After thirty years in the field of special education/mental health, Catherine Gentile opted for an early retirement so she could dedicate herself to writing. Shortly thereafter, her mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s dementia. During the next twelve years, she helped care for her mother, served as her Health Care Advocate, and wrote every day.
Gentile's fiction received the Dana Award for Short Fiction and finalist status in the American Fiction Prize Contest and the International Reynolds Price Short Fiction Award. After publishing in American Fiction, The Briar Cliff Review, The Chaffin Journal, and others, Catherine ventured into the absorbing world of the novel. In her debut novel, The Quiet Roar of a Hummingbird, the characters and conflicts she imagined while visiting her mother in a skilled nursing facility come to life.
Armed with research, reams of notes taken during her mother’s illness, and the anecdotes of her readers, Gentile edits the family-friendly ezine, Together With Alzheimer’s. This free monthly collection of practical tips supports and assists the caregiver with information about Alzheimer’s dementia, advocacy, and self-care for the caregiver.
Gentile’s nonfiction covers a variety of topics that have appeared in Writers’ Market, Down East, and Maine magazine, and she contributes to numerous online publications, including Garden Write Now!, Ezine.com, and Portland Trails Newsletter.
Currently, Gentile is editing her second novel, Sunday’s Orphan, and writing the initial draft of a nonfiction book entitled Practical Alzheimer’s. In keeping with her lifelong love affair with the theater, she is adapting her award-winning short story, Buonma Sung Yong O’Reilly, into a play.
A master gardener and amateur photographer, Gentile helps others design and photograph their gardens. Yoga, biking, and cross-country skiing add variety to her daily exercise routine. She favors organic foods and often experiments with new recipes. Does she feel guilty about the time these interests take from her writing? “Not at all,” she says. “My hobbies feed my creative juices and inspire my writing.”
A native of Hartford, Connecticut, Gentile and her muse live with her husband on a small island off the coast of Maine. She welcomes selected invitations for readings and speaking engagements and lists them on her website. To inquire about a possible appearance, contact her via email.