Laura Jackson Roberts is an environmental writer, essayist, and humorist. A lifelong West Virginian, she grew up in Wheeling and attended Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Florida. After returning to West Virginia, she attended Chatham University in Pittsburgh and received an MFA in Creative Writing.
Laura is a research writer at West Virginia University, where she tells the stories of the many brilliant, dedicated West Virginians working to further the cause of science and humanities, both in the state and beyond. Her stories appear online at WVU Today and in WVU Magazine.
She’s written for Wonderful West Virginia magazine, West Virginia Living magazine, and Weelunk, a northern panhandle publication. As a freelancer, she’s worked with regional organizations like Oglebay Institute, the Children’s Museum of the Ohio Valley, Archiving Wheeling, East Wheeling Clayworks, and the Oglebay Park Foundation. She blogs for Mountaineer Media.
Her essays have appeared in places like Terrain, Brevity, Hippocampus, Still, and Bayou Magazine. Her humor has been published in Defenestration, Halfway Down the Stairs, and Animal, among others. Her humor series, “Roberts Ruminates,” appeared in Weelunk Magazine from 2016-2020.
Laura serves on the board of West Virginia Writers, Inc, the state’s largest writing organization, and is a member of the Writers Association of Northern Appalachia (WANA). She has also served as an editor for Literary Mama magazine.
Laura lives with her family in northern West Virginia and spends her time traveling, camping, and hiking in the mountains.
- Notable Essay in Best American Essays, 2021, “The Imperfect Aquarist”
- Most Innovative Thesis, Chatham University MFA Program, 2016
- Honorable Mention, West Virginia Writers competition, Humor Category, 2016
- Third Place, West Virginia Writers competition, Humor Category, 2016
- First Place, West Virginia Writers competition, Humor Category, 2016
- Second Place, West Virginia Writers competition, Pearl S. Buck Award for Writing for Social Change Category, 2017
- Honorable Mention, West Virginia Writers competition, Nonfiction Category, 2017
- First Place, West Virginia Writers competition, Nonfiction Category, 2017
- Second Place, West Virginia Writers competition, Humor Category, 2018
Find her on Instagram! @thatwvwriter