Described in the blogosphere as one of the nation's most underrated writers, Kirby Gann
is the author of the novel Ghosting
(2012), which was included in the "Best of Year" lists from Publishers Weekly
and Shelf Awareness
and a finalist for the Kentucky Book of the Year. He has published two other novels, The Barbarian Parade
(2002), and Our Napoleon in Rags
(2005), and co-edited (with poet Kristin Herbert) the anthology A Fine Excess: Contemporary Literature at Play
, which was a finalist for the ForeWord Magazine
Book of the Year Award (Anthologies). His work has appeared most recently in The Louisville Review, The Oxford American,
and The Southeast Review,
among other journals. Gann is the recipient of an Individual Artist Fellowship and two Professional Assistance Awards from the Kentucky Arts Council. In 2015 he stepped down from the position he held for eighteen years as Managing Editor at Sarabande Books, and now pursues freelance projects in book design, typesetting, editorial, and production management. He teaches in the brief-residency MFA in Writing Program at Spalding University
Kirkby Gann Tittle
(his given name) is a musician and songwriter. Tracks from earlier incarnations (Hipmonk, Jakeleg) are available around this site somewhere.
Both Kirby Gann and Kirkby Tittle live in Louisville, Kentucky, with wife Stephanie, and two dogs.
New York Times Book Review
The NYTBR lends praise to Ghosting
Reading at the Carnegie Center (Lexington, KY) June 5, 2012
Feature in The Courier-Journal
A profile of the author upon the release of Ghosting
A recording of Gann reading from Ghosting
Largehearted Boy Book Notes
Largehearted Boy Blog asks for a "soundtrack" to accompany Ghosting
Southern Literary Review
A fine review praises Ghosting at SLR
Curtis Smith reviews Ghosting at Prime Number
WFPL Profile and Review
Ghosting is linked with Jim Higdon's nonfiction reportage, The Cornbread Mafia. Worth a look.
Flavorpill Picks "Must Reads" for April
Ghosting selected as an "must read" by Flavorpill
"Unfolding with unflinching clarity and moral inevitability, this is a tale of love and loyalty, family and duty, naïveté and duplicity, played out on an amoral landscape of drugs and violence.... Hillbilly noir as literary fiction of the first order
Full Review at Kirkus
Kirkus Reviews Praises Ghosting
GHOSTING receives starred review from Publishers Weekly
"Violent, bloody, and darkly beautiful, this is a fascinating novel depicting the seedy bottom of an America in decline."
Five Questions for Kirby Gann at HTMLGiant
A brief discussion with Kyle Minor about Ghosting.
"In Ghosting, Kirby Gann has created an utterly compelling ode to the fearsome and contradictory desires of his unforgettable characters. Writing in brilliantly sustained licks of prose, Gann gives us flesh-and-blood human beings who cannot escape what they cannot help wanting. Their fate is true, the ride beautiful and dark."
—John Burnham Schwartz, author of Reservation Road and Northwest Corner
“Combining grit and poetry, deep feeling and an unsentimental gaze, Kirby Gann has written a novel as intimate as the stifling locale where it's set and as expansive as the minds and voices of the people ensnared there. Ghosting is dark, funny, unexpected, and populated with characters we immediately recognize even as they avoid cliché.”
—Christopher Sorrentino, author of Trance and Sound on Sound div>
“I finished your novel last night and, damn, my friend, you nailed it. . . . Mister Greuel! What a creation. I had a hard time with this because the book is much, much more than can be described in one or two sentences. But here's what I've got: ‘With a plot as full of twists and turns as an ancient Greek tragedy, Kirby Gann's Ghosting is one of the most beautifully worded and superbly crafted novels about the fateful consequences of being caught up in the criminal life that I have ever read.’ And I’m speaking truth.”
—Donald Ray Pollock, author of The Devil All the Time and Knockemstiff div>
"What a richly imagined world Kirby Gann has wrought in Ghosting. A frightful world of drug running and addiction, but beneath that a story of family and the desire for safety and peace. This novel is full of grit and the yearnings of the human heart. Its carefully drawn characters latched onto me and wouldn't let me go."
—Lee Martin, author of Break the Skin and The Bright Forever div> font>
NEWS ARCHIVE font>
Gann contributed a short essay on how to clarify your own ideas for narrative in the new anthology Now Write! Fiction Writing Exercises from Today's Best Writers and Teachers edited by Sherry Ellis, published by Tarcher.
Our Napoleon in Rags is a nominee for the Kentucky Award in Literature.
Frontiers Magazine, in Los Angeles, named Our Napoleon in Rags one of the Top 5 Novels published in 2005.
Also, at the literary blog Syntax of Things, they've posted an excellent list of what they're calling "underrated writers" — Kirby Gann is on the list, along with many other writers worthy of attention. Check out the site here: Syntax of Things.
Kirby Gann in conversation with novelist John Burnham Schwartz (Reservation Road,The Commoner on the writing process at The Writer's Block Fesitval October 15, 2011