Scott Beauchamp was born in St. Louis, Missouri to a family that read Omni instead of the New Yorker and The Foundation Trilogy instead of the Rabbit series. He spent most of his childhood wandering around outside lost in his imagination. When he was in first grade, during Operation Desert Storm, he won a school-wide essay contest called “Why I Am Proud to be an American.” After reading the essay aloud to his classmates, while Lee Greenwood’s song named something similar to the essay contest played, a teacher in the front row motioned for Scott to keep moving his chair further and further back until he eventually fell off of the stage. This event would become a synecdoche for his ambivalent and complicated relationship with writing, patriotism, and authority.
Scott played many sports, achieving modest success at most. In tenth grade he quit the wrestling and football teams after discovering Allen Ginsberg. No one Scott knew in St. Louis had heard of Ginsberg, and the poems seemed to be the opposite of Lee Greenwood’s song. Scott attended the University of Missouri in Columbia for a few years before they parted amicably. Scott then joined the Army, serving as an Infantryman during two deployments to Iraq. His professional writing career began in earnest in 2007 when he wrote about the war for The New Republic. The publication threw him under the bus and the Army made him work 20 hours a day building parking lots and moving a junkyard from one end of the base to another until he eventually succumbed to typhoid. It was a more dramatic and dangerous, albeit much slower, flip off of a stage.
After serving in the Army, Scott lived for a few years in Brooklyn where he met many wonderful and interesting people. But the city was too demanding and fun to actually get any work done, so Scott bought a house in Midcoast Maine where he lives with his wife Nika and their dog Otis. He mostly spends his time unpacking and complicating the question of why he’s proud to be an American, but he also writes about the military, Catholicism, the Grateful Dead, literature, and Agapē. His work has appeared in The Paris Review, The Atlantic, New York Magazine, and The American Conservative, among other places.