"I currently have three manuscripts in progress: a novel in the form of linked short stories, a young adult novel set in a fictional town called Twilight, Indiana, and a series of texts comprised of my feedback-marginalia, imagistic thoughts, end notes, etc.-to works written by students and professional writers.
I began writing stories mostly because the works of other writers moved me-and because I wanted to be able to similarly move some potential reader who might find something I'd written in her hands. I am drawn to image and syntax and story, to the inexplicable thing that happens when our brains begin to negotiate and make sense of the language of others."
Years at Knox: 2005-present
M.F.A., 2005, Southern Illinois University at Carbondale.
B.A., 1998, Monmouth College.
Fiction writing, creative nonfiction, modern and contemporary literature, flash fiction, the short-short story, graphic novels.
Winner, 2012 John Simmons Short Fiction Award, Juried by Jim Shepard, University of Iowa Press.
Finalist, 2011 Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Fiction.
Finalist, 2011 Mary McCarthy Prize in Fiction.
Philip Green Wright-Lombard College Prize for Distinguished Teaching, 2010.
Finalist, 2009 Mary McCarthy Prize in Fiction.
Tennessee Williams Scholarship, Sewanee Writers' Conference, 2007.
Work-Study ("Waiter") Scholarship, Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, 2007.
Illinois Arts Council Fellowship in Prose, 2006.
Tell Everyone I Said Hi, University of Iowa Press, forthcoming.
Phantoms, a chapbook, Origami Zoo Press, 2010.
Essays and stories have appeared in about forty print and online journals including, McSweeney's Quarterly, Esquire, The Sun, Crab Orchard Review, Five Chapters, The Rumpus, Barrelhouse, The Collagist, Fifth Wednesday Journal, Sycamore Review, Gulf Stream, Versal, New South, SmokeLong Quarterly, and Wigleaf. Work has been anthologized in You Must Be This Tall to Ride: Contemporary Writers Take You Inside the Story and in New Stories from the Midwest 2011.
Readings at the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, the Sewanee Writers' Conference, Chatham University, the University of Alabama, and Southern Illinois University Carbondale.
Campus & Community Involvement
Faculty Advisor for Catch, beginning Fall 2012.
Faculty Advisor for Writers' Forum, 2007-2012.
What Students Say
"Chad Simpson is brilliant and generous and funny. He has a knack for really getting at the heart of whatever story you're trying to tell--and he always meets your work on its own terms. Students in his classes are treated as fellow writers, equals, and Chad always makes himself available for whatever help a student might need, in or out of class. He wants to see you succeed."
-Sam Martone, Creative Writing Major
Through his music capstone project, Nate Beck -- who has a minor in business and management -- finds that the processes of brand management and music composition have more in common than you'd probably expect.
Baby talk is serious business for senior Megan Beney, a double major in music and anthropology and sociology. Her Honors research focuses on the musical qualities of the ways that people talk to infants.
Leading up to a worldwide event -- Gun Control Theatre Action Week, May 27 through June 2 -- a play by Knox College theatre professor Neil Blackadder is selected for a new collection, "24 Gun Control Plays."