sister of N. P. Willis, was a popular author under the pseudonym Fanny Fern. Her first book, Fern Leaves from Fanny's Portfolio (1853), became popular for its sharp, playful sketches. This was followed by several similar works, continuing her style of feminine wit plus bloodcurdling melodrama and touchingly tender tales. Her brother's reputation as a rake so infuriated her that she wrote Ruth Hall (1855), a scurrilous fictional satire. For many years she was a columnist for the New York Ledger. She married James Parton in 1856.