J.J. Steinfeld

An Unauthorized Biography
of Being
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In the short fictions of An Unauthorized Biography of Being, J.J. Steinfeld continues to chronicle the enigma of modern life as he has for over thirty years. As Ian Colford said of his previous collection Madhouses in Heaven, Castles in Hell, “these are fearless, funny, nightmarish and wildly entertaining stories of existential crisis and the struggle for clarity.” J.J. Steinfeld crafts gripping and sometimes absurd drama out of our everyday-life attempts to find essential human connections in an unyielding world.

J. J. Steinfeld’s latest collection is short fiction as incantation. There is something sinister, playful, and mysterious on nearly every page of An Unauthorized Biography of Being. These dreamlike pieces — ranging from the depths of the existential to the heights of otherworldly speculative fiction — don’t merely stare into the abyss. They interrogate it.
— Mark Sampson, author of Sad Peninsula and The Secrets Men Keep

A maestro of the Canadian short story, J. J. Steinfeld gathers together in An Unauthorized Biography of Being more than a hundred of his minimalist-leaning short fictions, a form whose brevity is in tune with our fast-paced, digitally preoccupied world. Yet these stories, grouped under six thematic headings, range in expansiveness from “Philosophical Thoughts” to “You Remember Sitting Across from God,” “The Comings and Goings of Ordinariness” to “What Will Today’s Thoughts Be About?,” and from “Uncertainty” to “Otherworldliness.” This final section begins with four tales that resemble Aesop’s Fables and bear an ecological lesson; and then moves into darkly fanciful speculative fiction “hovering between the absurd and the existential.”
— Professor Sandra Singer, editor of J. J. Steinfeld: Essays On His Works

Fiction writer, poet, and playwright J. J. Steinfeld lives on Prince Edward Island, where he is patiently waiting for Godot’s arrival and a phone call from Kafka. While waiting, he has published seventeen books: two novels, twelve short story collections, and three poetry collections, along with two short-fiction chapbooks and three poetry chapbooks. More than 400 of his short stories and 800 poems have appeared in anthologies and periodicals in every Canadian province and internationally in eighteen countries, and over fifty of his one-act plays and a handful of full-length plays have been performed in Canada and the United States.

ISBN 978-1-77171-174-6
238 pages
5.5 x 8.5
Now available

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