A native of rural West Virginia, Nora Shalaway Carpenter is a full-time writer living in the mountains of North Carolina. Her young adult novels and anthologies have been named "Best of the Year" by NPR, Kirkus Reviews, Bank Street Books, and A Mighty Girl, and have won accolades including the Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection, the Whippoorwill Award for authentic rural fiction. and the Nautilus Award championing "better books for a better world." Nora holds an MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts and serves as faculty for the Highlights Foundation's Whole Novel Workshop and Intro to Short Fiction class.
Nora's novels weave in social justice themes because as people living in the world, these themes impact all of us. With her books, she aims to provide great stories while also provoking deep and critical thought about those themes.
Similarly, as an anthologist, she prefers to curate stories centered around social justice concerns, ie human concerns, with the specific goals of highlighting diverse viewpoints and introducing new, emerging voices alongside established, award-winning authors.
Nora Shalaway Carpenter is the contributing editor of the critically acclaimed YA short story anthology Rural Voices: 15 Authors Challenge Assumptions About Small-Town America, which was named an NPR Best Book of the Year, A YALSA Best Fiction YA selection, a TAYSHAS list selection, and a Bank Street Best Book of the Year, among numerous other honors. Her debut YA novel The Edge of Anything was named a Bank Street Best Book, a Kirkus Reviews Best book, and A Mighty Girl Best Book of the Year. Her next anthology, Ab(solutely) Normal, is forthcoming from Candlewick and her next novel, Fault Lines, is forthcoming from Running Press Teen. She holds an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts. Connect with her at noracarpenterwrites.com, on TikTok @norashalawaycarpenter, or on Instagram @noracarpenterwrites.