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Chuck Klosterman began writing "Fargo Rock City: A Heavy Metal Odyssey in Rural Nörth Daköta" in 1998 while working for a newspaper in Akron, Ohio. In a 2011 interview with the Nervous Breakdown, Klosterman claimed that his intent was to write "Fargo Rock City" from an academic standpoint to legitimize the subject matter, because at the time, there was no "I Love the '80s" marathons on VH1, no reality TV shows attempting to defibrillate the careers of aging rock stars and not all that many people who even admitted to liking heavy metal in the first place.

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