Donald Barthelme was an award-winning short story writer and novelist from Philadelphia.
Born in April 1931 to two academic and professional parents, Barthelme began writing as a teen for newspapers. He and his father had many arguments about what area of writing Donald was interested in, with particular disdain for Donald’s love for postmodern literature.
Aged 30, Barthelme had his first short story published while working as director of the Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston. Eventually the writer went on to publish over 100 short stories. His strict postmodern style, spattered with non-sequiturs and playful use of language has created waves among both traditional and postmodern writers and critics.
Barthelme’s influences include Samuel Beckett, Franz Kafka, and Gabriel Garcia Marquez. He was described in Time magazine as an author with “Kafka’s purity of language and some of Beckett’s grim humour.”