Short Biography of Dean Koontz

Dean Koontz Biography

When he was a senior in college, Dean Koontz won an Atlantic Monthly fiction competition and has been writing ever since. His books are published in 38 languages; worldwide sales are nearly 200 million copies, and that figure currently increases more than 17 million copies per year.

Seven of his novels have risen to number one on the New York Times hardcover bestseller list (Lightning, Midnight, Cold Fire, Hideaway, Dragon Tears, Intensity, and Sole Survivor), making him one of only ten writers ever to have achieved that milestone. Eleven of his books have risen to the number one position in paperback. His books have also been major bestsellers in countries as diverse as Japan and Sweden.

He has written a screenplay for the film adaptation of his novel Cold Fire; he wrote and executive produced The Face of Fear for Warner Brothers-CBS Television. Phantoms, based on the author's screenplay - starring Peter O'Toole and Joanna Going - was released by Miramax/Dimension in early 1998 and is now available on videocassette.

Intensity, which went to number one on the New York Times bestseller list, was filmed by Peter Gruber's Mandalay as a miniseries for the Fox Network, and aired initially in August 1997. Mandalay is also developing a miniseries based on one of the author's most recent works of fiction, Sole Survivor, scheduled at this time for a Fall 1998 premiere. Meanwhile, ABC is developing a miniseries of Mr. Murder.

The New York Times has called his writing "psychologically complex, masterly and satisfying." The New Orleans Times-Picayune said Koontz is, "at times lyrical without ever being naive or romantic. [He creates] a grotesque world, much like that of Flannery O'Conner or Walker Percy ... scary, worthwhile reading." Of Cold Fire, a worldwide #1 bestseller, the United Press International said, "An extraordinary piece of fiction. It will be a classic."

Dean Koontz was born and raised in Pennsylvania. He graduated from Shippensburg State College (now Shippensburg University), and his first job after graduation was with the Appalachian Poverty Program, where he was expected to counsel and tutor underprivileged children on a one-to-one basis. His first day on the job, he discovered that the previous occupier of his position had been beaten up by the very kids he had been trying to help and had landed in the hospital for several weeks. The following year was filled with challenge but also tension, and Koontz was more highly motivated than ever to build a career as a writer. He wrote nights and weekends, which he continued to do after leaving the poverty program and going to work as an English teacher in a suburban school district outside Harrisburg. After a year and a half in that position, his wife, Gerda, made him an offer he couldn't refuse: "I'll support you for five years," she said, "and if you can't make it as a writer in that time, you'll never make it." By the end of those five years, Gerda had quit her job to run the business end of her husband's writing career. Dean and Gerda Koontz live in southern California.

This Biography was taken from the Randomhouse Offical Dean Koontz site. You can find the link to this great page in my links section.

Bibliography  Biography  Book of Counted Sorrows  Books About Dean
Dean's Pseudonyms  Links  My Ten Favorites
News  Write to Dean  Main