PERSONAL: Married; wife's name Megan. Education: Knox College, B.A., 1997; Iowa State University, M.A., 1999; University of Alabama, M.F.A., 2002.
ADDRESSES: Home—MI. Office—Department of Writing, Grand Valley State University, Campus Dr., Allendale, MI 49401-9403. E-mail—[email protected]
CAREER: Grand Valley State University, assistant professor of writing; New Michigan Press, Grand Rapids, MI, editor.
Other Electricities: Stories, Sarabande Books (Louisville, KY), 2005.
Vacationland (poems), Tupelo Press (Dorset, VT), 2005.
Contributor of stories, essays, and poems to periodicals, including North American Review, Fence, Gulf Coast, and Boston Review. Editor of magazine Diagram.
SIDELIGHTS: Ander Monson is a writer, editor, and teacher of creative writing in Michigan. He grew up in that state's Upper Peninsula, and later lived briefly in Iowa, the American South, and Saudi Arabia. Monson's book Other Electricities: Stories has the scope of a novel but is told in a series of short stories. It takes place on the Keweenaw Peninsula, a remote area in the far north of Michigan that juts out into Lake Superior. Jim Dwyer, a reviewer for Library Journal, noted that even the cold, icy weather of northern Michigan is vividly evoked in this collection of "heartbreakingly poignant interconnected stories." The main character, whose name is not revealed, has suffered through the death of his mother and his girlfriend, along with several other traumatic events. The stories in the book combine to create "vibrant, poetic, brilliantly original fiction," concluded Dwyer. A Publishers Weekly reviewer was also enthusiastic, calling Other Electricities "a glittering mosaic" and concluding: "Monson's is an original new voice, and this poignant, lyrical collection conjures a powerful sense of place." Martha Kinney praised Monson's work in Artforum International as possessing "a spectral beauty," and added: "His lyric prose exists in the energized synapse between fiction and poetry."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Artforum International, April, 2005, Martha Kinney, review of Other Electricities: Stories, p. S51.
Kirkus Reviews, March 15, 2005, review of Other Electricities, p. 309.
Library Journal, July 1, 2005, Jim Dwyer, review of Other Electricities, p. 74.
Publishers Weekly, April 4, 2005, review of Other Electricities, p. 42.
Other Electricities Web site, http://www.otherelectricities.com/ (August 29, 2005).