media kit

Rebecca and animals

Fast Facts

  • Rebecca has been for starters: an ice cream slinger, an orthodontist’s assistant, a process server, a professional animal trainer and a fund raiser.
  • Rebecca has a BA and an MFA in creative writing instead of degrees in avian sciences, but only because she failed chemistry twice.
  • Rebecca’s African grey parrot Ty has 15 years worth of dirt on her and quotes her misdeeds to dinner guests frequently
  • Rebecca has been spotted more than once, singing “Danny Boy” at a Piano Bar
  • The way to Rebecca’s heart is a good bottle of tequila. (and no, Jose Cuervo does not count.)



Rebecca K. O’Connor is the author of the award-winning memoir Lift published by Red Hen Press in 2009. She has published essays and short stories in South Dakota Review, Iron Horse Literary Review, Los Angeles Times Magazine, West, divide, The Coachella Review, Phantom Seed, Prime Number Magazine and The Rumpus. Her work has been anthologized in New California Writing 2011, New California Writing 2012, No Place for a Puritan: The Literature of California Deserts and Animal Companions, Animal Doctors, Animal People. Her novel, Falcon’s Return was a Holt Medallion Finalist for best first novel and she has published numerous reference books on the natural world.



Rebecca is quoted in the article “Hunting for Food, Finding Responsibility” in Nourished, a Canadian online/print magazine that explores the psychology of food and the meaning of eating.

:: Publisher’s Weekly Gives Lift a Starred Review:
Novelist and nature reference author O’Connor (Falcon’s Return) crafts a lyrical tribute to the spiritual connection between humans and birds in this memoir of the excruciating, transformative process of training a peregrine falcon: “Falconry is a religion, a way of thinking, a means of experiencing life.” Indeed, readers will find almost as much spiritual content as natural. Despite O’Connor’s icy-clear voice, her descriptions of training a young male falcon are fascinating for bird lovers and civilians alike: “when the falcon connects a high-speed dive… the duck remains a piece of the sky and only its body careens to earth.” Surprisingly, periodic flashbacks to a troubled childhood—an abusive stepfather, an absentee mother—bolster her story rather than distract, turning a falcon’s “serious and unmerciful” eye back on her own life, and discovering inexplicable wells of generosity and forgiveness for the family who wronged her. O’Connor packs a lot of intelligence, poise and feeling into a few pages, making this a consistently rewarding read. ~ Publisher’s Weekly, November 2009

:: Library Journal recommends Lift to “anyone interested in bird hunting or wildlife” and says, “O’Connor’s love of the hawks infuses the story with an addictive, violent intensity.”

:: Dan Barnett reviews Lift at the Chico Enterprise-Record, saying that “Like the talons of a raptor, the deeply felt words of the memoir dig into the reader and won’t let go… There’s a lesson here, and it’s not just about falcons.”

:: Insight host Jeffrey Callison interviews Rebecca about Lift on Capital Public Radio in Sacramento. Listen here.

:: Sonoran News writes that “Lift is a great read for anyone interested in what life lessons can be learned working with the most free of nature’s creatures, birds” and discusses Rebecca’s other work and passions.



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Photographs by Priscilla Iezzi



pdf November 2009 ~ Lift: A Memoir
Find out about Rebecca’s new memoir, Lift, published by Red Hen Press.


pdf Lift: A Memoir – Book Jacket
Download a PDF of the full book jacket for Lift.


pdf Sample Interview Questions with Rebecca




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