Leslie Marmon Silko was born March 5, 1948 in Albuquerque, New Mexico. She attended the University of New Mexico, and graduated with honors in 1969 with a B.A. in English. Her books of poetry include Storyteller (Seaver Books, 1981), and Laguna Women Poems (1974). She is also a writer of short stories and fiction. A child of mixed Laguna Pueblo, Mexican, and white heritage, her first novel, Ceremony (1977), was one of the first published novels by an American Indian woman. Her other novels include Gardens in the Dunes (1999), and Almanac of the Dead (1992).
Silko's honors include a MacArthur Foundation "Genius" fellowship, a National Endowment for the Arts grant, a Pushcart Prize for Poetry, and a Rosewater Foundation grant. She has been named a Living Cultural Treasure by the New Mexico Endowment for the Humanities Council, and has also received the Native Writers' Circle of the Americas Lifetime Achievement Award. Silko has taught English at the Navajo Community College in Tsaile, Arizona, and at the University of New Mexico. She is currently a professor at the University of Arizona at Tucson.