Sena Jeter Naslund was born in Birmingham, Alabama in 1942. She received a Bachelor's degree from Birmingham Southern College, where she received the B.B. Comer Medal in English, and a Master's degree and a doctorate from the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop. She has taught at the University of Louisville, the University of Montana, Indiana University (Bloomington), Vermont College, and the University of Montevallo. She has written several books including The Disobedience of Water, Ahab's Wife, Four Spirits, Abundance: A Novel of Marie Antoinette, and Adam and Eve. She has won numerous awards including the Harper Lee Award, the Hall-Waters Southern Prize, the Southeastern Library Association Award, and the Alabama Library Association Award.