Mark Childress was born in 1957 in Monroeville, Alabama and grew up in Ohio, Indiana, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Alabama.
Childress is the author of seven novels: "A World Made of Fire" (Knopf, 1984), "V For Victor" (Knopf, 1988) "Tender" (Harmony, 1990), "Crazy in Alabama" (Putnam, 1993), and "Gone for Good," (Knopf, 1988) "One Mississippi," (Little Brown, 2006), and "Georgia Bottoms") (published February 2011 by Little, Brown & Co. His articles and reviews have appeared in The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, The Times of London, San Francisco Chronicle, Saturday Review, Chicago Tribune, Philadelphia Inquirer, Travel and Leisure, and other national and international publications.
After graduation from the University of Alabama in 1978, Childress was a reporter for The Birmingham News, Features Editor of Southern Living magazine, and Regional Editor of The Atlanta Journal and Constitution. He has been writing fiction full time since 1987.
"Tender," a Literary Guild and Doubleday Book Club selection, was named to several Ten Best of 1990 lists, and appeared on many national bestseller lists. "Crazy in Alabama," a featured selection of the Literary Guild, has been published in eleven languages and appeared on many bestseller lists and Ten Best of 1993 lists. Crazy was named The (London) Spectator’s “Book of the Year” for 1993 and a New York Times “Notable Book of the Year,” and was on the Spiegel bestseller list in Germany for 10 months.
"One Mississippi" was a BookSense Notable Book of the Year, nominated for SIBA Book of the Year,and appeared on the "hot summer book" lists of Good Morning America, People, Entertainment Weekly, the Los Angeles Times, Wall Street Journal, O: the Oprah Magazine, and the New York Public Library. The paperback edition is now in its seventh printing.
Childress has received the Thomas Wolfe Award, the University of Alabama’s Distinguished Alumni Award, and the Alabama Library Association’s Writer of the Year. He is a staff member and a director of the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley, California.
Childress has written three picture books for children, "Joshua and Bigtooth," in 1992, "Joshua and the Big Bad Blue Crabs," 1996 (both from Little, Brown), and "Henry Bobbity Is Missing And It Is All Billy Bobbity’s Fault," (Crane Hill Publishers, 1996).
He wrote the screenplay of the Columbia Pictures film "Crazy in Alabama," directed by Antonio Banderas, and starring Melanie Griffith, an official selection of the Venice and San Sebastian film festivals in 1999.
Childress is now working on a new novel and a film project. He lives in Key West, Florida.
Where to find Mark Childress online
Where to buy in print
What It Means to Miss New Orleans
In two short essays and one long piece of reportage, author and screenwriter Mark Childress ("Crazy in Alabama," "One Mississippi," "Georgia Bottoms") explores New Orleans before, during, and after Katrina. Essays: "What It Means to Miss New Orleans," "Disaster Tourism," and "The Tragic City Laughs." All proceeds go to Habitat for Humanity. Approximately 10,000 words, w/ illustrations.
Stephen King: "Mark Childress's novel, TENDER, is a little more than just a fine novel; it is a big, all-American, Technicolor dreamboat of a book, as vital and as intense as anything I've read in the last 10 years. Childress's understanding and love of this new music lends Tender the sort of piney woods authenticity I associate with such American classics as Elmer Gantry and All The King's Men."
V for Victor
Alabama, 1942. The war is everywhere, but Victor - a 16-year-old boy sent by his father to care for his dying grandmother on a lonely island in Mobile Bay - can only dream of it. Then he wakes one amazing night to a thunderous roar from the Bay...and sees the ominous shadow of an enemy submarine surfacing at night. "Fantastic, extravagant...thoroughly charming." -Boston Globe.
Looking for Harper Lee: An Essay
Novelist Mark Childress (Crazy in Alabama, Georgia Bottoms) happened to be born in Monroeville, Alabama--a town Harper Lee called Maycomb when she wrote To Kill a Mockingbird. For years as a journalist, Childress was told to pursue an interview with the reclusive author, who refused all entreaties. This essay describes the importance of her novel to Southern fiction and why Lee remains a mystery.
A World Made of Fire
"Mark Childress is a writer of almost uncanny stylistic ability and clear vision ... makes you want to holler 'oh yeah!' like a guy who's gotten religion at a riverside camp meeting." -- Stephen King
The first novel by the author of "Crazy in Alabama," "One Mississippi," and "Georgia Bottoms," "A World Made of Fire" is a Southern gothic tale rich in language, description, and spooky mysteries...
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