Lawrence Kessenich


Watertown, MA

Author's Bio

Lawrence Kessenich is a fiction writer, poet, playwright, essayist, reviewer, and editor. He has published a number of short stories and won the 2010 Strokestown International Poetry Prize. He has published four books of poetry: Strange News, Before Whose Glory, Age of Wonders, and Pearl. He has also published essays, one of which was featured on NPR’s “This I Believe” and appears in the anthology This I Believe: On Love. His short plays have been produced in New York, Boston, and in Colorado, where he won the People’s Choice Award in a national drama competition. His first novel, Cinnamon Girl, was published in 2016. Kessenich is the co-managing editor of Ibbbetson Street literary magazine. Kessenich was born and raised in Wisconsin in a loving family of nine children. He attended St. Monica's grade school in Whitefish Bay, Messmer High School in the city of Milwaukee, and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He was also briefly in the graduate creative writing at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. After attending the Radcliffe Publishing Course, he spent 10 years in the trade editorial department at Houghton Mifflin in Boston, where he edited Shoeless Joe, the basis for the movie Field of Dreams, and many other fiction and nonfiction books. After leaving book publishing, Kessenich made his living as a technical writer and then as a marketing writer.

Publications & Prizes

Age of Wonders (Big Table Publishing Company, 2016)
Before Whose Glory (FutureCycle Press, 2013)
Strange News (Puddinghouse Press, 2008)
Prizes won: 

Strokestown International Poetry Prize (Ireland). Four nominations for Puschart Prize in Poetry. People's Choice Award at Durango 10-Minute Play Festival.

Personal Favorites

What I'm reading now: 
Application for Release from the Dream by Tony Hoagland, Selected Poems by Jack Gilbert, All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

More Information

Gives readings: 
Travels for readings: 
Identifies as: 
German American
Prefers to work with: 
Fluent in: 
Born in: 
Raised in: 
Milwaukee, WI
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Last update: May 21, 2019