An American creative writing professor and novelist, he is known for such works as Publish and Perish: Three Tales of Tenure and Terror; The Lecturer's Tale; King's of Infinite Space, and Next. His debut novel, The Wild Colonial Boy, is set in Northern Ireland and deals with the subject of terrorism.
After graduating from the University of Michigan with a degree in philosophy, he studied at the famed Iowa Writers' Workshop.
His essays have been published in The Washington Post, The New York Times, and The Boston Review.
He was born and raised in Michigan. He later settled in Texas, where he taught at the University of Texas-Austin.
He and Douglas Unger both studied at the Iowa Writers' Workshop.