25 pages 50 minutes read

Annie Proulx

55 Miles to the Gas Pump

Fiction | Short Story | Adult | Published in 1999

A modern alternative to SparkNotes and CliffsNotes, SuperSummary offers high-quality Study Guides with detailed chapter summaries and analysis of major themes, characters, and more.


Authorial Context: Annie Proulx

Annie Proulx was born in Norwich, Connecticut, in 1935 to a French Canadian father and amateur painter mother. Proulx spent her formative years in New England and briefly attended Colby College in Maine. She completed her college education at the University of Vermont, graduating in 1969 with high honors and a bachelor’s degree in history. She went on to earn her master’s degree at Sir George Williams University, now Concordia University, in Montreal. Although she began studying for a doctorate in Renaissance studies and passed her oral exams, she dropped out of the program to support her growing family.

While such an academic background may seem at odds with the grim stories of the American West for which Proulx is best known, she has witnessed firsthand the struggles of the rural working class struggling to get by in challenging environments. Upon moving to Wyoming in the mid-1990s, Proulx found herself facing a unique environment. She was especially enthralled by a landscape that seemed to stretch on without end. In the mid-2000s, she purchased 640 acres of Wyoming wetlands and prairie and built a home filled with windows looking out on a rich and varied landscape. Proulx’s

blurred text

blurred text