Mikhail Shishkin (or Sjisjkin in Dutch transcription) is a writer. He studied English and German and became a journalist and translator. His debut as a writer was the 1993 short story ‘Calligraphy Lesson’; it was followed in 1994 by his first novel, Zapiski Larionova. In 1995, he settled in Switzerland as an interpreter for refugees. He published historical literature such as Russkaya Shveyzariya (Russian Switzerland, 2000). His latest work, Pismovnik (Letter-Book, 2010), earned him international praise.