You've heard of William Saroyan (we have a theater named after him here in downtown), and probably Gary Soto, and maybe even Juan Felipe Herrera (he's our national poet laureate). Did you know they're all Fresno folks? Yes, they are also all prolific writers - hurray for Califoria Writers Week!
You may also have heard of Doris Gates - the Central location of the Fresno County Public Library has a children's room named after her. She used to work there, and write on her days off - she was a librarian AND a local writer! Her most lasting work is Blue Willow, set during the Dust Bowl migration into California, but she wrote many more titles. Most of them are sadly out of print.
A local writer whose work is not out of print is Chris Colfer. You may know him better as the author of the Land of Stories Series - the fourth book, Beyond the Kingdoms, just came out. He's young, so we can hope for lots more from him.
Margarita Engle is an award-winning local writer with beautiful fiction and nonfiction, poetry and prose. Her Enchanted Air: Two Cultures, Two Wings: a Memoir makes me feel like I've lived (for a few moments) as a beloved child in Cuba as well as in California.
Of course, our own Dorina Lazo Gilmore, mother of two Kepler kids, is a writer as well, with Cora Cooks Pancit as her most recent work. Sarah Torna Roberts, mother of four Kepler kids, is also a writer. She has had a blog for some time, and recently began writing for the Washington Post. Her most recent article tackles having uncomfortable but important conversations with your kids.
These are only a handful of the great writers working in and around Fresno - California Writers Week should have one day just for the Central Valley!
Full disclosure: None of these authors (except the Kepler folk) know me, and none of them are in any way influencing me to talk about their writing, nor does anyone know me at Booksource or Amazon, the vendors whose links are in this post. Buy these books or others (or borrow them while you're deciding whether you like them enough to buy them) from anyone you like.
Always up for book chats, reading, library memes - proud to be Kepler's first librarian