Literature: Writer

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Tom McNeal

Literature: Writer

About the artist:

Author Tom McNeal is also a Coronado resident, with fellow author and wife Laura, their two sons Sam and Hank, and dog, Link. Tom earned a BA in English at U.C. Berkeley, an MFA in Creative Writing from U.C. Irvine, and was a Wallace Stegner Fellow at Stanford University. He spent parts of boyhood summers at the Nebraska farm where his mother was born and raised, and later taught school in the nearby town that was the inspiration for his first novel, Goodnight, Nebraska (1998), which won the James A. Michener Prize and the California Book Award.

In 2011, Tom published his second novel, To Be Sung Underwater. A love story set both in California and Nebraska, the book was named a best book of the year by the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, the Seattle Times, Shelf Awareness, and Booklist. His third book Far, Far Away (2013), “a dark, contemporary fairy tale,” was a National Book Award finalist. He’s also published short fiction in Best American Short Stories, The O. Henry Prize Collection, and The Pushcart Prize Collection. His story "What Happened to Tully," which first appeared in The Atlantic Monthly, was made into the movie Tully (2000).

Together, Tom and Laura McNeal are the authors of four critically acclaimed young adult novels: Crooked (1999), Zipped (2003), Crushed (2006), and The Decoding of Lana Morris (2007). Learn more about Tom and his books at