I was born in 1984 in Aurora, Illinois.

And I wasn’t one of those kids who always had a book in his hands. I was raised on Nintendo and organized sports. Reading felt more like a chore than a pastime. But even at a young age, words made sense to me. In the third grade I took second place in the school spelling bee. Against the eighth graders.

And then somewhere along the way I discovered I liked to write. Reading and writing became neither chore nor pastime, but a passion. In 2006 I moved to Chicago and studied Creative Non-Fiction writing here.

Regardless of genre or subject matter, I find that Aurora is present in everything I write. Sometimes that presence is explicit, sometimes it’s there in ways that only make sense inside my own head. But Aurora always seems to be lurking there.

Here are some places around Chicago I’m likely to be. Say hello if you see me: Books, Tea, Beer.

Or you can say hello to me electronically: willynast@gmail.com