Steven Kotler

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Steven Kotler
Born May 25, 1967
Occupation Writer, entrepreneur
Genre Nonfiction
Notable works The Rise of Superman
A Small Furry Prayer
West of Jesus
Stealing Fire

Steven Kotler is an American author, journalist, and entrepreneur. His articles have appeared in over 70 publications, including The New York Times Magazine, LA Times, Wired, GQ, Discover, Popular Science, Outside, Men’s Journal, Details and National Geographic Adventure. He is best known for his non-fiction books, including the New York Times bestseller Abundance, A Small Furry Prayer, West of Jesus, and Bold.[1][2]

Early history[edit]

Kotler was born in Chicago, Illinois. After attending Orange High School in Cleveland, Ohio, he graduated from the University of Wisconsin, Madison in 1989 with degrees in English and Creative Writing. In 1993, he received an MA in Creative Writing from The Johns Hopkins University.


Rancho de Chihuahua[edit]

In 2007, alongside his wife, Joy Nicholson, Kotler co-founded the Rancho de Chihuahua dog sanctuary in Chimayo, New Mexico.[3][4] Rancho de Chihuahua specializes in hospice care and long term rehabilitation for special needs dogs.[5] Kotler's experience with Rancho de Chihuahua inspired his 2010 book A Small Furry Prayer: Dog Rescue and the Meaning of Life.[6]

The Reporter’s Gym[edit]

Kotler is the co-founder, alongside the Los Angeles Lakers and 826 LA, of the Reporter’s Gym, a sportswriting camp for inner-city school children. The program ran for 3 years, between 1997-2000.

Flow Genome Project[edit]

Kotler is the co-founder and Director of Research for the Flow Genome Project.[7] The Flow Genome Project is a trans-disciplinary, international organization committed to mapping the genome of Flow by 2020.[7]


Kotler’s books and articles often deal with the intersection of science and culture, and make frequent and extended use of academic work, particularly in the areas of neuroscience, evolutionary theory, ethology, psychopharmacology and psychology. He has written a total of 4 non-fiction books Abundance, A Small Furry Prayer, West of Jesus, and The Rise of Superman, and 1 novel The Angle Quickest for Flight.[8]

A Small Furry Prayer was a Wall Street Journal and SF Chronicle Bestseller.[9][10] Angle Quickest for Flight was a SF Chronicle Bestseller and won the William L. Crawford IAFA Fantasy Award.[9]

He also writes "Far Frontiers," a blog about technology and innovation for Forbes and "The Playing Field," a blog about the science of sport and culture for Psychology Today.[11][12]


In 2012 Kotler published Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think with Peter H. Diamandis. The book revolves around the idea that the world is getting better and in the future most people of the world will have access to clean water, food, energy, health care, education, and everything else that is necessary for a first world standard of living, thanks to technological innovation.[1] The authors argue progress in artificial intelligence, robotics, infinite computing, ubiquitous broadband networks, digital manufacturing, nanomaterials, synthetic biology, and many other growing technologies will enable the human race to make greater gains in the following two decades than in the previous two hundred years. By doing so, the authors suggest humans will have the ability to meet and exceed the basic needs of every man, woman, and child on the planet.[13]

Abundance debuted at #1 on both and Barnes & Noble's bestseller lists, and at #2 on the New York Times bestseller list.[2][14] It remained on the NYT bestseller list for nine weeks, gathering reviews and profiles from outlets including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, TIME, BusinessWeek, Wired, Slate, and others.[15][16][17][18][19] Abundance was voted one of the "Top 5 Must Read Business Books of the Year" by Fortune Magazine.[20]

The Rise of Superman[edit]

In 2014, Kotler announced his next book, The Rise of Superman: Decoding the Science of Ultimate Human Performance. The book explores the state of consciousness known as "flow", an optimal state in which humans perform and feel their best.[21] The book includes examples from adventure athletes including big wave surfer Laird Hamilton, skater Danny Way, and big mountain snowboarders Travis Rice and Jeremy Jones.[22] The Rise of Superman explains how extreme athletes are accelerating their flow states to perform better and how people can use the same tactics to accelerate performance in everyday tasks.[21]


In February 2015, Kotler published Bold: How to Go Big, Create Wealth, and Impact the World, his second book with Peter Diamandis.[23] The book discusses the exponential advancement of technology and teaches entrepreneurs how to thrive in such an environment by being nimble and resilient.[24] Bold debuted on the New York Times bestseller list and remained on the list for six weeks, reaching #6 overall.[25][26] Since its release, Bold has been reviewed by the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Financial Times, and others.[23][24][27][28] It was named one of the top 25 books read by corporate America in 2015.[29]


Kotler's next book, Tomorrowland: Our Journey From Science Fiction To Science Fact, was published in May 2015.[30]



  1. ^ a b GERTNER, JON. "Plenty to Go Around ‘Abundance,’ by Peter H. Diamandis and Steven Kotler". New York Times. 
  2. ^ a b Diamandis, Peter. "New book by Peter Diamandis and Steven Kotler, Abundance, debuts #1 on Amazon and Barnes & Noble". Kurzweilai. 
  3. ^ "The dog rescuer". The Guardian. 
  4. ^ Diamond, Wendy. "No Pouts On These Snouts at the Rancho de Chihuahua". Animal Fair. 
  5. ^ "Sick Puppies". Outside Magazine. 
  6. ^ "A Small Furry Prayer: Dog Rescue and the Meaning of Life". Rancho de Chihuahua. 
  7. ^ a b "The Team". Flow Genome Project. 
  8. ^ "Bio: Steven Kotler". Discovery. 
  9. ^ a b "Steven Kotler". The Guild Agency. 
  11. ^ "Steven Kotler: Far Frontiers". Forbes. 
  12. ^ "EXPERTS: Steven Kotler". Psychology Today. 
  13. ^ SHERMER, MICHAEL. "Defying the Doomsayers". Wall Street Journal. 
  14. ^ "Bestsellers: March 11th". New York Times. 
  15. ^ "Bestsellers: April 29, 2012". New York Times. 
  16. ^ Mayo, Keenan. "Peter H. Diamandis and Steven Kotler’s Essential Business Reads". Businessweek. 
  17. ^ Kotler, Steven. "Why You Should Be Optimistic About the Future". Wired. 
  18. ^ Kotler, Steven. "Print Your Own Prosthetic Limb". Slate. 
  19. ^ Walsh, Bryan. "TED Talks: Peter Diamandis on Why Things Are Getting Better All the Time". TIME. 
  20. ^ "The 5 must-read business books of the year". Fortune Magazine. 
  21. ^ a b "THE RISE OF SUPERMAN Decoding the Science of Ultimate Human Performance". Kirkus Reviews. 
  22. ^ Bradstreet, Kailee. "WATCH: NEW TRAILER FOR BOOK ‘THE RISE OF SUPERMAN’". TransWorld. 
  23. ^ a b Broughton, Philip Delves Go Big Or Go Home Wall Street Journal. May 7, 2015
  24. ^ a b Wadhwa, Vivek Book review: Peter Diamandis’s ‘Bold’ a reminder of how entrepreneurs will control the world’s fate Washington Post. May 7, 2015
  25. ^ Best Sellers March 15, 2015 New York Times. May 7, 2015
  26. ^ Best Sellers March 29, 2015 New York Times. May 7, 2015
  27. ^ Waters, Richard Review: ‘Bold’ by Peter Diamandis and Stephen Kotler Financial Times. May 7, 2015
  28. ^ Knee, Jonathan A. Business Books Reveal a Billionaire Obsession New York Times. May 7, 2015
  29. ^ Top 25: What corporate America is reading, April 2015 Centre Daily Times. May 7, 2015
  30. ^ Tomorrowland: Our Journey From Science Fiction To Science Fact Singularity Hub. May 7, 2015
  31. ^ Tomorrowland: Our Journey From Science Fiction To Science Fact, Forbes

External links[edit]