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The author of several books of award-winning personal narrative and fiction. The recipient of honors and awards from the NYC Big Book Award, the Paris Book Festival, the Hawthorne Prize, the Page Turner Awards, Readers' Choice Awards, The Society of Midland Authors, The Chicago Writers Association, and the Eric Hoffer Book Awards.. He has also been honored as a former Writer-in-Residence at the Jack Kerouac Project in Orlando  and at the Ernest Hemingway Birthplace Home in Oak Park, Illinois.  

For many years now, he's been a writing teacher at Gotham Writers, and the editor of the writing craft website at MEDIUM—The Writer Shed. David also writes regular personal essays at SUBSTACK: The Abundance.  MORE

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Summer 2024

From Collective Ink Books


A personal narrative on the power of growing older

".An authentic and moving narrative with fittingly beautiful and powerful writing.”

—International Review of Books

“An engaging contemplation of deeper issues in the midst of everyday life.”

Kirkus Reviews

The Consequence of Stars: A memoir of home

New revised edition with new introduction and two new essays. 

A memoir-in-essays—recalling a solo and revealing cross-country train ride, a spiritual awakening in the Navajo Nation, performing music with Jack Kerouac groupies at the writer's former Florida home, and hunting for the ghost of Hemingway in the attic of the famous writer's birthplace home.


A memoir of finding one's place in the world. 

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Now Available 

The Islander

A short novel 

By David W. Berner

Literary Titan Gold Award

—"A poignant, thought-provoking work of fiction...impactful...compelling."

NYC Big Book Award-Winner (Novella)

Paris Book Festival Honoree

Page Turner Awards Finalist

Hawthorne Prize Finalist

Readers' Choice Award, Finalist

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An aging writer retreats to a remote island off the coast of Ireland to escape to a monastic life. A young woman who carries her own troubled past comes to the island on a solitary spiritual and hiking adventure. Together they attempt to discover a way to heal their collective hearts.

A novella from The Shortish Project and

Outpost19 Books. An initiative to champion the great tradition of short novels. 

"Unputdownable...a melancholic, solemn, and remarkable short novel that captures in beautiful lexical style the interaction between two people. The writing style is impeccable."

—International Review of Books


The Islander excels in a simple, rugged perspective of life and self that contrasts the experiences and perspectives of father and son and the lives each touches. (The novel's) reflection of psychological depth and literary strength will attract a wide audience."

—Midwest Book Review




"A timeless phenomenon splendidly explored and revealed in his wise and insightful Walks with Sam, a moving memoir about how a young dog can teach an old man new tricks about mindfulness and presence. Hard to remember when I've enjoyed a walk with two friends more." —James Dodson, New York Times best-selling author of Faithful Travelers and Final Rounds. 


"Berner’s plainspoken manner reveals moments of true enlightenment. Dog lovers and spiritualists will adore this." Publishers Weekly


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"A storyline to satisfy our wistful golfing souls."Tom Coyne, author of A Course Called Scotland and A Course Called America

"An effectively colorful, somewhat philosophical story of love and heartbreak on the golf links." — Kirkus Reviews

"What an absolute delight this piece of literary fiction is!  I was hooked from page one." — International Review of Books

A young boy is in love with the game of golf, but he doesn’t understand why. He has a natural talent and an enviable swing but playing the game well is not enough. There’s something missing.

When Jimmy, the homeless man who spends his days cheering on golfers from his usual sitting spot just off the 5th green at Old Elm Municipal Golf course goes missing, the young boy becomes curious. His quest uncovers Jimmy’s mysterious link to the Old Course in St. Andrews, Scotland and reveals a life in golf that not only fascinates but sends the boy on a personal journey to discover the magic of an ancient game.


Roundfire Books, UK



David W. Berner is the recipient of honors and awards from The Society of Midland AuthorsThe Chicago Writers Association, and the Eric Hoffer Book Awards. He has been the Writer-in-Residence for the Jack Kerouac Project in Orlando, where he was privileged to live and work at the Kerouac House for two-and-a-half months. He later was honored as the Writer-in-Residence at the Ernest Hemingway Birthplace Home in Oak Park, Illinois.


His memoirs reflect on our collective relationships and how those experiences link us to the world we share. David's stories are about fathers and sons, the redemptive power of travel, nature, music, and the sage-like connections we share with pets. 

His work has appeared in the Chicago Tribune, Clef Notes Chicagoland Journal for the Arts, and Under the Gum Tree.


David was born in Pittsburgh, PA and now lives in the Chicago area. Along with his writing credentials, David has had a distinguished career as a broadcast journalist, reporting for the CBS Radio Network, WBBM Radio Chicago, and public radio outlets throughout America.


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A new novel by David W. Berner comes to Substack.

Now available in PAPERBACK 

RAINBOW MAN is a serialized online story about a aging widower who travels to Spain to seek solace and instead finds himself entangled in the secret counterculture life of a younger woman. 

Join the story @ SUBSTACK

Available NOW. 


David writes inside a shed on his property, an 8x10 space filled with books, a desk, a fan, a heater, and his old acoustic guitar. Many of his books have been written here, Writer Shed Stories from Writer Shed Press is produced here, along with his regular personal essay newsletter @Substack:
The Abundance


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