Adrian C. Louis. Courtesy NativeWiki.

Adrian C. Louis (born 1947) is an American poet, novelist, and short story writer. His novel Skins (1995) discusses reservation life and issues such as poverty, alcoholism, and social problems and was the basis for the 2002 film, Skins. His work is noted for its realism.


Born in northern Nevada in 1946, Louis is the eldest of twelve children. Of mixed heritage, Louis is of Lovelock Paiute descent. He moved from Nevada to South Dakota's Pine Ridge Reservation.

Louis graduated from Brown University with a B.A. and M.A. in Creative Writing. Louis was also a former journalist and along with being editor of four tribal newspapers, he was the managing editor of Indian Country Today and a co-founder of the Native American Journalists Association.

Louis has ten published books of poetry and two novels. His poetry and fiction have garnered him much recognition and awards. His work has been praised by some of the other notable modern Native American writers, including Sherman Alexie, N. Scott Momaday, James Welch and Leslie Marmon Silko. In 1999, he was added to the Nevada Writer's Hall of Fame. In 2001 he was awarded the Writer of the Year by Wordcraft Circle of Native Writers and Storytellers and the Cohen Award for best published poem in Ploughshares. He is also the recipient of the Pushcart Prize as well as fellowships from the Bush Foundation, the South Dakota Arts Council, the Nebraska Arts Council, the National Endowment of the Arts and the Lila Wallace–Reader's Digest Foundation.

Louis taught English at Pine Ridge's Oglala Lakota College from 1984–1997; since 1999, he has taught in the Minnesota State University systems.



  • The Indian Cheap Wine Seance: Poetry. Providence, RI: Gray Flannel Press, 1974.
  • Muted War Drums: Poems. Marvin, SD: Blue Cloud Quarterly, 1977.
  • Sweets for the Dancing Bears: Poems. Marvin, SD: Blue Cloud Quarterly, 1979.
  • Fire Water World: Poems. Albuquerque, NM: West End Press, 1989.
  • Among the Dog Eaters: Poems. Albuquerque, NM: West End Press, 1992.
  • Blood Thirsty Savages: Poems. New York: Time Being Books, 1994.
  • Days of Obsidian, Days of Grace: Sselected poetry and prose by four Native American writers (by Jim Northrup, Adrian C Louis, Denise Sweet, & Al Hunter). Duluth, MN: Poetry Harbor, 1994.
  • Vortex of Indian Fevers. Evanston, IL: TriQuarterly Books, 1995.
  • Ceremonies of the Damned: Poems. Reno, NV: University of Nevada Press, 1997.
  • Skull Dance. Jamaica, VT: Bull Thistle, 1998.
  • Ancient Acid Flashes Back: Poems. Reno, NV: University of Nevada Press, 2000.
  • Bone & Juice. Evanston, IL: TriQuarterly Books, 2001.
  • Evil Corn. Granite Falls, MN: Ellis Press, 2004.
  • Logorrhea. Evanston, IL: TriQuarterly Books, 2006.
  • Archeology. Portland, OR: Tavern Books, 2011.
  • Savage Sunsets. Albuquerque, NM: West End Press, 2012.
  • Fire Water World / Among the Dog Eaters. Portland, OR: Tavern Books, 2014.


  • Skins: A novel. New York: Crown, 1995.

Short fictionEdit

  • Wild Indians, and other creatures. Reno, NV: University of Nevada Press, 1996.


Except where noted, bibliographical information courtesy WorldCat.[1]

Audio / videoEdit

'Savage Sunsets' by Adrian C03:17

'Savage Sunsets' by Adrian C. Louis - Book Trailer

  • Skins (film, 2002) - Screenwriting

See alsoEdit


  • Kratzert, M. "Native American Literature: Expanding the canon", Collection Building Vol. 17, 1, 1998, p. 4


  1. Search results = au:Adrian C. Louis, WorldCat, OCLC Online Computer Library Center Inc. Web, Nov. 16, 2014.

External linksEdit

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