Dana Stabenow

Dana Stabenow Biography:

There are many authors in the world today. Writing is something that many feel they are good at, while it may be proven otherwise. However, there are not many authors around now whose words can pull you in, grab your hand, and take you on their adventure with them. The one author that is able to do that now, however, is author Dana Stabenow. To learn of one of the best authors in the world today, take a look at the life, times, and works of Stabenow, and see what other books you may or may not have read yet.

Growing Up Dana

She was born as Dana Stabenow on March 27th, 1952. Unlike most kids, she was born on a 75 foot fishing tender in the Gulf of Alaska. She said to have battled seasickness, but always seemed to power through it. She said that when she wasn’t sick, she wrote short stories about normal kids who lived on the shore instead of the sea, and would make her mother read them. On her 12th birthday, in 1964, she said that she knew she was destined for greatness – all thanks to the great Alaska earthquake that hit that day.

Dana’s School And Work Life

Dana was a very good student throughout her school years, and she ended up graduating from the Seldovia high school in 1969. She said that she put herself through college. She worked as an egg grader while she attended school at the University of Alaska. She said that she not only worked as an egg grader, though. She also had jobs as a bookkeeper, and she also had a job working as an expediter for the Whitney-Fidalgo Seafood’s company in Anchorage, Alaska. She graduated in 1973 with a B.A degree in Journalism from her college.

After Graduation

Dana went on a four month backpacking trip through Europe with her college roommate. It was there that she said she met “English pubs, Irish men, and German beer”. Upon her arrival home, she was broke and looking for work. That’s when she got a job as a pipeline worker for the Trans Alaska Pipeline. The job brought a lot of money for Dana, which she ended up spending on frequent trips to Hawaii. It wasn’t until her 30th birthday in 1982 that she began to seriously ponder about what she wanted to do with the rest of her life.

Going Back To School

After a lot of thought, Dana went to UAA and got an MFA degree, where she graduated from in 1985. Upon graduating from UAA, Dana ended up publishing her first book in 1990. It was her goal to sell a book before she ended up blowing her money on other things. She published her book, Second Star, through Ace Science Fiction. Unfortunately, the book flopped and Dana felt her writing career wasn’t going to make it. It wasn’t until her publisher made a discovery of her mystery novel series that something amazing happened for Dana. It would change the entire way her life and career were heading, and end up being the big break she needed to make it as a writer.

The Journey To Her Contract

It wasn’t easy for Dana to achieve her writing career, much less a contract. Her publisher found one of her mystery books she had written, called the Kate Shugak series; A Cold Day For Murder. Her publisher pushed her to sign a three book contract to make the book a series. After some persuading, Dana signed the contract. In 1994, A Cold Day For Murder won the Edgar Award. Finally, after years of hard work, her career was taking off. The next two books in the series came within two years. Since then, Dana has written over dozen books in the last twenty one years.

Books Dana Wrote

Dana has written quite a number of books since 1992. She has written over twenty some books over the span of twenty years. Some of Dana’s best books include A Cold Day For Murder, A Cold Blooded Business, Blood Will Tell, Killing Grounds, Hunter’s Moon, and her latest hit, Bad Blood. Dana is currently working on another novel that will be released later this year or sometime next year. Dana also has an anthology series that she put out between 2002 and 2008. Dana’s latest mystery series, written from 1998 to 2000, helped push her career along after the Kate Shugak series.

Awards She Has Won

Dana has won several awards for her best-selling books. These include the Edgar awards in 1994, and an award for her newest Kate Shugak mystery book, the Nero award, in 2012. Dana has said that the Edgar award she received in 1994 really helped her career, and made her work harder as an author.

Recurring Characters

Dana hasn’t written very many books that have recurring characters. In fact, there are only three. These are from her mystery series and the one science fiction series that she has put out. These recurring characters are the Star Svendotter from the Sci-fi series she put out in 1990, Kate Shugak from her first mystery series that she wrote in the early 1990s, and Liam Campbell that she wrote from another mystery series in the late 1990s. These two are her best known characters, especially the Kate Shugak character. She also has a few recurring characters in her coast guard series. The most notable recurring character is Kate Shugak, who is involved in at least nineteen novels that Dana has written over the years.

Personal Life

Dana was raised by a single mother, whom she lived with on a fish tender boat. She still resides in Alaska, and continues to write her thriller/mystery novels, which are also set in home state of Alaska.

Dana Stabenow has lived a very full, rich life. She is one of the best and brightest mystery writers of our day, and continues to release jaw dropping novel after heart stopping novel. Many people look up to her as an inspiration when they go down the road of becoming a writer, and it isn’t without reason. To find out more about this amazing writer, you can visit her website. Make sure to pick up her books now and find out what the fuss is about Dana.

Books in order of publication by series:

Star Svensdotter Books

Second Star(1991) 
A Handful of Stars(1991) 
Red Planet Run(1995) 

Kate Shugak Books

A Cold Day For Murder(1992) 
A Fatal Thaw(1992) 
Dead in the Water(1993) 
A Cold Blooded Business(1994) 
Play With Fire(1995) 
Blood Will Tell(1996) 
Killing Grounds(1998) 
Hunter’s Moon(1999) 
Midnight Come Again(2000) 
The Singing of the Dead(2001) 
A Fine and Bitter Snow(2002) 
A Grave Denied(2003) 
A Taint in the Blood(2004) 
A Deeper Sleep(2007) 
Whisper to the Blood(2009) 
A Night Too Dark(2010) 
Though Not Dead(2011) 
Nooses Give(2011) 
Wreck Rights(2011) 
Restless in the Grave(2012) 
Bad Blood(2013) 
Less than a Treason(2017) 
No Fixed Line(2019) 

Liam Campbell Books

Fire and Ice(1998) 
So Sure of Death(1999) 
Nothing Gold Can Stay(2000) 
Better To Rest(2002) 

Coast Guard Books

Blindfold Game(2006) 
Prepared for Rage(2008) 

Alaska Short Stories

Gold Fever(2011) 
The Perfect Gift(2011) 

Mnemosynea Short Stories

Justice is a Two-Edged Sword(2011) 
A Woman’s Work(2011) 

Silk and Song Books

Everything Under the Heavens(2014) 
By the Shores of the Middle Sea(2014) 

Eye Of Isis Book

Death of an Eye(2018)


The Mysterious North(2002) 
Alaska Women Writers: Living, Loving and Laughing on the Last Frontier(2003) 
Wild Crimes(2004) 
Powers of Detection(2004) 
At the Scene of the Crime: Forensic Mysteries from Today’s Best Writers(2008) 
Unusual Suspects: Stories of Mystery & Fantasy(2008) 

Non-Fiction Books

Alaska Traveler: Dispatches from America’s Last Frontier(2008)
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