Michael McGriff was born and raised in Coos Bay, Oregon. He earned his BA at the University of Oregon and his MFA from the University of Texas at Austin, where he was a Michener fellow. His collections of poetry include the chapbook Choke (2006) and the full-length collections Dismantling the Hills (2008) and Home Burial (2012). He edited the collection To Build My Shadow a Fire: The Poetry and Translations of David Wevill (2010) and, with Mikaela Grassl, co-translated Tomas Tranströmer’s The Sorrow Gondola (2010). His recent collection of short stories, Our Secret Life in the Movies (co-authored with J. M. Tyree), was named one of NPR's Best Books of 2014.

McGriff has been praised for his unflinching appraisal of American ruin in his work. In the New York Times, Jeff Gordinier noted that McGriff is “plunging into the depths of some underground waterway in the American psyche—what’s happening to the environment, what’s happening to jobs, what’s happening to families—and rising to the surface to show us the debris.”
McGriff was a Stegner Fellow at Stanford University, and his honors and awards include fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Lannan Foundation and a Ruth Lilly Fellowship from Poetry. He is the recipient of a Balcones Prize and an Agnes Lynch Starrett Prize. He has taught creative writing at Stanford University, the Michener Center for Writers, and Lewis & Clark College. From 2009 to 2014, he published and edited Tavern Books.
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