The Official Biography
LeAnne Howe is an enrolled citizen of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. She writes fiction, poetry, screenplays, creative non-fiction, plays and scholarship that primarily deal with American Indian and Native American experiences. Her short fiction has appeared in Fiction International, Callaloo, Story, Yalobusha Review, and Cimarron Review, and elsewhere, and has been translated in France, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, and Denmark. She has held residencies at the MacDowell Colony, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Ragdale Writers Residency, and the Atlantic Center for the Arts.
Her first novel Shell Shaker (Aunt Lute Books, 2001) received an American Book Award in 2002 from the Before Columbus Foundation. The novel was a finalist for the 2003 Oklahoma Book Award, and awarded Wordcraft Circle Writer of the Year, 2002. Equinoxes Rouge, the French translation, was the 2004 finalist for Prix Medici Estranger, one of France’s top literary awards. Evidence of Red (Salt Publishing, UK, 2005) won the Oklahoma Book Award for poetry in 2006, and the Wordcraft Circle Award for 2006. Her most recent novel is Miko Kings: An Indian Baseball Story (Aunt Lute Books, 2007).
In Spring 2003, she was the Louis D. Rubins Jr. Writer-in-Residence at Hollins University, VA. She has received an Artist-in-Residence grant for theater from the Iowa Arts Council. In 2004 she was the Regents Distinguished Lecturer at University of California, Riverside. In 2006-2007 she was the John and Renee Grisham Writer-in-Residence at the University of Mississippi at Oxford, MS.
LeAnne is the screenwriter and on-camera narrator for the 90-minute PBS documentary Indian Country Diaries: Spiral of Fire that aired nationally in 2006. Part memoir, part tribal history the film takes Howe (Choctaw) to the North Carolina homelands of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians to discover how their fusion of tourism, community, and cultural preservation is the key to the tribe’s health in the twenty-first century. Along the way Howe seeks to reconcile her own identity as the daughter of a Cherokee father she never knew.
She is writer/co-producer of the documentary “Playing Pastime: American Indian Fast-Pitch Softball,” and “Survival,” with three-time Emmy award winner filmmaker, James Fortier. The short documentary will soon be available on YouTube.
LeAnne has read her fiction and been an invited lecturer in Japan, Jordan, Israel, Romania, and Spain. Founder and director of WagonBurner Theatre Troop her plays have been produced in Los Angeles, New York City, New Mexico, Maine, Texas, and Colorado. Her most recent one-act play, The Mascot Opera, A Minuet is part of a production at Mixed Blood Theater in 2008 in Minneapolis. She is currently at work on a one-woman show titled “Choctalking on Other Realities” for the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, January 09. Her most recent scholarship: “Blind Bread and the Business of Theorymaking By Embarrassed Grief as Told by LeAnne Howe” appears in Reasoning Together: Native Critics Collective, University of Oklahoma Press, Spring 2008.