Jesmyn Ward is an American novelist. She won the 2011 National Book Award for Fiction and a 2012 Alex Award with her second novel Salvage the Bones, a story about familial love and community covering the 10 days preceding Hurricane Katrina, the day of the cyclone, and the day after. An assistant professor of Creative Writing at the University of South Alabama, Ward is currently working on a memoir. She was the John and Renée Grisham Writer in Residence at the University of Mississippi for the 2010–2011 academic year. From 2008 to 2010 Ward had a Stegner Fellowship at Stanford University. In April 2014, Ward announced her plans to join the faculty of Tulane University in the fall of 2014.