John Jeremiah Sullivan
John Jeremiah Sullivan (born 1974) is an American writer, musician, teacher, and editor. He is a contributing writer for The New York Times Magazine, a contributing editor of Harper's Magazine, and the southern editor of The Paris Review. In 2014, he edited The Best American Essays, a collection in which his work has been featured in previous years. He has also served on the faculty of Columbia University, Sewanee: The University of the South, and other institutions.
His first book, Blood Horses: Notes of a Sportswriter's Son, was published in 2004. It is part personal reminiscence, part elegy for his father, and part investigation into the history and culture of the thoroughbred racehorse.
Sullivan's essay "Mister Lytle: An Essay", originally published in The Paris Review, won a number of awards and was anthologized in Pulphead. Sullivan recounts how he lived with Andrew Nelson Lytle, when Lytle was in his 90s, helping him with house chores and learning some wisdom about writing and life.
His original music appears on the self-titled album Life of Saturdays.
In 2017, he helped lead a small group of 8th-grade students on a scavenger hunt to resurrect lost copies of The Daily Record, the African–American newspaper at the center of a white supremacist coup d'état and massacre that occurred in his adopted home town of Wilmington, NC, in 1898. He and his team located seven total copies, all of which are now digitized and available for view via the N.C. Digital Heritage Project.
Sullivan is married to Dr. Mariana Johnson, a film scholar and professor. They have two daughters.
- 2003 Eclipse Award, Blood Horses
- 2003 National Magazine Award, Feature Writing
- 2004 Whiting Award, Nonfiction
- 2011 National Magazine Award, Essays and Criticism, "Mister Lytle. An Essay" (The Paris Review)
- 2011 Pushcart Prize, Pushcart XXXV, "Mister Lytle. An Essay" (The Paris Review)
- 2014 James Beard Foundation’s MFK Fisher Distinguished Writing Award, for "I placed a Jar in Tennessee," published in Lucky Peach.
- 2015 ASCAP Foundation Taylor/Virgil Thomson Award
- 2015 Windham–Campbell Literature Prize (Non-Fiction) valued at $150,000
- 2016 Whiting Creative Nonfiction Grant, to complete The Prime Minister of Paradise
- 2018 Guggenheim Fellowship
- Blood Horses: Notes of a Sportswriter's Son, Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2004.
- Pulphead: Essays, Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2011.
- "Too Much Information", on David Foster Wallace, 2011.
- "The Last Wailer", on Bunny Wailer, 2011.
- "Back in the Day", on Michael Jackson, 2009.
- "The Final Comeback of Axl Rose", on Axl Rose, 2006.
- "Upon This Rock", on a visit to a Christian rock festival, 2004.
- "Good-Bye to All That", on a visit to the Gulf Coast, post-Hurricane Katrina, 2005.
- "He Shall Be Levi", on a visit to Alaska, to meet Levi Johnston, 2009.
- "American Grotesque". on the Tea Party movement, 2010.
- "Violence of the Lambs". on the coming war between animals and humans, 2011.
- "Peyton's Place". on living in the house used for the filming of One Tree Hill, 2011.
- The New Yorker
- "The Ill-Defined Plot," on the history of the essay, 2014.
- "David Foster Wallace's Perfect Game," 2014
- Harper's Magazine
- "Horseman, Pass By: Glory, grief, and the race for the Triple Crown", 2003.
- "A Rawness of Seeing: Denis Johnson writes the big novel" writes the big novel", 2007.
- "Unknown Bards: The blues becomes transparent about itself", included in Best Music Writing, 2009.
- New York Magazine
- "Art-Shaped Box", on Nirvana, 2004.
- "Dear Heather', on Leonard Cohen, 2004.
- "My Front Pages", on Bob Dylan, 2004.
- The New York Times Magazine
- "You Blow My Mind. Hey, Mickey!", on Disney World, 2011.
- "My Debt to Ireland" on Ireland's Future, 2012, included in The Best American Essays, 2013
- "How William Faulkner Tackled Race — and Freed the South From Itself" on William Faulkner, 2012.
- "Venus and Serena Against the World" on Venus Williams and Serena Williams, 2012.
- "Where is Cuba Going?", on Cuba's future, included in The Best American Travel Writing, 2013.
- "The Ballad of Geeshie and Elvie", about blues singers Geeshie Wiley and Elvie Thomas, 2014.
- "‘Shuffle Along’ and the Lost History of Black Performance in America,” 2016.
- “How Prince Got His Name,” 2016.
- The Paris Review
- “Guy Davenport, The Art of Fiction No. 174,” interview, 2002
- "Mister Lytle", an essay, 2010.
- "Unnamed Caves", on American cave art, 2011.
- “The Princes: A Reconstruction,” 2012
The Oxford American
- “That Don’t Get Him Back Again,” 2010
- “That Chop on the Upbeat,” 2013
- “Baby Boy Born Birthplace Blues,” 2016
- "Pulp Fever", Daniel Riley, GQ, November 3, 2011.
- Pulphead, Copyright page, front matter.
- "Middle Schoolers Help Transcribe, Digitize Rare Historical Newspapers". lj.libraryjournal.com. Retrieved 2018-01-29.
- "Prize Citation for John Jeremiah Sullivan". Windham–Campbell Literature Prize. February 24, 2015. Retrieved February 25, 2015.
- "2016 Whiting Creative Nonfiction Grantee: John Jeremiah Sullivan". Whiting.org. Retrieved 24 January 2018.