Michael McGregor, M.F.A.

Professor Emeritus


M.F.A. 1997 Columbia University
B.A. 1980 University of Oregon

On the PSU faculty since 2000


Profiles & Biography, Personal Essay Writing, Memoir, Writing About the Arts, Immersion Writing, Masterpieces of Nonfiction, Fiction Writing


ACP Excellence in Publishing Award in Biography; Oregon Literary Arts Leslie Bradshaw Fellowship; Notable Essay, Best American Essays; Daniel Curley Award for Short Fiction; Illinois Arts Council Literary Grant; Image Artist of the Month; Walden Fellowship; Collegeville Institute Scholar in Residence; four-time recipient of the John Eliot Allen Outstanding Teacher Award


  • Writing coach, Collegeville Institute summer programs, 2012-16
  • Advisory Committee member, Oregon Book Awards, 2012-15
  • Freelance theater critic & arts writer, The Oregonian, 2001-11
  • Nonfiction editor, Oregon Literary Review, 2005-06
  • Professor, University of Oregon Study Abroad, Italy, 2004
  • Member/judge, Portland Theater Drammy Awards Committee 2003-2004
  • Lecturer, Fiction Writing & English, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, 1997-2000
  • Instructor, Columbia University 1995-97
  • Editor-in-Chief, Columbia: A Journal of Literature and Art, 1995-96
  • Freelance theater critic, The Seattle Weekly, 1993-94
  • Editor, Back Door Travel, 1985-87
  • Editor-in-Chief, World Concern Magazine, 1983-84


Pure Act: The Uncommon Life of Robert Lax, Fordham University Press, September 2015

(For a current list of upcoming talks/readings, go to: http://michaelnmcgregor.com/appearances/)


  • “Hanging Around Time,” Now Write Non-Fiction: Memoir, Journalism and Creative Nonfiction Exercises from Today’s Best Writers & Teachers, edited by Sherry Ellis, Tarcher/Penguin, 2009
  • “Thomas Mallon,” Dictionary of Literary Biography 350: American Novelists, Eighth Series, edited by James and Wanda Giles, 2009


The Seattle Review; StoryQuarterly; Poetry; The South Dakota Review; The Crab Orchard Review; The Mid-America Poetry Review; Image; Notre Dame Magazine; Weber: The Contemporary West; The Dictionary of Literary Biography; Poets & Writers; The Writer's Chronicle; American Theatre; Portland Monthly; Portland Magazine; Oregon Humanities; Oregon Historical Quarterly; The Raven Chronicles; The Merton Seasonal; The Griffin; Carve; Melange; Northwest Education; Metroscape; and other publications.



  • "A Celebration of Robert Lax," Oregon Literary Arts, 2015
  • "On Biography: Joan Didion and Robert Lax," with Tracy Daugherty, Wordstock, 2015
  • "The Language of Spiritual Literature in a Post-Religious Age," Notre Dame University, 2015
  • "The Persistence of Harlem in the Life and Legacy of Thomas Merton," International Thomas Merton Society conference, 2015
  • Oregon Literary Arts Delve seminar on Mitchell S. Jackson's The Residue Years, 2015
  • "The Vanport Flood and Racial Change in Portland," Diversity Series, Bureau of Development Services, City of Portland, 2015
  • “Decoding the Anti-Letters,” International Thomas Merton Society conference, 2013
  • Panel member, “Media and Journalism” & “History and Biography,” Ooligan Press Write to Publish Conference, 2013
  • “Writing About People,” St. John's University, 2012
  • Panel member, “Signing Your Life Away: Working With An Agent,” Ooligan Press Write to Publish Conference, 2012
  • “Tracy Kidder,” Oregon Literary Arts Delve series, 2011
  • “Thomas Merton, Robert Lax and the Poetics of Peace,” Canadian Thomas Merton Society conference, 2009
  • “Pax and the Origins of 'Original Child Bomb,'” Peace and Justice Studies Association Building Cultures of Peace conference, 2008
  • Panelist, “Devise and Conquer: Making Portland a Mecca for New Work,” 2006
  • Panel moderator, Lanford Wilson & Circle Repertory Theatre members, 2006
  • “Rewrite Is Not a Dirty Word,” Wordstock, Portland, 2005 & 2006
  • “Travel Journaling,” PSU Alumni Weekend, 2005
  • Panel member, “Writing for a Local Audience,” Northwest Independent Scholars Association conference, 2005
  • “Self-Editing,” Northwest New Writing Conference, 2002