Noted author and art critic Lynn Crawford began her career as a social worker in New York before discovering her flair for writing. “While I was in New York I met some writers and artists. I fell in with the art crowd and they saw my potential,” Crawford said.
She gathered her breadth of experiences in the art community and interacted with fascinating people in New York. She began developing compelling characters in an imaginative world of fiction.
Crawford sent her manuscript for Solow, to the renowned, Michigan-born writer and poet, Jim Harrison. Harrison, best known for penning the epic saga Legend of the Falls, inspired Crawford with an encouraging response of approval.
“Haven’t wanted to read anything lately, certainly not any of the 500 manuscripts and galleys I get a year,” Harrison wrote. “However, I found Solow fascinating. It reminds me of early John Hawkes which is still for me the best Hawkes. The whole dreamscape was especially vivid.”
Solow became Crawford’s first published book in 1995.
Crawford and her family later moved from New York to Michigan and settled in Birmingham nearly 20 years ago.
Seamlessly merging her artistic insight and ingenuity for writing, she began working as an art critic. She has written pieces for art publications such as Modern Painters, Art in America, The Brooklyn Rail and Parkett.
“One of my friends was an editor for ‘Art in America’ and I was asked to write,” Crawford said. “I have a duel career. It’s an interesting balance.”
As a novelist, Crawford has published Blow, Simply Separate People, Fortification Resort, Simply Separate People Two and Shankus and Kitto. With the exception of her latest book, Shankus and Kitto, her books are all available on Amazon.
Crawford’s devotion to Michigan compelled her to publish Shankus and Kitto with Ditto Ditto, a Detroit-based publishing house and book shop in Corktown. Currently, the novel is exclusively available at Ditto Ditto, and plans to later be sold online.
With her passion for the arts, Crawford is a founding board member of the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD). In 2010, she was awarded a Kresge Literary Arts Fellowship and in 2016, she was awarded the Rauschenberg Fellowship.
Presently, the award-winning author is writing volume two of Shankus and Kitto and her first detective novel. She has an office in Birmingham.
“It’s my little hideaway,” she said. “I do hot yoga in the morning. I meditate and go to my office for a couple hours every day. I feel so blessed that I’m able to write and live in the Detroit area.”
As committed as she is to her thriving careers, she is most grateful for her family.
“I gave up a lot to spend a lot of time with (my kids),” she said. “I’m so happy I made that choice.”
Crawford career is thriving and she continues to aim higher. “I would love someone to make a movie out of one of my books,” she said. “I would love to get my book in the hands of a filmmaker.”
Photo: Laurie Tennent