Michael Chabon, best-selling and Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist, is the winner of the 2008 Peggy V. Helmerich Distinguished Author Award. Since 1988, Chabon has written five novels, a novella, two collections of short stories, a young-adult novel, numerous articles and essays, and several screenplays and teleplays, including sharing story credit for "Spider-Man 2." He writes a regular column for the magazine Details.
Chabon is considered by many critics as one of the major literary authors of his generation. According to the Chicago Tribune, "Chabon is a flat-out wonderful writer – evocative and inventive, pointed and poignant." The Los Angeles Times Book Review said, "A loving craftsman and author of superb, seemingly alchemically rendered sentences, Chabon has been producing pitch-perfect, at times even dazzling, fiction."
Chabon believes that three things are required for success as a novelist: talent, luck and discipline. He says, "Discipline is the one element of those three things that you can control, and so that is the one that you have to focus on controlling, and you just have to hope and trust in the other two."
At the age of 37, Chabon won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction for "The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay." The novel also was selected by the American Library Association as one of the Notable Books of 2000 and was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, the PEN/Faulkner Award and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. Set in 1939 in New York City, the novel takes readers into the pulp world of the 1930s and ‘40s through the experiences of two Jewish cousins. American Sammy Klayman is an opportunistic young fellow with a real knack for plotting pulp fiction, while Josef Kavalier, a Czech who has fled the Nazis, complements this storytelling talent with his own rare, bold drawing style. Together they create a Harry Houdini-like comic character in a series called "The Escapist," a superhero who battles World War II enemies on the pages of the comic.
Other works by Chabon include: the 1988 best-selling novel "The Mysteries of Pittsburgh," which actually was his master’s thesis at the University of California-Irvine; his second novel, "Wonder Boys," which also was a best-seller and was made into a critically acclaimed film starring Michael Douglas; "The Final Solution: A Story of Detection," which received the 2005 National Jewish Book Award and also the 2003 Aga Khan Prize for Fiction by The Paris Review; and his latest novels, both released in 2007, "The Yiddish Policemen’s Union" and "Gentlemen of the Road." His young-adult novel, "Summerland," won the 2003 Mythopoeic Fantasy Award for Children’s Literature. His short story collections are "A Model World, and Other Stories," which includes tales previously published in the New Yorker, and "Werewolves in Their Youth."
Chabon was born in 1963 in Washington, D.C. He lives with his wife, Ayelet Waldman, also a novelist, and their children, in Berkeley, Calif.