W.P. Kinsella (1935-2016)

Author W.P. Kinsella, 81, died September 16, 2016 in Hope, British Columbia, Canada, reportedly of assisted suicide. Kinsella is best known for his debut novel, baseball fantasy Shoeless Joe (1982), adapted as film Field of Dreams (1989). Other works of genre interest include The Iowa Baseball Confederacy (1986), If Wishes Were Horses (1996), and Butterfly Winter (2011), and collections The Alligator Report (1985), Red Wolf, Red Wolf (1987), The Further Adventures of Slugger McBatt (1988), The Secret of the Northern Lights (1998), and The Essential W.P. Kinsella (2015). He edited anthology Baseball Fantastic (2015). In all he published nearly 30 books, including fiction, poetry, and non-fiction, often about baseball. He also frequently wrote about the indigenous peoples of Canada, notably in his first book, collection Dance Me Outside (1977).

William Patrick Kinsella was born May 25, 1935 in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. In 1970 he began attending the University of Victoria to study writing, graduating with a BA in creative writing in 1974; he got his MFA at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop in 1978. His final fiction work, Russian Dolls, is forthcoming next year. Kinsella was made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1993, and was named to the Order of British Columbia in 2005.