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Lisa Lenard-Cook

1952 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
Lisa Lenard-Cook Obituary
Lenard-Cook, Lisa

Lisa Lenard-Cook, noted author, editor, teacher, and writers' mentor. Born June 23, 1952 in Buffalo, New York, Lisa grew up in the Town of Tonawanda and graduated in 1970 from Kenmore West Senior High School. She went on to graduate from the University of Buffalo with a BA, and received an MFA in Writing from the Vermont College of Fine Arts. Lisa first moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico in the mid-1970s, then moved to Washington DC with her first husband, where her daughter was born. She returned to Albuquerque from 1980-1986, then lived in Northern and Southern California, the Sandhills of Nebraska, and Southwest Colorado, where she taught writing and literature courses at Fort Lewis College in Durango from 1992-1997. After another year in Northern California, Lisa returned to Albuquerque, where she's lived since 1998. Lisa's novels and short stories have won numerous awards, including a Colorado Council of the Arts Grant and, more recently, the Red Shoes Award. A popular teacher and mentor to writers seeking to make what's on the page match what's in their heads, Lisa's novels include Dissonance, which won the Jim Sagel/Red Crane Books Award for the Novel, and was short-listed for PEN Southwest Book Award, a selection of Durango-La Plata Reads, an NPR Performance Today's Summer Reading Series selection, a Southwest Book of the Year from the Tucson/Pima County Library, a Librarian's Choice for Fiction at the Cincinnati Public Library, a New and Notable Book at the Midland, Michigan Public Library, and a Book Buzz Selection of Ramsey County, Minnesota Public Library; and Coyote Morning, which was short-listed for the New Mexico Presswomen's Zia Prize and was also a Southwest Book of the Year at the Tucson/Pima County Library. Lisa's third novel, Her Secret Life, will be published in Fall 2017. Her short stories, book reviews, articles, and essays have appeared in magazines including Rosebud, Southwest Review, and Puerto del Sol, and other books include The Mind of Your Story, a book about writing fiction, and Find Your Story, Write Your Memoir, as well as many trade nonfiction books. Lisa is a longtime faculty member at the Santa Barbara Writers Conference and has taught at writing conferences across the country.

Lisa was the daughter of Donna Fliegler of Orange, California and the late Baryl Lenard, wife of Robert (Bob) Cook of Albuquerque, New Mexico, mother of Kaitlin Kushner of San Francisco, California, sister of Richard (Terry) Lenard of Williamsville, New York and Daniel (Marcy) Lenard of Sherman Oaks, California. She also leaves behind numerous in-laws, nieces and nephews, cousins, and loyal friends all over the U.S. and Canada whom she touched with her words and laughter. A lifelong animal lover who shared her life with countless pets, Lisa also leaves behind Stellaluna, Red, and Hera.

A Celebration of Life will be held in Albuquerque, June 11.

Donations may be made to the Wild Wolf Sanctuary in Ramah New Mexico; Animal Humane New Mexico in Albuquerque; or the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund.
Published in Albuquerque Journal on May 29, 2016
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