matthew vollmer
writer. teacher. editor.
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My second book, inscriptions for headstones, will be available from Outpost19 in October 2012.

"This is the loudest, liveliest cemetery you will ever encounter, teeming with voices of those who refuse to rest in peace. If you are looking for aliens, basketball phenoms, Lakota Indians, GIFs, ladybug infestations, mescaline, puppets, God, the Orion nebula, CGI, guys named Gary, Barthelmean fathers and sons, or yellowjackets carrying venom extracted from dead snake heads, you will find them all here. One part prayer book, one part party game, inscriptions for headstones is exquisitely, exactingly appreciative of life's most potent, fleeting and confounding moments." - Wendy Brenner, author of Phone Calls from the Dead: Stories

With David Shields, I am the co-editor of Fakes: An Anthology of Pseudo Interviews, Faux-Lectures, Quasi-Letters, "Found" Texts, and Other Fraudulent Artifacts (forthcoming in fall 2012 from W. W. Norton).

"Cleverness abounds in the 40 subversions of terms of service, disclaimers, how-to manuals, self-help books, catalogue copy, legal documents, and other quotidian genres..." from Publisher's Weekly review.

My first book, Future Missionaries of America, was published in the U.S. by MacAdam Cage. The paperback is now available via Salt Publishing.

from the New York Times Book Review:

"Vollmer's irresistible first collection offers a large cast of yearning characters: some lonely, some lost, some in love and some who, landing on the other side of life's devastations--the loss of spouses, children, parents, lovers, friends, money--now find their grief restive and revolting. Emotions may be inexpressible in these stories, but they do find expression, if not through words then through actions. After his father dies, a teenage boy digs holes in the earth until his palms blister. A woman, about to pursue her unfaithful husband, dives underwater again and again for lost car keys. The distraught father of a slain little girl begins following another child he thinks might be her. Despite their realist surfaces and character-driven narratives, these stories have an uneasy relationship with the literary epiphany and can pull up just short of clarifying utterance. Often characters will work toward resolution only to discover that none is forthcoming; and yet, like boxers begging not to have the fight called, they go on. Vollmer writes with equal dexterity about teenagers and adults, men and women, atheists and believers, Goths and jocks, dropouts and doctors--less interested in getting down any particular demographic, it would seem, than in revealing the humans beneath. Expertly structured and utterly convincing, these stories represent the arrival of a strong new voice."

Read a longer description here.

Order it on Amazon or at The Book Depository.