Franz has been a contributor to a variety of publications, including VICE, Noisey, The Week, NewMusicBox, Blender, Spectrum Culture, Impose, Beyond Race, and Scratchbomb; and contributed to It All Changed In An Instant: More Six-Word Memoirs (Harper Perennial); Rock Torch: Volume 1, a collection of musicians recommending other musicians; and The Road Most Traveled, a collection of essays about touring life curated by Chuck Ragan. He had a quarterly column at the literary magazine InDigest. [Click here for selected links to writing online]

His first story collection, Complicated Gardening Techniques, was released by Julius Singer Press in 2009. He has released three chapbook collections of essays. All four chapbooks are available at the webstore.

His first book, The Humorless Ladies of Border Control: Touring the Punk Underground from Belgrade to Ulanbataar, will be published on The New Press in May 2016.


Complicated Gardening Techniques



Franz Nicolay’s first collection of stories, Complicated Gardening Techniques, is a six-story chapbook released by Julius Singer Press, an independent Brooklyn imprint. It’s “real things that happened to me and people I know, fake things that might have happened to people you know; loosely fictionalized and highly stylized with handy tips and pithy epigrams.” [BUY]






The Troubadour & The Patron: Music Writing 2007-2011


 A collection of magazine pieces, essays, reviews, and stories about music; including a tale of working as a strolling accordionist at an Italian restaurant in Hoboken and thoughts on musicians as varied as T.V. Smith, Mark Kozelek, and the Carpenters. [BUY]








Work-Rest-Play-Die: Essays on Bob Dylan & the Subhumans


Long form analyses and meditations on late-period Bob Dylan as reflected through Adorno and Edward Said; and a career retrospective of punk heroes Subhumans. [BUY]









Tour Diaries 2007-09


Tour diaries; including stories about the Hold Steady opening for the Rolling Stones, overnight drives over the Slovenia/Croatia border with a drunken Russian rugby team, and much more. [BUY]









What You Missed When You Stopped Listening At Prince’s Best-known Albums” (The Week, April 2016)

“Changing The Country, We Apologize For The Inconvenience” (Ukraine Tour Diaries) Part One Part Two Part Three (Noisey/Vice Nov. 2014)

“Dispatches From The Road” Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 (Punknews, Nov. 2012)

“The Humorless Ladies Of Border Patrol” (The Ruckus, Oct. 2012)

“Tales from the Road: Russia & Mongolia” (VICE, Oct. 2012)

“Petty Humiliations In The Life Of An Accordion Player” (InDigest, Nov. 2011)

“The Troubadour & The Patron” (InDigest, May 2011)

“Rock Stars, As Observed In The Wild” (Scratchbomb, Aug. 2011)

“Necessary Enemies: Fear & Failure In Popular Performance” (InDigest, Feb. 2011)

“Little Hobbes In The Big Woods” (InDigest, May 2010)

“Complicated Gardening Techniques” (InDigest, May 2010)

“Love, Death, & Knock-Knock Jokes: Adorno, Said, and Late Style In Dylan” (Spectrum Culture, July 2009)

“Work-Rest-Play-Die: The Subhumans” (Impose, July 2009)

Tour Diary April 2009 Part 1 and Part 2 (Punknews, April 2009)