|Occupation||Short fiction writer, poet|
|Notable work(s)||The Coast of Chicago|
Stuart Dybek (born 1942) is an American writer.
Life and work
Dybek was born in Chicago, Illinois and raised in Chicago's Little Village and Pilsen neighborhoods in the 1950s and early 1960s. Dybek graduated from St. Rita of Cascia High School in 1959. Dybek earned an MFA from the Iowa Writers' Workshop at the University of Iowa and has an MA in literature from Loyola University Chicago.
Dybek's father immigrated to the U.S. from Poland and took the job as a foreman at International Harvester; his mother worked as a truck dispatcher. Dybek has two brothers, Tom a therapist and actor living in New York City and David, who are the inspiration for some of his stories. His son, Nick Dybek, is an author. . He and his wife Caren Dybek, a retired English school teacher, live in Kalamazoo.
He currently teaches at Northwestern University after more than 30 years teaching at Western Michigan University, where he remains an Adjunct Professor of English and a member of the permanent faculty of the renowned Prague Summer Program. He writes about his childhood neighborhoods and the ethnic shift that occurred when they went from being populated with Poles and Czechs toward the primarily Hispanic areas of the city that still remain to this day. He is also a contributing editor at The Alaska Quarterly Review. Dybek's literary works have been recognized and highlighted at Michigan State University in their Michigan Writers Series.
His two collections of poems are Brass Knuckles (University of Pittsburgh Press, 1979) and Streets in Their Own Ink (Farrar, 2004). His fiction includes Childhood and Other Neighborhoods, The Coast of Chicago, and most recently I Sailed With Magellan, a novel-in-stories. His work is frequently anthologized and appears regularly in magazines such as Harper's, The New Yorker, Atlantic Monthly, Poetry, Tin House, Ploughshares, and Triquarterly.
In 2004, his collection, The Coast of Chicago, was the “One Book, One Chicago” selection. “One Book” is a program in which the selected book is read in libraries and high schools throughout the city. Also in 2004, I Sailed With Magellan was awarded the prize in adult fiction from the Society of Midland Authors. The book was selected as a New York Times Notable Book and cited as an American Library Association Notable Book of 2005. One of the stories, “Breasts,” appears in the 2004 Best American Short Stories.
Dybek's awards include a Lannan Prize, a PEN/Malamud Award (1995), a Whiting Writers' Award, a Guggenheim, and numerous O. Henry Prizes. On September 25, 2007, Dybek was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship. One day later, he was awarded the 2007 Rea Award for the Short Story, a $30,000 annual prize given for "originality and influence on the genre." He appears in both The Best American Short Stories and The Best American Poetry series.
- New York Times review of Coast of Chicago, June 15, 2005
- Short Story: If I Vanished in The New Yorker, July 9, 2007
- Stuart Dybek Resource Page at Chicago Public Library Website
- Stuart Dybek interview on writing by The Writing Disorder
- Stuart Dybek Bio by Lannan Foundation
- Stuart Dybek Bio by Western Michigan University
- Stuart Dybek Bio by Northwestern University