Born in Denver, Colorado, Burns Ellison grew up in Nebraska. He attended the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop in Iowa City in the 1960s. His most notable achievement from that period is a memoir published in The Iowa Review titled “The First Annual Nelson Algren Memorial Poker Game.” In the 1990s, he got the graduate degree he didn’t get from Iowa from the University of Colorado in Boulder. What heÌ?s done best in pursuing the literary life is acquiring those jobs that look good on the jacket of a book. These include working with disturbed kids in California, driving dog teams in Colorado, and being a shill in Nevada casinos. He now wants to get published the book that goes with the jacket.