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Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Zero In On Your Audience

 “I find you write with one person in mind. Usually for me that one person is my wife, because she's my most severe critic and understands best what I'm trying to do.” – Jonathan Carroll

Born in New York City on this date in 1949, Carroll is primarily known for works that may be labeled magic realism, slipstream or contemporary fantasy, although he says he’s never really thought of himself as a fantasy writer.  


The son of an actress and a film director, he graduated from Rutgers and then gravitated to Europe, settling in Austria where he’s lived since the 1970s.   There, in Vienna, he’s combined successful teaching and writing careers, teaching at the American International School and turning out many award-winning pieces.

Carroll's short story, "Friend's Best Man,” won the World Fantasy Award, and his novel, Outside the Dog Museum won the British Fantasy Award.  His collection of short stories, The Woman Who Married A Cloud: Collected Stories, earned the coveted Bram Stoker Award, and his short story "Uh-Oh City" won the French Grand Prix de l'Imaginaire.  Carroll has been a runner-up for numerous other World Fantasy Awards, Hugo, and British Fantasy Awards.  To date, he’s penned 17 novels, half-dozen novellas, 3 short story collections, and one nonfiction book. 

“I write about what interests me,” he said.  “It's very dangerous when you try to satisfy an audience.”


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