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Featured image for post Natalie Goldberg

© Alice Shorett


Natalie Goldberg ( is the author of fifteen books, including the classic bestseller Writing Down the Bones, which has changed the way writing is taught in the United States; the beloved memoir Long Quiet Highway; the novel Banana Rose; Living Color, about her painting; and her legacy book, The True Secret of Writing. Her latest is Three Simple Lines: A Writer’s Pilgrimage to the Heart and Homeland of Haiku. Natalie lived in Brooklyn until she was six, when her family moved out to Farmingdale, Long Island, where her father owned the bar the Aero Tavern. From a young age, Natalie was mad for books and reading, and especially loved Carson McCullers’s The Ballad of the Sad Cafe, which she read in ninth grade. She thinks that single book led her eventually to put pen to paper when she was twenty-four years old. She received a BA in English literature from George Washington University and an MA in humanities from St. John’s University. Natalie has painted for as long as she has written, and her paintings can be seen in Living Color: A Writer Paints Her World and Top of My Lungs: Poems and Paintings. In 2006, she completed with the filmmaker Mary Feidt a one-hour documentary, Tangled Up in Bob, about Bob Dylan’s childhood on the Iron Range in Northern Minnesota. Natalie has been a serious Zen practitioner since 1974, studying rigorously with Katagiri Roshi from 1978 to 1984, and has taught writing as a practice for the past forty-five years nationally and internationally. She lives in northern New Mexico.