Eudora Welty wrote short stories and novels set in the deep South, drawing on her upbringing in Jackson, Mississippi.
She won the Pulitzer Prize in fiction for a novel, "The Optimist's Daughter," in 1972. That same year, the National Institute of Arts and Letters awarded her the gold medal for fiction.
I know her through her autobiography, One Writer's Beginnings. She wrote wonderful character descriptions in this volume, along with phrases that I love:
"The strands are all there; to the memory, nothing is ever really lost."
"She (Welty's mother) read Dickens in the spirit in which she would have eloped with him."
"...all serious daring starts from within."