Christoph Ransmayr was born in Wels, Upper Austria, in March 1954.
He grew up in Roitham near Gmunden and the Traunsee. From 1972 to 1978 he studied philosophy and ethnology in Vienna. He worked in Vienna as cultural editor for the newspaper Extrablatt from 1978 to 1982, also publishing articles and essays in GEO, TransAtlantik and Merian. After his novel Die letzte Welt (The Last World) was published in 1988 he travelled extensively in Ireland, Asia, North and South America. After his marriage in 2006, Ransmayr returned to live in Vienna. His books have been translated into over 30 languages. His prodigious travels provided the material for Atlas of an Anxious Man, also published by Seagull Books.