"What will this world be like now that the earth seems to have cracked open?"
Living through the huge Loma Prieta earthquake in 1989 prompted me to ask that question, and it launched me on a journey of searching for my biological family, hoping to uncover my identity.
And I did it while I was working as a wilderness guide throughout the American West.
My book, Unnatural Selection: A Memoir of Adoption and Wilderness tells the story of what happened next.
These uncertain times make it seem like our world has cracked open--
We are all launching on a new journey, one that requires us to take stock of who we are and what we can do to make the world, and ourselves, more whole.
As a writer and speaker, I explore how outdoor experiences and adventures can enrich our sense of identity and wholeness.
Andrea Ross, Writer
A Memoir of Adoption
“...everyone has family secrets, truths we squint at through obfuscated
hints...the finding of hidden stories is the work of becoming humanly whole."
--from the Foreword by Miriam Peskowitz
"Beautifully written. A must read!
--Nancy Verrier, author of The Primal Wound and Coming Home to Self
"Read this for the stories of wild places and wild people and, in the end,
the moving story of family."
--David Gessner, author of Leave It As It Is: A Journey Through Theodore
Roosevelt’s American Wilderness
writes essays, creative nonfiction, fiction, and poetry. She formerly worked as a National Park Service ranger and wilderness guide throughout the American West. As an adopted person, she is passionate about bringing to light the experiences of adopted people. She teaches writing at the University of California, Davis.
"Double Vision" (in Parks and Points)
"Questions I Dare Ask: Interview with Amy Irvine" (in Terrain)
"A Feminist Look at Ed Abbey's Conservationist Writings" (in Ploughshares)
"Ask a Ranger," Permanent Vacation, Vol. 2, Bona Fide Press, 2018
“Wilderness Culture in the Pacific Region,” in Pacific Regional Culture, Greenwood Press, 2004
“Terry Tempest Williams,” American Literary Biographies, University of Oxford Press, 2003
"At Upper Ribbon Falls,"
and "Bessie's Honeymoon, 1928,"
Going Down Grand: Poems from the Canyon, Lithic Press
(Read a review here)
“Breaching,” Mountain Gazette, July 2003
“Backwater in July,” Mountain Gazette, June 2003
“Dams,” The Café Review, Vol. 12, Autumn 2001
“Natural Disasters,” Manzanita Literary Journal, October 2001
“Raven-Watcher,” The Boatman’s Quarterly Review, Fall 2001
"Grand Canyon Life Zones,” Blueline, vol. xix. Fall 1998
Andrea's podcast debut on The Dirtbag Diaries