Michelle Black

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Michelle Black
Born Topeka, Kansas
Occupation Writer and attorney
Genre Historical fiction
Historical mystery novels
Notable works An Uncommon Enemy
Solomon Spring
Séance in Sepia

Michelle Black is an American author of historical fiction and historical mystery novels. She is also an attorney, former bookstore owner, and publisher.

Early Life and Education[edit]

Black was born in Topeka, Kansas. She studied Fine Arts at the University of Kansas, graduating cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology from Washburn University. She received a Juris Doctor degree from the Washburn University School of Law with honors in 1980.[1]


Black practiced law in both the public and private sectors until 1993, when she moved to Frisco, Colorado and began writing full time. There she owned an independent bookstore called Wolf Moon Books and formed a small press which published (in a nonprofit partnership with a linguist on the Northern Cheyenne Reservation) a Cheyenne language course called “Let’s Talk Cheyenne”.[2]

Her first two novels (Never Come Down and Lightning in a Drought Year) were published electronically by one of the first digital publishers, Hard Shell Word Factory. Her three Eden Murdoch novels (An Uncommon Enemy, Solomon Spring, and The Second Glass of Absinthe) were published by Macmillan Publishers under the Tor-Forge imprint, with the second and third books in the series carrying the subtitle “Mysteries of the Victorian West.” [3]

Her sixth novel, Séance in Sepia, featured real-life feminist Victoria Woodhull as its protagonist and highlights Black’s ongoing interest in the world of the Victorian occult. Black’s grandmother was raised in the Spiritualist Church, and spiritualists have figured prominently in her most recent titles.[4]

Black’s writing has been recognized by the Colorado Center for the Book, the Oklahoma Center for the Book, the WILLA Literary Award, and the Colorado Independent Publishers Association.[5]

Black is an active participant in the Steampunk movement, frequently appearing at Steampunk conventions like Steamcon and writing articles on the topic.[6]



Never Come Down (1996)

Lightning in a Drought Year (1999)

An Uncommon Enemy (2001) USA, Forge Books, ISBN 978-0765301031

Solomon Spring (2002) USA Forge Books, ISBN 978-0765304650

The Second Glass of Absinthe (2003) USA, Forge Books, ISBN 978-0765308642

Séance in Sepia (2011) USA, Five Star (Gale/Cengage) ISBN 978-1432825485

Short Fiction[edit]

The Hundred Day Men, appearing in Westward: A Fictional History of the American West (Dale Walker editor)(2003), Forge Books, ISBN 978-0765304513


  1. ^ [1] Blankenship, Bill. "Novel puts new spin on historical event." Topeka Capital-Journal, October 1, 2001.
  2. ^ [2] Rowlands, Lucinda. "Uncommon Enemy by Michelle Black." Indian Country Today, June 26, 2003.
  3. ^ [3] "Are Bloggers the New Gatekeepers In Publishing?" Writers Digest, September 29, 2010.
  4. ^ [4] Airship Ambassador. "Interview with Michelle Black." (Retrieved December 9, 2012)
  5. ^ Walker, Dale. “Western Treasure Hunter.” True West Magazine, May/June 2003 (Volume 50, Issue 5), page 74.
  6. ^ [5] "Full Steam Ahead. The Steampunk Movement Goes West." True West Magazine, March, 2011 (Volume 58, Issue 3), page 48.

External links[edit]