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Derek Burnett is an award-winning novelist and journalist who has written hundreds of articles for national publications. A contributing editor and former senior writer for Reader's Digest magazine, he is drawn to stories about people in extreme situations, and fascinated by human responses to disaster and violence. His work has taken him to earthquake-stricken Pakistani Kashmir, jungle hideouts for rebels and persecuted civilians in Burma, the floodwaters of hurricane-devastated New Orleans, and beyond. His journalism has been honored by the National Press Club.


​His debut novel, The Skeleton Walkers , was shortlisted for Western Fictioneers' Peacemaker Award for Best First Western Novel in 2015. His comedic western novel, The Fortunes and Vicissitudes of Stern Whitman, published by Five Star, was a finalist for Western Writers of America's prestigious Spur Award for Best Traditional Western Novel in 2021.


 He currently lives in rural North Carolina with his wife and two children.

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