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A former ‘city girl,’ Friend lives on a small farm in southeastern Minnesota, where she and her wife Melissa raise sheep and cattle. She writes adult nonfiction, fiction, and children’s books.

The Compassionate Carnivore won the Minnesota Book Award in General Nonfiction. Her memoir, Hit by a Farm, was selected by the Minneapolis Star Tribune as one of the best books of 2006. Her children’s picture book, The Perfect Nest, was chosen by the Wall Street Journal as one of five best ‘read alouds,’ and was nominated for numerous state reading awards. She was awarded a Loft/McKnight Artist Fellowship for Writers, and her adult adventure novels have won  awards from the Golden Crown Literary Society and the Independent Book Publishers Association.

Friend has a M.S. in Economics and a B.A. in Economics and Spanish. She does chores, teaches writing workshops, and speaks at libraries, yarn shops and fiber festivals, professional organizations, and schools. She’s discovered that farm chores and snowshoes make Minnesota winters bearable, and is especially proud she’s learned how to take the wool from her sheeps’ backs and knit it into very cool socks.

Catherine received a 2007 Loft/McKnight Fellowship in Children's Literature.
Catherine was awarded a 2010 Alice B. Medal for her body of work.
 
Hit By a Farm: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Barn
Finalist for a Lambda Literary Award
Winner of a 2007 Golden Crown Literary Award
Finalist for The Publishing Triangle’s Judy Grahn Award
 
The Compassionate Carnivore, Or How to Keep Animals Happy,
Save Old MacDonald’s Farm, Reduce Your Hoofprint, and Still Eat Meat
Winner of the 2009 Minnesota Book Award in General Nonfiction
 
The Perfect Nest
Winner of the 2009 Pennsylvania Keystone to Reading Book Award
Finalist for the:
Nevada Young Readers’ Award
Minnesota Book Award
Arizona Grand Canyon Readers Award
Norfolk (U.K.) Children’s Book Award
California Young Readers’ Medal
New Hampshire Ladybug Picture Book Award
Debbie Zimmerman Niagara Literary Award
 
A Pirate’s Heart
2008 Lesbian Fiction Readers Choice Award
Winner of the 2008 Ben Franklin Award in Fiction (Independent Book Publishers Association)
Winner of a 2009 Golden Crown Literary Award
Finalist for a Lambda Literary Award
 
The Spanish Pearl
Winner of a 2008 Golden Crown Literary Award
Finalist for a Gaylactic Spectrum Award
 
The Crown of Valencia
Winner of a 2008 Golden Crown Literary Award
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