Notes from Evan Smith
"Oscar Casares is a Texas-born writer who earned wide acclaim with his first collection of short stories, Brownsville, which was published in 2003. He is currently working on a novel and teaching at The University of Texas at Austin.
Writing was not Casares' original career choice. After graduating from the University of Texas in 1987, Casares spent almost ten years traveling across the country working on national advertising campaigns.
During that time, he started writing. In 1996, Casares quit his advertising job to pursue writing full time. His first published short story, "Yolanda," appeared in The Threepenny Review in 1998. Another story, "Jerry Fuentes," was published one month later in Northwest Review.
Casares accepted a fellowship from the prestigious University of Iowa Writers' Workshop in 1999, and graduated with a MFA degree in 2001. In May 2002, the Texas Institute of Letters awarded him Dobie Paisano Fellowship, and BOOK Magazine declared him one of the "ten writers to watch in 2003" - Evan Smith, Texas Monthly Talks, Broadcast 12.23.04