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Ouida Sebestyen

Author of Words by Heart

Includes the names: Ouida Sebestyn, Ouida Sebestyen

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Ouida Sebestyen, nee Dockery, was born February 13, 1924, in Vernon, TX. She married Adam Sebestyen in 1960 and had one son. She attended the U. of Colorado. She began writing at age eighteen, but did not publish her first book, Words by Heart until 1979. Part of this novel had originally appeared as a short story in the magazine 'Ingenue' in 1968. The book was well received, and Ms. Sebestyen has continued to write fiction for young adults. She draws her inspiration, and often her setting, from the American West, especially its contrasting harshness and beauty, and the demands it places upon an individual's survival. While not all her novels are set in a sharply defined Western setting, throughout all of her books she focuses on characterization and detail, with an emphasis on human emotions and development. Her work is noted for its honesty and provacative story lines that do not always provide a conventional happy ending. Biographical Sources: Something About the Author, vols. 39, 140 Something About the Author Autobiography Series, vol. 10 Children's Literature Review, vol. 17
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