Nic Kelman

what nic does

"Art, to me, is primarily the abstraction of reality through the artist’s personal lens, but when the lens is words, that abstraction must be more concrete."

Nic Kelman was born in Manhattan, moved to the UK when he was 12, and then returned to the United States to attend university at MIT. There he majored in Brain and Cognitive Science, learning from the likes of Stephen Pinker, Marvin Minsky, and Noam Chomsky, and minored in Film and Media Studies. In his final year, MIT awarded him the Burchard Scholarship, given for outstanding performance in both the arts and the sciences.

After completing his undergraduate work, he attended the Brown University Creative Writing MFA program on fellowship. He began his first novel, girls, as his thesis at Brown and the work was awarded Brown's “James Assatly Award” for graduate fiction.

girls was published in hardcover in the U.S. in 2003 and in paperback in 2005. It was named one of the Best Books of the Year by both the San Francisco Chronicle and The New York Journal and went on to become an international bestseller, still available in over a dozen languages.

Video Game Art, Nic's second book, was published in early 2006 by Assouline Publishing. Distributed globally in both French and English, the lavishly illustrated Video Game Art attempts to the lay the foundations for placing the art and design of video games in an art history context and was the first work of its kind.

Nic's third book, the novel The Behavior of Light, was published in Italy by Fazi Editore in 2008 under the title, Il Comportamento Della Luce.

Among other places, his writing and photography have appeared in Elle, Glamour, The Village Voice, BlackBook, The Kenyon Review, and The New York Tyrant, as well as various anthologies. He also wrote an online biweekly column about media and culture for two years for the now defunct "Giant Realm."

Over the past two years he has focused primarily on writing for screen and television. Recently, he sold his first spec screenplay to Steven Spielberg at Dreamworks Studios and his first television pilot was optioned by ABC Studios for Warren Littlefield. Since then he has written original feature scripts for Warner Brothers and Paramount Pictures, among other companies.

Firmly believing in Marcus Tulius Cicero's comment, "a room without books is like a body without a soul," Nic's library packs every corner of his apartment, compacting the likes of Les Fleurs du Mal with The Ecology of Small Mammals or Slave Songs of the United States with The X-men Encyclopedia.


nic's bookshelf

"A room without books is like a body without a soul."
Marcus Tulius Cicero


From Nic Kelman
  • How To Pass As Human
  • girls
  • Video Game Art
  • Il Comportamento Della Luce
  • Screenplays
  • Urban Images
  • Short Works


A writer has to be passionate about their material - if you're not interested in it, why would someone else be?