John Brizzolara

Born in Chicago on December 11, 1950, Brizzolara was a writer since childhood. At age 29, he sold his first two short stories to Weird Tales. His writing appeared in Asimov's Science Fiction, Amazing Stories, Whispers, Weirdbook, and Twilight Zone Magazine. His short fiction has been translated to German, Russian, and Japanese.

In 1987 he published his first novel, Wirecutter, followed by the science-fiction novel Empire's Horizon in 1989. Thunder Moon, a sequel to Wirecutter, soon followed. In 1997 he won the National Conference Media Award for Journalism for a San Diego Magazine story on hate crimes. He reviewed numerous books for the Union-Tribune and the Los Angeles Times. He also wrote for the Chicago Reader, Pages, and San Diego Home Garden & Lifestyle. Brizzolara wrote for the Reader from 1989 to 2013, including a weekly column, TGIF.

John died in his sleep at Father Joe’s Villages on October 11, 2016. He was 65. Brizzolara wrote about his struggles with alcoholism and other ailments to which he succumbed.

Samples of his notable essays can be found in our From the Archives series. Other notable stories include:

Sadness and Strange Endings (Judith Moore interviews Brizzolara)

Set a Needle on My Heart and Play Those Songs of Love and Pain (author's record collection)

Flesh of My Flesh (unending romance of fatherhood)

My Belly (author's aging body)


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