About Ryder

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Ryder Ziebarth’s experience as a writer includes a year at The University of London studying Art History and English Literature, a BA in Communications and Creative Writing from New England College, a certificate degree from Columbia University’s Teachers College in Executive Coaching, and an MFA in Creative Nonfiction from Vermont College of Fine Arts.

As founder and director of the Cedar Ridge Writers Series, she hosts one-day workshops featuring guest instructors and speakers world-wide. Formerly an associate editor with Tiferet Journal, she is currently the columnist for the Proximity TRUE blog. Since 2011, Ryder has been a core committee member with the Nantucket Book Festival in Nantucket, MA.

An avid, seat-of-the-pants, self-taught gardener, Ryder chairs the Garden History and Design committee for the Somerset Hills Garden Club. Her thirty-acre hay farm and gardens are listed with The Archives of the American Gardens of the Smithsonian Gardens in Washington, D.C.,which is dedicated to preserving and documenting unique and important gardens and landscape architecture throughout the United States.

Ryder is an active member of the National Society of Colonial Dames in the State of New Jersey and a Mayflower descendant. In 1998, she was a founding member of the Board of Directors for the Jacobus Vanderveer House in Bedminster, New Jersey, a meeting place for General George Washington and General Henry Knox during the Revolutionary War. The house is now listed as a historical and national landmark.

Her current work has appeared in N Magazine, The New York Times, Punctuate, The Brevity Blog, Tiferet, Assay, Proximity, Past Ten, and other blogs, newspapers, and online publications. She was raised on Cedar Ridge Farm, a 1745 hay and Black Angus operation, living with her parents and siblings, great-grandmother, grandparents, an uncle, visiting aunts, and uncles and cousins from both sides of her family. She was able to move back to the farm in 1995 as a wife and mother and is currently writing a memoir about the death of her father in 2014, who made it possible for Ryder and her husband, Michael, to purchase, restore and live on Cedar Ridge Farm with their daughter, Lizzie.

You can listen to the story of her farm as told this Spring to Jennifer Jewell, host of North State Public Radio’s–an NPR affiliate– weekly gardening program, Cultivating Place. 

Ryder lives on the farm now with her family and their three West Highland Terriers: Petal, Atticus Finch, and the brand new puppy named Nick.