About Naomi Benaron

I am a fiction writer and a poet. My short story collection, Love Letters from a Fat Man, won the 2006 Sharat Chandra Prize for Fiction. My short stories and poems have appeared in Hayden's Ferry Review, JewishFiction.net, Spillway Journal, Blast Furnace, and Prime Number. I have an MFA in fiction from Antioch University Los Angeles.

I teach through the UCLA Extension Writers' Program and I mentor Afghan women through AWWP, the Afghan Women's Writing Project—an online group where Afghan women can express themselves in safety and in freedom.

My first career was as a scientist. For many years, I worked as a seismologist and geophysicist for companies including Mobil Oil and a consulting company for JPL. I spoke computer until the languages got away from me. I have degrees from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Scripps Institution of Oceanography. I have never been cured of my love for rocks and waves—seismic, light, or oceanic. Like light, I consider myself both particle and wave.

I am a dog human. I have a Walker Hound named Scout and a Queensland Heeler named JillyRoo. They own me. Give me two minutes, and I'll show you their pictures. Yes—they're on my phone. No—their bark is not my ringtone.

I am a marathon runner and an Ironman triathlete. Speed is a thing of the past, but I still train. I will always train; it's in my blood as much as eating, breathing, writing. My best lines come to me when I am in motion. I will never win the Boston Marathon, but if I can run it one more time, I will be happy. I grew up 2 miles from mile 16 on the marathon course. We used to watch when I was young; I didn't realize those runners were human. I never dreamed I would run it one day, my father standing probably on our old footsteps yelling, "That's my daughter! Look at her go!"

I wish they could see me now, my mother and my father. They'd be saying that same thing: "That's my daughter! Look at her go!"