|Occupation||Professor at United States Air Force Academy, Air Force Officer, Novelist, Essayist|
|Education||B.S. (English), M.A. (English), PhD (English)|
|Alma mater||United States Air Force Academy, University of Tennessee, Florida State University|
|Notable works||I'd Walk with My Friends If I Could Find Them|
Jesse Goolsby is an American author and a US Air Force officer best known for his novel I'd Walk with My Friends If I Could Find Them (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt). His fiction and essays have appeared widely, including Narrative Magazine, Salon, The Literary Review, Epoch, The Kenyon Review, and the Best American Series. He is the Acquisitions Editor for War, Literature & the Arts.
Goolsby was raised in Chester, California, graduating from Chester High School in 1996. He attended the United States Air Force Academy, commissioning as a Second Lieutenant and earning a Bachelors of Science in English in 2001. After assignments as an Aircraft Maintenance Officer in England and New Mexico from 2001 to 2006, Goolsby earned his Master of Arts in English from The University of Tennessee in 2008. He taught as a Captain at the United States Air Force Academy before serving as a speech writer and advisor to senior leaders at the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. In 2016, Goolsby earned his PhD in English at Florida State University under the direction of Robert Olen Butler. He was a Distinguished Visiting Writer at Saint Leo University and is currently an Associate Professor of English & Fine Arts at the United States Air Force Academy.
Goolsby's novel I'd Walk with My Friends If I Could Find Them (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt) was published in 2015 and investigates three American soldiers haunted by their actions in Afghanistan as they search for absolution and human connection in family and civilian life. It won the Florida Book Award in Fiction and was long-listed for the Center for Fiction's Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel Prize.
Goolsby's fiction and essays have been awarded the John Gardner Memorial Prize in Fiction, the Richard Bausch Short Story Prize, and multiple inclusions in the Best American Series. He is the recipient of distinguished fellowships from the Hambidge Center for Creative Arts and Sciences and the Sewanee Writers Conference.
Goolsby's works explore the themes of war, family, trauma, displacement, sex, and violence. Much of his work is set in or near his hometown of Chester, California and the surrounding Plumas and Lassen counties. In his award-winning short story "Derrin of the North" (Harpur Palate), Goolsby investigates the moral and physical power balance that accompanies a friendship where one boy suffers from Cystic Fibrosis. In "Waiting for Red Dawn" (Alaska Quarterly Review), he explores the social proximity of violence in the American post-9/11 world. Goolsby has stated that he is interested in art that complicates the human experience and showcases people as individuals, unattached to the ease of binary interpretation.
- I'd Walk with My Friends If I Could Find Them ISBN 9780544705227 Search this book on . Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
- "Waist Deep at Hapuna” Pleaides
- “Ishi Wilderness” CutBank
- “Feed” The Kenyon Review
- “Sometimes Kids Bleed for No Reason” Redivider
- “Anchor & Knife” Narrative Magazine
- “Pollice Verso” The Literary Review
- “Be Polite But Have a Plan to Kill Everyone You Meet” New Madrid
- “Benevolence” Superstition Review
- “Two Things from a Burning House” storySouth
- “Safety” The Greensboro Review
- “Resurrecting a Body Half” The Literary Review
- “Top of the World” EPOCH
- “Touch” Our Stories
- “Derrin of the North” Harpur Palate
- “Preemptive” Salon
- “Darcy” Consequence
- “Vas Deferens, Bears & Jacob: Why I Listen to My Children Breathe” The Journal 
- “Free: Your Purchase If Mount Lassen Erupts While Ordering” Sycamore Review
- “Waiting on Red Dawn” Alaska Quarterly Review
- "Visiting Writers". Saint Leo University MA. Retrieved 28 July 2016.
- "Professor Jesse Goolsby" (PDF). USAFA. Retrieved 2016-11-15.
- "Florida Book Awards". Florida Book Awards. Retrieved 2016-05-16.
- "Center for Fiction's First Novel List". Center for Fiction. Retrieved 2015-07-16.
- "Gardner Memorial Prize Achives". Harpur Palate. Retrieved 3 July 2016.
- "Richard Bausch Short Story Prize". Our Stories. Retrieved 3 Apr 2012.
- "Hambidge Distinguished Fellowships". hambidge.org. Retrieved 11 November 2016.
- "Sewanee Distinguished Fellowships". sewaneewriters.org. Retrieved 3 November 2016.
- "NPR Author Interview". NPR. Retrieved 5 July 2015.
- "storySouth Author Interview". storySouth.org. Retrieved 23 August 2015.
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