Annette Haws’s literary strengths are based upon her experiences in the classroom. She has a clear, steady voice as she opens a window into the troubled world of adolescent angst and the lives of teachers trying to see into that world. Her bias is apparent; she is clearly sympathetic to the plight of teachers, but she is not blinded to their weaknesses, as she examines the flaws of her main character and allows the consequences, created by those flaws, to drive the plot.
She began her teaching career as a junior high teacher in Richmond, Utah and ended it teaching Sophomore English at Murray High School in Salt Lake City. However, her favorite assignment was a five year period at Logan High School teaching English, coaching debate and mock trial, and watching the antics of her own three children who were also students in the same school. In that five-year period, she coached, with her colleague Allison Dunn, three state championship teams and endured endless bus trips to tournaments across the state.
A native of Logan, Utah and a graduate of Utah State University, Ms. Haws examines the tribulations and foibles of characters playing their parts on a small stage. She did graduate work at the University of Iowa and the University of Utah. Her first novel, Waiting for the Light to Change (2008) won Best of State in 2009, A Whitney Award for Best Fiction, and the Diamond Quill Award for Best Published Fiction in 2009 from the League of Utah Writers. In July of 2008, the Midwest Book Review selected it as a Top Pick for Community Library Fiction Collections. Ms. Haws has been published in Sunstone, and a short story, “Fish Stories” will appear in the 2011 Winter Issue of Dialogue.
After fourteen years of teaching in the public school system, Ms. Haws set aside her denim jumpers ad sturdy shoes to pursue her interest in writing fiction. The characters in her new novel are creations or composites with two exceptions; she has drawn as closely as possible her son Andy and her friend Allison. Her large golden retriever bounded into the book uninvited.
Ms. Haws and her husband Charles currently reside in Holladay, Utah. They are the parents of four above average children, Pete, Andy, Betsy, and Charlotte, and have a spectacular little grandson, Ben and an adorable granddaughter, Lucy Jane, who knows her own mind.