Wayne Johnson is the author of five critically-acclaimed novels: The Snake Game (Knopf), Don’t Think Twice (Crown/Harmony), Six Crooked Highways (Crown/Harmony), and The Devil You Know (Shaye Areheart Books). Under the pseudonym Albertine Strong, Johnson published Deluge (Crown/Harmony).
Among Johnson’s public accolades have been a listing as a London Times bestseller for The Snake Game; three Pulitzer nominations (for Deluge, Don’t Think Twice, and The Devil You Know); New York Times Notable Book citations (for Deluge and Don’t Think Twice); inclusion in the Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Series (for Deluge); recognition as a Minnesota Book Award Finalist (for Six Crooked Highways); recognition as a Great Lakes Book Association Finalist (for Deluge); and a Kansas City Star Book of the Year citation (for Six Crooked Highways).
Johnson has garnered excellent reviews (in addition to those from NYT) from Kirkus, Publishers Weekly, The Washington Post, ALA, Booklist, Forbes, The Chicago Tribune, and other journals. He has been a Chesterfield Writers’ Film Project Fellow in Hollywood and has received recognition from the Sundance Film Festival for his screenplays.
His first non-fiction title, White Heat: the Extreme Skiing Life, was published by Atria in December 2007 and sold 10,000 copies in the first month. The paperback edition of White Heat was released in 2008, and the book has recently come out with Simon & Schuster UK and Pocket Books. Live to Ride, a non-fiction work on motorcycles, was published in hardback by Simon & Schuster, June 2010, and in paperback 2011 to broad critical acclaim.
In 2013, Wayne's memoir, Baseball Diaries: Confessions of a Cold War Youth, was published by Submarine Publishing in paperback and as a Kindle title, where it enjoys a 5-star rating on Amazon.com.
Of mixed Native and European descent, Johnson grew up on the south side of Minneapolis, and in the north lakes region of Minnesota on the White Earth and Red Lake Reservations. Johnson studied microbiology at the University of Minnesota before discovering the pleasures of hang gliding near Bozeman, Montana, where he finished his undergraduate degrees in English and Philosophy. A Teaching-Writing Fellow of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and a former Wallace Stegner Fellow at Stanford, Johnson lives and skis in Utah, where he does emergency outdoor medical rescue for the Park City Ski Patrol. He is a long-time faculty member of the Iowa Summer Writing Festival in Iowa City.