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Lance Olsen is author of more than 30 books of and about innovative writing, including, most recently, Absolute Away (Dzanc, 2024), Shrapnel: Contemplations (Anti-Oedipus, 2024), and Always Crashing in the Same Car: A Novel After David Bowie (FC2, 2023). His short stories, essays, and reviews have appeared in hundreds of journals and anthologies, such as Conjunctions, Black Warrior Review, Fiction International, Village Voice, BOMB, McSweeney’s, and Best American Non-Required Reading. A Guggenheim, Berlin Prize, D.A.A.D. Artist-in-Berlin Residency, Rockefeller Bellagio Center, Pushcart Prize, and two-time N.E.A. Fellowship recipient, as well as a Fulbright Scholar (Finland), he is Professor Emeritus at the University of Utah, where he taught experimental narrative theory and practice.


Ph.D., Modern & Postmodern Literature,
University of Virginia, 1985.

M.A., Literature,
University of Virginia, 1982.

M.F.A., Fiction Writing,
Writers’ Workshop, University of Iowa, 1980.

B.A., English and Journalism (Honors),
University of Wisconsin, 1978.

Absolute Away (Ann Arbor, MI: Dzanc Books, forthcoming spring 2021).

Always Crashing in the Same Car: A Novel After David Bowie (Tuscaloosa, AL: FC2, 2023).

Skin Elegies (Ann Arbor, MI: Dzanc Books, 2021). 

My Red Heaven (Ann Arbor, MI: Dzanc Books, 2020).

Dreamlives of Debris (Ann Arbor, MI: Dzanc Books, 2017).

There’s No Place Like Time: A Retrospective (Lake Forest, IL: &Now Books, 2016).

Theories of Forgetting (Tuscaloosa, AL: Fiction Collective Two, 2014).

Calendar of Regrets (Tuscaloosa, AL: Fiction Collective Two, 2010).

Head in Flames (Portland, OR: Chiasmus Press, 2009).

Anxious Pleasures (Emeryville, CA: Shoemaker & Hoard, 2007).

Nietzsche’s Kisses (Tallahassee, FL: Fiction Collective Two, 2006).

10:01 (print version: Portland, OR: Chiasmus Press, 2005; hypermedia version: Iowa Revew Web 7.2 November 2005).

Girl Imagined by Chance (Tallahassee, FL: Fiction Collective Two, 2002).

Freaknest (La Grande, OR: Wordcraft, 2000).

Time Famine (San Francisco, CA: Permeable Press, 1996).

Burnt (La Grande, OR: Wordcraft, 1996).

Tonguing the Zeitgeist (San Francisco, CA: Permeable Press,1994).

Live from Earth (NY: Available Press/Ballantine Books,1991).

Architectures of Possibility: After Innovative Writing (Washington, D.C.: Raw Dog Screaming Press, 2012).

Rebel Yell: Writing Fiction (San Jose: Cambrian Press, 1998).

Shrapnel: Selected Essays (Grand Rapids, MI: Anti-Oedipus Press, forthcoming December 2023).

[[ there. ]] (Fort Wayne, IN: Anti-Oedipus Press, 2014).

In Memoriam to Postmodernism: Essays on the Avant-Pop, co-edited with Mark Amerika (SDSU Press, 1995).

Lolita: A Janus Text (NY: Twayne, 1995).

Surfing Tomorrow: Essays on the Future of American Fiction (Prairie Village: Potpourri, 1995), editor.

William Gibson (Mercer Island, WA: Starmont House, 1992).

Circus of the Mind in Motion: Postmodernism and the Comic Vision (Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1990).

Ellipse of Uncertainty: An Introduction to Postmodern Fantasy (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1987).

short story collections
How to Unfeel the Dead: New & Selected Fictions (Toronto: Teksteditions, 2014).

Hideous Beauties (Portland, OR: Eraserhead, 2003).

Sewing Shut My Eyes (Normal/Tallahassee: Fiction Collective Two/Black Ice, 2000).

Scherzi, I Believe (La Grande, OR: Wordcraft, 1994).

My Dates With Franz (Amherst, MA: Bluestone Press, 1993).

poetry chapbook
Natural Selections, co-authored with Jeff Worley (Galloway Township, NJ: Still Waters Press, 1993).

Over 100 short stories in Iowa Review, Fiction International, The Literary Review, various anthologies, etc.; translated into Italian, Finnish, and Polish.

Over 30 poems in Willow Springs, DoubleTake, Alaska Quarterly, etc.

Over 80 essays in Review of Contemporary Fiction, Bloomsbury Review, Virginia Quarterly Review, Modern Fiction Studies, Village Voice, various anthologies, etc.

Over 100 reviews in Time Out New York, American Book Review, Electronic Book Review, Postmodern Culture, etc.

200+ readings and presentations in Berlin, London, Paris, Los Angeles, New York, Oslo, San Francisco, Seattle, Portland, etc.

recognition, etc.
N.E.A. Fellowship, 2020; Artist-in-Berlin Grant, 2015-16; Mary Ellen von der Heyden Berlin Prize Fellow at the American Academy, 2013; Mellon International Visiting Senior Scholar, Rhodes University, South Africa, 2013; Guggenheim Fellowship, 2012; N.E.A. Fellowship, 2006; Science Fiction Research Association Pioneer Award, 2003; Chair of Board of Directors at Fiction Collective Two, 2002-2018; Fulbright in Finland, 2000; Idaho State Writer-in-Residence, 1996-1998; Pushcart Prize, 1998; Finalist for 1995 Philip K. Dick Award; etc.

teaching experience
University of Utah
Professor Emeritus
Department of English, Creative Writing Program

University of Utah
Department of English, Creative Writing Program

University of Idaho
Department of English, Creative Writing Program

University of Idaho
Associate Professor (with tenure)

University of Kentucky
Assistant Professor

University of Virginia

University of Iowa