About Me

I am a writer of fiction and creative nonfiction, a collector of Beautiful Things, and an all-around creative. I am fascinated by people’s stories and passions, and driven by life’s particularities and peculiarities.

In everything I do, my desire is always to go deeper in some unexpected way, to observe from the corner of my eye and follow where my eye/mind/heart wanders in service of the story that needs to be told.

I never assume that the most obvious interpretation of a person, an event, or an environment is the most truthful one, let alone the only one, and I will always return to my core belief that there are not enough labels and categories in the world to contain even one person.

My goal? For others to enter that space with me and explore it for themselves.

Writing has been a lifelong pursuit, beginning long before earning my creative writing MFA from the University of Notre Dame, and evolving ever since.

For my own creative and emotional well-being, I always have a couple projects going simultaneously. I recently finished final edits on my thematic novel Evangelina Everyday which will be published by Cornerstone Press in the spring of 2022.

In addition to readying Evangelina Everyday for publication, creative nonfiction has been my most committed pursuit of late. I am actively collaborating on Picking Persimmons: Encounters with Midwestern Men, playing around with micro-memoirs about parenting and relationships, and occasionally writing reflective musings to accompany my almost-daily sunrise pictures. I am tentatively calling the collection of these Dawn at Dawn: Sunrise Reflections on Lake Wawasee.

Not to be forgotten, I continue to seek publication for my completed fiction manuscripts Born Beneath Pedro’s Sombrero: Tales from the National Association of Tourist Attraction Survivors, and Jam on Bread: A Collection of Short Fictions

Also finished but not forgotten is The 42 Beautiful Things Project. For five years, I collected, exhibited, and presented Beautiful Things in public venues. This project brought me great joy, and while no longer open for mailed submissions, can still be enjoyed on Facebook and Instagram.

I am half of Unmeasured Words, a creative and business partnership, and the founder and co-organizer of SwampFire Retreat, an annual retreat for writers and artists in Angola, Indiana. I am also an active member of the Society for the Study of Midwestern Literature, an organization which has been important to my professional and creative growth for over two decades.

In 2014, the Ohio Arts Council selected me to receive an Individual Excellence Award in Literature. I am deeply indebted to the OAC for their generous support and used the resources both to promote completed projects and to nurture ongoing ones through such endeavors as Writing the Rails.

For updates and posts, follow my public page on Facebook.

For comments, questions, and queries, please email me at dawnburns42 [at] gmail [dot] com. Tell me something of your story and passions and what brought you to my site.

Thanks for stopping by!

Dawn Burns

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Photo courtesy of CaSu Photography