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Cathleen Miller

About Cathleen

An American by birth, Cathleen Miller has traveled around the globe to write her books telling the stories of people and places. She has interviewed diplomats and heads of state on five continents, patients in an Addis Ababa hospital, rape camp survivors in Kosovo, and midwives in the mountains of East Timor.


Her work sometimes places her in strange circumstances, for example cruising St. Petersburg in a Winnebago to interview prostitutes, and running down a Brazilian mountain at midnight fleeing bandits. Cathy’s biography of Nafis Sadik, Champion of Choice, is the result of ten years of work and many, many strange circumstances.

Cathy’s previous work includes the international bestseller Desert Flower, which has been translated into 55 languages and adapted as a feature film shown around the globe.

In both Desert Flower and Champion of Choice, Cathy utilizes storytelling as a rhetorical device to demonstrate how the issues which affect one individual are representative of a larger world order. The personal is political.

Cathy is also the author of a memoir about her life in rural Pennsylvania, The Birdhouse Chronicles, a book first written as her master’s thesis while she attended Penn State’s MFA program in creative writing.  Birdhouse received a Pushcart Prize nomination.

A winner of the Society of American Travel Writers gold award, Cathy’s travel essays have appeared in the Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, San Francisco Chronicle, and Los Angeles Times. Some of these appear in the collection Wild Writing Women: Stories of World Travel. ​

Cathleen Miller

​​At San José State University, Professor Miller taught creative writing for fifteen years, directed the Center for Literary Arts, and served as editor-in-chief of Reed, California's oldest literary journal. She’s an accomplished public speaker who has performed at numerous venues including Cinequest, LitQuake, the Ford Foundation, the United Nations Foundation, the Women, Peace and Conflict Lecture and Film Series, and the American Women’s Association of Rome; she’s also featured in a Ted Talk on a topic dear to her heart: “How to Raise Your Daughter to Become a World Leader.”​

Her work has appeared in many magazines and newspapers in the United States, including the San Francisco Chronicle, The Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, and Los Angeles Times. She is also a member of the Bay Area Travel Writers organization.

San Francisco Chronicle
The Washington Post
Chicago Tribune
Los Angeles Times
Cathleen Miller

In 2018 Cathleen Miller went to the University of Manchester as a US-UK Fulbright Scholar. In this role she served as the Distinguished Chair of the Humanities. 

Today she resides in England's scenic Peak District with her husband.

Cathleen Miller

"The beauty of writing is that it allows us to connect with others, to share our experiences and our perspectives, and to create a sense of community through the power of words."



"Writing is not a solitary act, but a conversation between the writer and the reader. It's a way of connecting with others, of sharing our experiences and our stories, and of creating a deeper understanding of the world around us."



"Life is a series of moments, some big, some small, but all important in their own way. It's up to us to embrace these moments, to savor them, and to find the beauty in each one."



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