January 21, 1946 |
Santa Barbara, California, U.S.
|Notable works||This Cold Heaven|
|Notable awards||Whiting Award
Henry David Thoreau Prize
Born in 1946 in Santa Barbara, California, she studied at Bennington College and UCLA film school. She began to write full-time in 1978, living on a Wyoming ranch, after the death of a loved one. Ehrlich debuted in 1985 with The Solace of Open Spaces, a collection of essays on rural life in Wyoming. Her first novel, also set in Wyoming, was Heart Mountain (1988), about a community being invaded by an internment camp for Japanese Americans.
One of Ehrlich's most beloved books is a volume of creative nonfiction essays called Islands, The Universe, Home. Her characteristic style of merging intense, vivid factual observations of nature with a wryly mystical personal voice is evident in this text. Other books include This Cold Heaven: Seven Seasons in Greenland and two volumes of poetry.
In 1991 Ehrlich was hit by lightning. She was incapacitated for several years, and she wrote a book about the experience, A Match to the Heart, which was published in 1994. Since 1993, she has traveled extensively, especially through Greenland and western China.
Her work is frequently anthologised, including The Nature Reader. She has received many grants. In 1991, she collaborated with British choreographer Siobhan Davies, writing and recording a poem cycle for a ballet that opened in the Southbank Centre in London.
- To Touch the Water, Ahsahta Press, 1981, ISBN 978-0-916272-16-6
- The Solace of Open Spaces, Viking Press, 1985, ISBN 978-0-670-80678-2
- Heart Mountain, Viking Press, 1988, ISBN 978-0-670-82160-0
- Drinking Dry Clouds: Stories from Wyoming, Capra Press, 1991, ISBN 978-0-88496-315-8
- Islands, the Universe, Home, Viking Press, 1991, ISBN 978-0-670-82161-7
- Arctic Heart: A Poem Cycle, Capra Press, 1992, ISBN 978-0-88496-357-8
- A Match to the Heart: One Woman's Story of Being Struck by Lightning, Pantheon Books, 1994, ISBN 978-0-679-42550-2
- John Muir: Nature's Visionary,National Geographic Society, 2000, ISBN 978-0-7922-7954-9
- This Cold Heaven: Seven Seasons in Greenland, Pantheon Books, 2001, ISBN 978-0-679-44200-4
- The Future of Ice: A Journey Into Cold, Pantheon Books, 2004, ISBN 978-0-375-42251-5
- In the Empire of Ice: Encounters in a Changing Landscape, National Geographic Society, 2010, ISBN 978-1-4262-0574-3
- Facing the Wave: A Journey in the Wake of the Tsunami, Pantheon, 2013, ISBN 978-0-307-90731-8
- PEN New England - Henry David Thoreau Prize for Literary Excellence in Nature Writing
- Library Thing
- The Archive of Siobhan Davies Dance - Arctic Heart Archived 2015-11-19 at the Wayback Machine.. Retrieved on 18 November 2015.
- Mussoorie Writers - Gretel Ehrlich Archived 2015-11-19 at the Wayback Machine.. Retrieved on 18 November 2015.
- Braided River: Gretel Ehrlich - Essayist. Retrieved on 18 November 2015.