Crystal Ellefsen grew up in Austin, Texas and migrated to California for a B.A. in English at the University of California, Santa Barbara. While there she won the Ina Coolbrith Memorial Prize in Poetry and was a finalist for the University of California Poet Laureate. At her graduation from UCSB in 2006, she was the student commencement speaker.
After graduating, she worked for the Santa Barbara Writers Conference & the Santa Barbara Region Chamber of Commerce as Media & Public Relations Coordinator. Crystal won the 2010 Linda Hodge Bromberg Literary Award and in 2012 graduated from San Diego State with an MFA in Creative Writing. Crystal is a regular contributor for The Art of Simple. She lives in San Diego with her husband and kids. She has previously published poetry and non-fiction, plus completed other cool projects under the names Crystal Reed & Crystal Hadidian.