Writer Profile

Picture of John E. Lane

John E. Lane


Short Biography:
An expert kayaker and place-based educator, Lane's outdoor adventure prose has appeared in Outside, American White Water, Canoe, South Carolina Wildlife, and many other periodicals. His long essays, River Wild, on paddling 59 miles of the Youghiogheny River, and Confluence: Pacolet River, recently appeared in the anthologies Heart of a Nation and Adventure America both from National Geographic Books. An essay by Lane about Cumberland Island appeared in the widely distributed In Short: Short Creative Nonfiction (WW Norton & Co. 1996). His natural history memoir, A Stand of Cypress, was the runner-up in the AWP creative non-fiction contest in 1995. John Lane has also published a book of personal essays, Waist Deep in Black Water (2002) from The University of Georgia Press. His first collection of personal essays, Weed Time: Essays from the Edge of a Country Yard (Briarpatch Press, 1993), described his year living in a cabin near Great Smoky Mountains.

In 1999 the University of Georgia Press published The Woods Stretched for Miles: Contemporary Southern Nature Writing, an anthology of Southern nature writing he co-edited with Wofford colleague Gerald Thurmond. In 2004 Georgia published Chattooga: Descending into the Myth of Deliverance River. He teaches at Wofford College and is one of the co-founders of the Hub City Writers Project.

Critical Description of Work:
Place and wilderness have been critical themes in my poetry, personal essays, and fiction. I have lived on a wilderness island off the coast of Georgia, studied crocodiles in Central America, surveyed monkeys in the remote rain forests of Suriname, and traveled extensively in the wild places of the United States, and paddled many of the rivers found there. It is these places that I write about.