Creative Writing and Literary Arts
Valerie Miner's work has appeared in The Georgia Review, Truiquarterly, Salmagundi, New Letters, Ploughshares, The Village Voice, Prairie Schooner, The Gettysburg Review, Conditions, The TLS, The Women's Review of Books, The Nation, and other journals. Her stories and essays are published in more than sixty anthologies and a number of her pieces have been dramatized on BBC Radio 4. She has won numerous fellowships and awards, including the Distinguished Teaching Award. She travels internationally giving readings, lectures, and workshops.
| ||Traveling with Spirits|
This is a story of deep, abiding friendship, surprising romance, political conspiracy, physical challenge and emotional courage. Monica Murphy quits her Minneapolis medical practice to work at Catholic medical mission in a decaying Indian hill station in Uttar Pradesh. She confronts challenges to her faith, her intentions and about the nature of her contributions.
| ||After Eden|
Looking forward to relief from her job as a city planner in Chicago, Emily Adams begins a much-needed vacation at her Northern California cabin. But the sudden death of her life partner forces her to re-examine personal commitments. Caught up in reflection, she comes to understand the intricacies of life in her pastoral retreat-complexities that she had never before considered.
| ||Winter's Edge|
Chrissie, a waitress, prides herself on her uncompromising approach to life and on her commitment to political activism and feminist. Margaret, clerk in a neighborhood news shop, remains more conventional and less outspoken. A local election for the position of district supervisor pushes Chrissie and Margaret's differences into conflict, threatening their unique friendship. This conflict reaches dynamic climax when Chrissie's activism is met with violence-violence which only Margaret, through a courageous act, can stop.
| ||Abundant Light|
This collection looks closely at definitions of family and asks how this fragile and frightening entity can shape us, nurture us, or even destroy us. These stories also explore friendship as it is enriched by differences in nationality, race, class, and gender. Whether set in Calcutta, Cornwall, Alberta, Edinburgh, or the Coastal Range of California, each story is imbued with a resonant spirit of place. Light is a presence and metaphor in each of these stories, physical light as well as light ranging through human insight and reflection, as characters face the possibilities of forgiveness, acceptance and reunion.
| ||The Night Singers|
In a small New England town a gay man and his lesbian friend explore varieties of sexual intimacy; a brother and sister reunite in Seattle to conduct an idiosyncratic memorial service for their father; a women contemplates the family farm, located in the middle of contemporary San Francisco.
| ||The Low Road: A Scottish Family Memoir|
The Low Road explores location and dislocation in a large, poverty stricken Scottish family. Focusing on the life journeys of her grandmother, her mother, and herself, Miner searches for truth about family members, unveiling family secrets and missing histories. This powerful and moving memoir is a dramatic passage through poverty, immigration, and national and sexual identity.
| ||Range of Light|
Set in the High Sierra of California, Range of Light is a drama of friendship and memory as rich and intricate as the landscape of its setting. Two women are uneasily reunited for a week's hiking after an estrangement of twenty-five years. Each will complete a transforming odyssey in the suffused and brilliant light of the mountains.
| ||A Walking Fire|
"I found this novel utterly engrossing. It is smoothly and powerfully written, politically acute, and humanly relevant. The device of re-writing Shakespeare's King Lear from the point of view of Cordelia, moreover, gives the novel many levels of resonance and invites serious study. I have no doubt that this book will appeal not only to a general novel-reading audience, but also to students and critics of literature." -- Madelon Sprengnether, author, The Spectral Mother.
| ||Rumors from the Cauldron: Selected Essays, Reviews, and Reportage|
A retrospective of the women's movement of the '60s and '70s by a noted feminist novelist and journalist.
| ||Trespassing and Other Stories|
Here is a collection of short stories that span the globe, but also finds time to examine the quiet shifts in an individual's sense of self. Two women visiting a weekend cottage defend their property from intruders but find their own sexual identity violated. A Chinese woman spins silk and elongates the thread of life and immunity. A child learns to swim and also some powerful lessons about adulthood. An Arab boy seeks his father among visiting US tourists. A London widow has her life and her memories stirred by a young visitor.
| ||All Good Women|
On the eve of World War II, four young women, students at a San Francisco secretarial school, become housemates. They are linked by working-class backgrounds, which have given them the desire for financial stability and independence. The story follows Teddy, Ann, Wanda, and Moira through war, affairs, pregnancies, and death.
| ||Blood Sisters|
At the heart of Blood Sisters are two cousins, one Irish, one American, who grew up steeped in their mothers' ideals of the 1916 Uprising. The two young women try to understand each others views, to cross the blurry lines between private and political life, but are divided by their separate histories and often despair at the possibility of comprehension, let alone reconciliation.
| ||Murder in the English Department|
Nan Weaver was the first member of her Catholic working class family to attend college. Now she's an assistant professor at the University of California at Berkeley. The main thing on her mind is obtaining tenure. The very last thing on her mind becoming the prime suspect in a murder investigation. But that's exactly what happens when circumstantial evidence links Nan-an outspoken feminist-to the murder of a boorish, sexist male colleague.