About Me

My unique background sets the stage for students' success.
Kathleen McCleary

Writer, Reporter, Editor and Author

I majored in comparative religion at Williams College in Williamstown, Mass. (The essay question on my college application: “Write about an experience that has helped you define or discern a value that you hold.”) After graduation I went to law school, which was very instructive in helping me understand how much I did not want to be a lawyer. I left law school and found an entry-level job with a magazine in New York City, and have worked as a writer, reporter, editor, and author ever since.

My first novel, House and Home (Hyperion), was published in 2008, and my latest novel, Leaving Haven (HarperCollins 2013), was featured in Costco and is a Target Emerging Author pick. My second novel, A Simple Thing (HarperCollins, 2012), was nominated for a Library of Virginia Literary award (for more info about my fiction, please visit www.kathleenmccleary.com). I’ve written articles for The New York Times, The Washington Post, Ladies Home Journal, Good Housekeeping, and More, as well as for HGTV.com, where I was a regular columnist. I’ve also worked as a staff editor and writer for several major publishing companies, including Fairchild and Gannett. I’ve interviewed all kinds of people, from politicians (Al Gore) to sports celebrities (Michael Jordan, Cal Ripken, Jr.) to actors (Robert Duvall, Arnold Schwarzenegger) to ordinary heroes (Chris Fields, the Oklahoma City firefighter who carried a toddler out of the wreckage of the Murrah Federal Building).

When I’m not writing I teach writing. I have taught as an adjunct professor at American University and with Writopia Labs, a non-profit that teaches creative writing to kids. I’ve also coached Odyssey of the Mind teams, and managed the Odyssey of the Mind program at my local elementary school.

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