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Richard Russo Edit Profile

novelist , screenwriter , writer

Richard Russo is an American novelist, short story writer, screenwriter, and teacher.


Russo, Richard was born on July 15, 1949 in Johnstown, New York, United States. Son of James W. and Jean Findlay (LeVarn) Russo.


Bachelor in English, University Arizona. Doctor of Philosophy in American Literature, University Arizona, 1980. Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing, University Arizona, 1981.


He was teaching in the English department at Southern Illinois University Carbondale when his first novel, Mohawk, was published in 1986. Much of his work has been semi-autobiographical, drawing on his life from his upbringing in upstate New York to his time teaching literature at Colby College (subsequently retired). He now lives and writes in Camden, Maine.

He has written six other novels and a short story collection. Russo co-wrote the 1998 film Twilight with director Robert Benton, who also adapted and directed Russo's Nobody's Fool into a 1994 film of the same title, starring Paul Newman. Russo wrote the teleplay for the HBO adaptation of Empire Falls, the screenplay for the 2005 film Ice Harvest, and the screenplay for the 2005 Niall Johnson film Keeping Mum, which starred Rowan Atkinson.


  • His 2001 novel Empire Falls received the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction.



Married Barbara Marie Russo. Children: Emily, Kate.

James W. Russo

Jean Findlay (LeVarn) Russo

Barbara Marie Russo

Kate Russo

Emily Russo