W. P. Kinsella
Bio: Canadian author W.P. Kinsella is somewhat of a late bloomer. Born in 1935 on a farm in Northern Alberta, Kinsella didn't receive his B.A. in creative writing until the age of 39. Before that he held a series of odd jobs, including working as a taxi driver, selling insurance, and managing a restaurant. He began writing short fiction at the age of 17 but didn't see public success until the publication of 1979's Dance Me Outside. He became a sensation with 1982's Shoeless Joe, a novel about an Iowa man who digs up his cornfield in order to build a baseball park. The novel, an elaboration of his short story, "Shoeless Joe Jackson Comes to Iowa," won the Houghton Mifflin Literary Fellowship and was made into the incredibly popular film Field of Dreams (1989). Kinsella greatly admired the film, although his other experiences with Hollywood have been less than positive.
Many of Kinsella's works focus on baseball, the game he loves and grew up watching. Other works of his include The Thrill of the Grass (1985), The Iowa Baseball Confederacy (1996), and Magic Time (2001). His other great subject is Native Americans, the focus of his novels The Moccasin Telegraph (1985) and The Fencepost Chronicles (1987). W.P. Kinsella has taught creative writing at the University of Calgary for many years and lives in Canada.