Bret Anthony Johnston

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Bret Anthony Johnston
Bret anthony johnston 2014.jpg
Bret Anthony Johnston at the 2014 Texas Book Festival.
Occupation Short story writer, novelist, essayist, journalist, professor
Nationality American
Genre Fiction
Notable works

Corpus Christi: Stories; Naming the World and Other Exercises for the Creative Writer;

Waiting for Lightning

Bret Anthony Johnston is an American author best known for his multi-award winning debut story collection, Corpus Christi: Stories. He is also the editor of the bestselling Naming the World and Other Exercises for the Creative Writer.


Bret Anthony Johnston is the author of the internationally acclaimed Corpus Christi: Stories (Random House, 2004). Named a Best Book of the Year by The Independent of London and The Irish Times, the collection has received the Southern Review's Annual Short Fiction Award, the Glasgow Prize for Emerging Writers, the Texas Institute of Letters' Debut Fiction Award, the Christopher Isherwood Prize, the James Michener Fellowship, and was shortlisted for Ireland's Frank O'Connor International Short Story Award, "the richest short story prize in the world."

His work appears in magazines such as The Atlantic, Esquire, The Paris Review, Oxford American, and Tin House, and in anthologies such as New Stories from the South: The Year's Best 2003, 2004, 2005, 2008, and 2010, Best American Short Stories, and Prize Stories: the O. Henry Awards. He is a graduate of Miami University and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, and the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellowship. He has written essays for The New York Times Magazine, The New York Times, and NPR's All Things Considered, and he’s been a skateboarder for almost twenty years.

In 2006, the National Book Foundation honored him with a National Book Award for writers under 35.

In 2012, "Waiting for Lightning" premiered at the SXSW Film Festival and was released in theaters nationwide by Samuel Goldywn Films.

Currently, he is Director of Creative Writing at Harvard University.


Johnston in New York, 2013
  • Corpus Christi: Stories, (2004)
  • Naming the World And Other Exercises for the Creative Writer, (editor) (2008)
  • Waiting for Lightning, (screenwriter) (2012)
  • Remember Me Like This, (2014)


  • In 2007, Johnston was named one of Harvard University's "Eight Hottest Braniacs"
  • In 2009, a villain in the Hardy Boys novel X-Plosion, by Franklin W. Dixon, was named after Johnston
  • In 2009, Johnston was inducted as an honorary member of the Harvard Lampoon.

External links[edit]