood (1987), a partial autobiography, one of her most successful attempts to carve a new narrative form for herself which she has described as creative non-fiction. Her efforts to grapple with the meaning of creativity are detailed in the linked essays of The Writing Life (1989). Dillard turned to fiction with The Living (1992), a novel set in the late nineteenth century, about the experiences of frontier settlers in the American North West.