Nickolas Butler was born in Allentown, Pennsylvania, raised in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, and was educated at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the University of Iowa Writers Workshop. He is the recipient of the 2010 Roark Prize in Poetry, the 2007 Davis Demitasse Poetry Award, and a runner-up in the 2009 Wisconsin People & Ideas Poetry Contest. He has also been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. His first novel, Shotgun Lovesongs, was published in March of 2014. Along the way he has worked as: a telemarketer, a coffee roaster, a meatpacker, an innkeeper (twice), a liquor store clerk, an office manager, a hot dog vendor, and an author escort. He lives on 16 acres of land in rural Wisconsin. His next door neighbors are about 30 buffalo.