Nancy Milford (born March 26, 1938) is an American biographer.
Milford is best known for her book Zelda about F. Scott Fitzgerald's wife Zelda Fitzgerald. The book started out as her master's thesis and was published to broad acclaim in 1970. It was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award, spent 29 weeks on The New York Times best-seller list, and has since been translated into 17 languages.
Her most recent book is Savage Beauty: The Life of Edna St. Vincent Millay, which was published in 2001. She is currently working on a biography of Rose Kennedy.
Milford received her B.A. from the University of Michigan, then earned an M.A. (1964) and Ph.D. (1972) at Columbia University.
While considering writing to be her primary career, Milford has also taught at the University of Michigan, Princeton University, Brown University, Vassar College, New York University, Bennington College, Briarcliff College, and Bard College. In 2002, she became a visiting professor at Hunter College of the City University of New York, and has since joined the permanent faculty there as a Distinguished Lecturer.
In February, 2008, Milford was named the executive director of the Leon Levy Center for Biography at the Graduate Center, CUNY.
Milford lives in New York.
Contributor, Adrienne Rich's Poetry, 1975.
Savage Beauty: The Life of Edna St. Vincent Millay, 2001.
Editor and author of the introduction, The Selected Poetry of Edna St. Vincent Millay, 2001.
Milford has been an Annenberg Fellow at Brown University in 1995; a Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellow in 1995; a Fulbright scholar in Turkey in 1996 and 1999; a Guggenheim Fellow in 1978; a Literary Lion at the New York Public Library in 1984. In 1972, she was awarded an honorary doctorate by Windham College.
The Writers Room is the name of a workspace in New York City that was first founded in 1978 by Nancy Milford. The workspace serves as a place where, for a fee, writers can work on their project and have access to reference materials and fellow writers. Milford and several other writers came up with the idea after they found that they needed a space apart from the Frederick Lewis Allen Room of the New York Public Library in order to work. The location of The Writers Room has moved several times since its launch in order to accommodate new members.
The workspace originally started with 22 members, each donating $100 towards the rental of the initial room, but has since expanded to more than 300 members as of 1999.