Philip Atlas Clausen

Location: Ames IA

PHILIP ATLAS CLAUSEN is a blue-collar worker and writer who has engaged in various physical jobs, such as construction laborer and UPS driver, gaining a hands-on, earthy perspective that deeply informs his writing. Despite having no advanced academic degrees, he carves out three hours each morning for writing, leveraging his fresh, pre-conscious state to spark creativity. His approach involves conducting thorough research followed by a deliberate forgetting process to let his imagination lead, believing that true writing taps into a childlike belief in magic, inaccessible to those who rely solely on rational thought.


His first novel, “The Black Butterfly Woman,” explores themes so vivid that readers question if he has lived the experiences depicted. He lives in Iowa with his family, including his 94-year-old mother, and is currently working on “The Goldfinder,” a novel about the discovery of the source of California gold during the Gold Rush. His works often explore themes of noble intentions facing adverse outcomes.