Pamela Schoenewaldt

About me

My first two historical novels, WHEN WE WERE STRANGERS (HarperCollins, 2011) and SWIMMING IN THE MOON (HarperCollins, 2013) deal with the immigration experience, worker justice, women’s issues, and treatment of mental illness. My interest in immigration comes from the 10 years I lived in Italy and fascination with the challenge, the strange pleasures, and the displacement of being “a stranger.” Now I live in Knoxville, TN (a displaced Northerner) with my husband Maurizio, a physicist, and Jesse, the dog.
My academic background is Renaissance literature, and for many years I wrote short stories for pleasure while working as a professional writer of scripts, speeches, articles, and brochures. I’ve taught writing at the University of Maryland, European Division and the University of Tennessee where I was writer in residence.

From my website

Glockenspiels, not Glocks!

A billboard near me (Knoxville, TN) proposes December 3 as Glock Day. As in: Celebrate this season of joy by gifting your loved ones a major handgun. I do not believe that this is a solution on any micro or macro level of society. However, what about Glockenspiels? Easy to…

Where invention comes from, maybe

This the Palazzo Donn’Anna, in Naples, the memory of which launched my second historical novel, Swimming in the Moon (2013). My Italian teacher grew up in the vast apartment on the second floor, full of marble, Venetian glass, and monumental 18th C oils. The enormous dining room window was rimmed…

Those we welcomed

My first three books recounted the European immigrant experience. These photographs taken by an Ellis Island clerk show the incredible diversity of people who braved the journey and the soul of the country that received them. You will be stopped by various ads when you scroll through, but persist. It’s…

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