Authors and Contributors

Gretel Ehrlich - Essayist

Gretel Ehrlich
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Gretel Ehrlich was born on a horse ranch near Santa Barbara, California, and was educated at Bennington College and UCLA film school. She worked in film for ten years and began writing full time in 1978 after the death of a loved one. She had been filming on a 250,000-acre sheep and cattle ranch in northern Wyoming at the time-and there she stayed. The book that resulted was The Solace of Open Spaces, which won the Harold D. Vurcell Award for Distinguished Prose from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.


Her twelve subsequent books—including a memoir penned in 1994 after she was struck by lightning—have been published to critical acclaim. Ehrlich’s essays, short stories, and poems have been included in many anthologies, including Best Essays of the Century, Best American Essays, Best Spiritual Writing, Best Travel Writing, and The Nature Reader. Her work has also been published in Harper’s, The Atlantic, The New York Times Magazine, The New York Times op-ed page, The Washington Post, Time Magazine, Life, National Geographic Adventure, National Geographic Traveler, Outside, Audubon, Anteaus, Architectural Digest, and the Shambala Sun, among many others.

Her awards include a National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing Fellowship, a National Endowment for the Humanities grant, a Whiting Foundation Award, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. In 1991, she collaborated with British choreographer Siobhan Davies on a ballet that opened in London’s South Bank Theatre.

Ehrlich divides her time between Calfiornia and Wyoming.

Gretel Ehrlich is an essayist for Planet Ice (Braided River, 2009). For more on her work, click here.