Frederic S. Durbin grew up in rural Illinois. At Concordia College, River Forest, Illinois, he majored in classical languages, studied mythology and English lit, and graduated with highest honors. He sold his first novel, Dragonfly, to Arkham House in 1999. A dark fantasy for grownups, the book takes place in an eerie subterranean world and follows the adventures of a young girl who must overcome a host of childhood nightmares to save humankind. Durbin's second novel, The Star Shard (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt), is a fantasy for younger readers. A writer of place, Durbin's gateway into a story is nearly always an intricately developed setting. He favors underground and secret spaces, ancient mysteries, and monsters. During the 22 years he spent in Japan, teaching creative writing and English, he published a variety of short work in magazines including Cricket, Cicada, F&SF, Weird Tales, and Black Gate. Another fantasy novel for grownups is scheduled for release in 2016. Commissioned by Cricket Magazine, he helped to develop a project called Crowd-Sorcery, which has allowed young readers worldwide to create the characters for a fantasy story Durbin is now writing; titled "The Girl Who Writes the Future," it begins serial publication in the November/December issue of Cricket, available now. A resident of western Pennsylvania, Durbin is a frequent speaker and presenter of writing workshops. He blogs about the writing life at www.fredericsdurbin.com.