I was born and raised in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Beginning in 1966 and for the next thirty years my father, novelist William Hardy, worked for the Cherokee Historical Association, first as Director of the symphonic drama Unto These Hills, which chronicles the events leading up to the Trail of Tears, the removal of the Cherokee to Oklahoma, then as its Producer. As a result, I spent seven summers on the Qualla boundary, the reservation of the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Nation. My 1995 short story collection, Constant Fire (Oberon) was set there and draws heavily on the history and mythology of that area, as was a later novel, Broken Road (Exile Editions, 2009.)
Viking Press published my first novel, A Cry of Bees, the story of a little girl growing up in a Southern Indiana boarding house full of decrepit old ladies, in 1970 when I was 17 years old. Out of print for many years, it can be found in most libraries and occasionally online at such sites as www.abebooks.com.