American writer of short stories and novels whose characters, having come of age in the 1960s, often have difficulties adjusting to the cultural values of later generations. Beattie graduated from the American University in Washington, D.C., in 1969 and received a master of arts degree from the University of Connecticut in 1970. Her short stories were published in The New Yorker and other literary magazines beginning in the early 1970s. She published her first collection of stories, Distortions, in 1976. Her first novel, Chilly Scenes of Winter, also appeared in 1976; it was subsequently adapted as the film Head over Heels (1979), which was later rereleased as Chilly Scenes of Winter (1982).