Originally from Carrollton, Illinois, author/agent/publisher Barbara Casey attended the University of North Carolina, N.C. State University, and N.C. Wesleyan College where she received a BA degree, summa cum laude, with a double major in English and history. In 1978 she left her position as Director of Public Relations and Vice President of Development at North Carolina Wesleyan College to write full time and develop her own manuscript evaluation and editorial service. In 1995 she established the Barbara Casey Agency and since that time has represented authors from the United States, Great Britain, Canada, and Japan. In 2014, she became a partner with Strategic Media Books where she is involved in acquisitions and day-to-day operations and oversees book production.
Ms. Casey's two middle-grade/young adult novels, Leilani Zan and Grandma Jock and Christabelle (James C. Winston Publishing Co.) were both nominated for awards of excellence by the SCBWI Golden Kite Award, the National Association of University Women Literary Award, and the Sir Walter Raleigh Literary Award. Shyla's Initiative (Speaking Volumes Publishing), a contemporary adult novel (occult romance/mystery), received an Independent Publishers Book Award and also an award of special literary recognition by the Palm Beach County Cultural Council. The Coach's Wife (Speaking Volumes Publishing), also a novel for adults (contemporary/mystery), was semi-finalist for the Dana Award for Outstanding Novel and listed on the Publisher’s Best Seller List. The House of Kane (Speaking Volumes Publishing) was considered for a Pulitzer nomination. Another contemporary novel for adults, Just Like Family, received “Special Recognition from the 7-Eleven Corporation,” and The Gospel According to Prissy, also a contemporary novel written for adults, received the Independent Publishers Book Award for Best Book in Regional Fiction.
The Cadence of Gypsies, a novel written for young/new adults was reviewed by the Smithsonian Institute for its List of Most Notable Books. In 2012, The Cadence of Gypsies was expanded into a mystery series called THE FIG MYSTERIES: The Wish Rider (2016), The Clock Flower (2018), and The Nightjar’s Promise (2020), and The Seraphim’s Song (2022).
Ms. Casey also writes book-length nonfiction for adults. Kathryn Kelly: The Moll behind Machine Gun Kelly, Assata Shakur: A 20th Century Escaped Slave, and Velvalee Dickinson: The “Doll Woman” Spy have received numerous awards and recognition, most notably the Book Excellence Award and the IPPY Award. Several of Ms. Casey’s books have been optioned for major films and television.
Ms. Casey's award-winning science fiction short stories for adults are featured in The Cosmic Unicorn and CrossTime science fiction anthologies. Ms. Casey's essays and other works appear in The Chrysalis Reader, the international literary journal of the Swedenborg Foundation, 221 One-Minute Monologues from Literature (Smith and Kraus Publishers), and A Cup of Comfort (Adams Media Corporation). Other award-winning articles, short stories, and poetry for adults have appeared in both national and international publications including the North Carolina Christian Advocate Magazine, The New East Magazine, the Raleigh (N.C.) News and Observer, the Rocky Mount (N.C.) Sunday Telegram, Dog Fancy, ByLine, The Christian Record, Skirt! Magazine, and True Story. A thirty-minute television special which Ms. Casey wrote and coordinated was broadcast on WRAL, Channel 5, in Raleigh, North Carolina. She also received special recognition for her editorial work on the English translations of Albanian children’s stories.
Ms. Casey is a former director of BookFest of the Palm Beaches, Florida, where she served as guest author and panelist. She has served as judge for the Pathfinder Literary Awards in Palm Beach and Martin Counties, Florida, and was the Florida Regional Advisor for the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators from 1991 through 2003. She has been a guest lecturer at universities and writers’ conferences around the country including the SCBWI Regional Conference, the Harriett Austin Writers Conference in Athens, SIBA (Southeastern Independent Book Sellers Association), Florida Writers Association, and the University of Auburn, Montgomery.
In 2018, Ms. Casey received the prestigious Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award for her extensive experience and notable accomplishments in the field of publishing and other areas. She makes her home on the top of a mountain in northwest Georgia with her three rescue cats who adopted her.