Waterston Desert Writing Prize
Kathryn Wilder – 2018 Finalist
Kathryn Wilder’s submission, “These Seasons of Disappointment: Cows in the Desert,” is part memoir, part science, and part literature of place. Her project addresses ranching practices in the desert West. From an aging woman’s perspective and experience, she questions her own family’s heritage and the marriage of cattle to desert, and is looking at alternatives that support rather than deplete the rangeland.
Wilder has lived in and written about each of the Four Corners states, focusing on aridity, water, and the details of place as she worked on desert rivers and ranches, learning firsthand the fragility of these desert ecosystems. Wilder’s work has appeared in many publications and a dozen anthologies. In 2016 Wilder was Artist-in-Residence at Denali National Park and Preserve, and a finalist for the Ellen Meloy Fund Desert Writers Award. She is a 2017 graduate of the low-residency MFA program at the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe. Wilder lives in Dolores, Colorado. (Photo credit: TJ Holmes)