Dan Chaon

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Dan Chaon
Dan chaon 2009.jpg
Chaon at the 2009 Texas Boox Festival
Born 1964
Sidney, Nebraska
Occupation Novelist, short story writer
Citizenship United States
Alma mater Northwestern University
Syracuse University
Genre Fiction
Notable works Await Your Reply
Among the Missing
Notable awards 2006 Academy Award for Literature, American Academy of Arts and Letters
Finalist, National Magazine Award in Fiction
Finalist, National Book Award

Dan Chaon is an American writer. He is the author of three short story collections and two novels, including Among the Missing, which was a 2001 finalist for the National Book Award. Chaon's stories have appeared in Best American Short Stories, The Pushcart Prize Anthologies, and The O. Henry Prize Stories. He teaches at Oberlin College, where he is the Pauline Delaney Professor of Creative Writing and Literature.[1][2][3]


Chaon was adopted and grew up in a village of 20 people outside of Sidney, Nebraska. His father was a construction worker and his mother was a stay-at-home mom. As a middle schooler, Chaon wrote a fan letter to Ray Bradbury, beginning a correspondence that continued for several years. Chaon graduated from Northwestern and received his MA from Syracuse. He was married to the late writer Sheila Schwartz and has two sons. He lives in Cleveland Heights, Ohio and teaches creative writing at Oberlin College, where he has worked with such students as Ishmael Beah, Emma Straub, and Lena Dunham.[3][4][5][6]


Chaon's first novel was You Remind Me of Me (2004). His short-story collections Fitting Ends (1996) and Among the Missing (2001) were both well-received; the latter was named as one of the year's ten best books by the American Library Association, as a notable book of the year by The New York Times, and was a 2001 finalist for the National Book Award. Await Your Reply, a novel published in 2009, was described by the Los Angeles Times as a "riveting thriller, chock-full of plot twists, and a sober meditation on the erosion of identity in the age of technology." Chaon's 2012 short story collection, Stay Awake, was a finalist for The Story Prize.[7]

Chaon's short stories have won the Pushcart Prize and the O. Henry Award (of the O. Henry Prize Stories) and have been included in the Best American Short Stories of 1996 and 2003. He was awarded the 2006 Academy Award in Literature from The American Academy of Arts and Letters.[8]

In a 2017 review of Ill Will, Chaon's third novel, Publishers Weekly wrote: "With impressive skill, across multiple narratives that twine, fracture, and reset, Chaon expertly realizes his singular vision of American dread." [9]



  • You Remind Me of Me (2004)
  • Await Your Reply (2009)
  • Ill Will (2017)

Short story collections[edit]

  • Fitting Ends (1996)
  • Among the Missing (2001)
  • Stay Awake (2012)


  1. ^ Mosle, Sarah (July 10, 2004). "There's No Place That's Home". New York Times. Retrieved May 30, 2016. 
  2. ^ Charles, Ron (August 26, 2009). "Dan Chaon's 'Await Your Reply'". Washington Post. Retrieved May 30, 2016. 
  3. ^ a b Barbash, Tom. "Dan Chaon (Writer)". The Believer (Fall 2015). Retrieved June 13, 2016. 
  4. ^ Dirda, Michael Emerson (January 20, 2010). "Celebrated Author and Oberlin Professor Dan Chaon Makes his Mark on Aspiring Writers". oberlin.edu. Oberlin. Retrieved June 13, 2016. 
  5. ^ Mead, Rebecca (November 15, 2010). "Downtown's Daughter". The New Yorker. Retrieved June 13, 2016. 
  6. ^ Dirda, Michael Emerson. "Want to write? Celebrated author Dan Chaon suggests reading". Oberlin Alumni. Oberlin Alumni Magazine. Retrieved June 13, 2016. 
  7. ^ Almond, Steve (August 23, 2009). "'Await Your Reply: A Novel' by Dan Chaon". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved June 13, 2016. 
  8. ^ "National Book Award Authors". nationalbook.org. National Book Foundation. Retrieved June 13, 2016. 
  9. ^ "Ill Will". Publishers Weekly. March 1, 2016. Retrieved 28 February 2017. 

External links[edit]