Erin Bow was born in Des Moines and raised in Omaha. She studied particle physics in college, eventually working at the CERN laboratory near Geneva, Switzerland. She then decided to leave science in order to concentrate on her love of writing. She has since written two books of poetry and a memoir. Her poetry has won the CBC Canadian Literary Award, whose previous winners include Michael Ondaatje and Carol Shields, as well as several other awards. She lives in Kitchener, Ontario.