Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Nancy Nau Sullivan  

Pen Name: Nancy Nau Sullivan

Genre: Non-Fiction

Born: 1945 in San Francisco, California


Illinois Connection

Although a native Californian--her father was a Navy man based out of the Golden Gate City--she grew up from age three months in Lansing, Illinois near her grandfather's farm. One of her first recollections is of a sunny summer day when one of "Pa's" cows stepped on her and broke her collar bone. Life was not so perilous from then on. She is the the eldest of seven, grew up on wild asparagus and gooseberries, and always drifts away each summer when she sees the cotton wood "fairies" floating in the air. She left Illinois at 18 to go to college, and returned many years later to live in Chicago and teach and write. Her new memoir, ''The Last Cadillac'', was mostly written on the sixth floor of a vintage building overlooking the Newberry and Washington Park. The seasons come and go, but Illinois holds its own wonders and charm for her. . . .

Biographical and Professional Information

Nancy Nau Sullivan is an author, former print journalist, teacher, and Peace Corps volunteer. She worked as a reporter and editor at newspapers in the Midwest, and later earned a master's degree in journalism from Marquette University. She began her teaching career in Florida where she taught English at a boys's prison, then in Argentina, in Chicago, and in Mexico as a Peace Corps volunteer. Her stories have appeared in ''Gargoyle'', ''The Linnet's Wings'', ''The Blotter'', ''The Atherton Review'', and ''Red Rock Review''. Her memoir, ''The Last Cadillac'', was published in 2016 by Walrus, an imprint of Amphorae Publishing Group. She lives in Chicago and the Indiana dunes.

Published Works Expand for more information

Titles At Your Library

The Last Cadillac: A Memoir
ISBN: 1940442125

Walrus Publishing. 2016

Middle-age is challenging enough, but when Nancy Nau Sullivan suddenly finds herself caring for two children, grappling with her mother’s death, and caring for her ailing father while at the same time navigating a contentious divorce and dealing with long-simmering sibling rivalries, she wonders how she can keep herself sane. Things get even more complicated when her siblings accuse her of “kidnapping” their father and carting him―and his Cadillac―off to Anna Maria Island, Florida, where they are greeted by Hurricane Josephine. In this gripping memoir, Sullivan guides the reader through the chaotic whirlwind of unexpected and unwanted change and offers a common sense and humorous guide to surviving family relationships.


-- *Honorable mention, story, Carnegie Center, Louisville, 2015, ''Story "Once, I Had a Bunch of Thyme"''