Derrick C. Brown
“There's something that happens when you read Derrick Brown, a rekindling of faith in the weird, hilarious, shocking, beautiful power of words. When you read any of his work...you yourself are a bit more alive.”-New York Times
“A wit as sharp as Sedaris, a sensibility as poignant as Sexton, Brown manages to blur the lines between cult writer and poet with remarkable ease and grace.”-Anthem Magazine
“Derrick Brown’s work–both vibrant on and off the page–sizzles with jolting images and blasts of humor, yet retains a deep compassion at its core. He has a heart the size of a Mack truck, but we’re not sure who’s behind the wheel.”-Jeffrey McDaniel
From Austin, Texas, Derrick C. Brown is the winner of the 2013 Texas Book of the Year for Poetry. Continuing his vision to bring poetry to non-traditional audiences, he has been touring with his poetry to open up for comedians such as Mike Birbiglia, Euguene Mirman, Kurt Braunohler, Jon Benjamin and David Cross. He first discovered poetry in a foxhole when he was enlisted as a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne. His most recent collection, Strange Light, was commissioned by The Nation of Holland for the Noord Nederlandse Dans Collective to perform with 14 dancers, an orchestra, and Brown reciting live. He began touring nationally with his poetry after his honorable discharge and has performed at over two thousand venues and universities, including national and international literary festivals such as Berlin Literautre Festival, Glastonbury, and AWP. He has toured with poets Anis Mojgani and Buddy Wakefield in the spoken word sensation known as the Poetry Revival, and with poet and actress Amber Tamblyn in a re-occuring show called The Lazers of Sexcellance. He is popular for blending other arts forms with poetry. The short film for his poem, A Finger, Two Dots, Then Me, won over 40 awards on the 2012 film festival circuit.
Watch the award-winning film A Finger, Two Dots, Then Me
Brown toured Europe opening for the band Cold War Kids, chronicled in the documentary poetry concert film You Belong Everywhere. He has collaborated with comedian David Cross, All Tomorrow's Parties with The Flaming Lips, Delta Spirit, Richard Swift of The Shins (Poetry and music), and with painter Blaine Fontana. Brown is known for being an innovator in curating unique and creative poetry adventures like the Double Decker Poetry Bus Party and poetry shows at sea for Poetry Cruise. Brown performed his poetry on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, as well as for the Best American Contemporary Poetry Concert series, The Drums Inside Your Chest. He has curated literature festivals such as the Word x Word festival in Massachusetts. He runs the shelf life poetry project that sends damaged poetry books to homeless shelters and teen programs.
Brown is also a former weatherman and gondolier. He is the founder of Write Bloody Publishing, an independent book publisher in Austin, TX, whose main principle is that all authors must tour and write as well on the page as they perform onstage. Write Bloody's concept is that poets should tour and promote themselves like rock bands, and that the publisher should be the source of energy for the revitalization of live poetry in America.
About STRANGE LIGHT (Poetry, 2013)
Derrick Brown's fourth collection of poetry and short stories is a unrelenting machine of honesty that has been called his finest collection of new work. Strange Light takes us back to the docks, to a violent drama class and boring prom, an undersea conversation with Jacques Cousteau, and into his famous romantic bursts of verse. The epic poem, "Strange Light," anchors this collection as one of the most inventive and potent collections of modern American poetry. About.com called his 2009 collection Scandalabra, one of the best books of the year. Everything hilarious and stirring is illuminated.