Michael Parker

Teaching Writer

Michael Parker taught fiction at the Workshop from 1988-92 and was a Visiting Writer in 2006.

Where are you living and what brought you there?

I live in Greensboro NC and Austin TX—Greensboro because I teach in the MFA program at UNC Greensboro, Austin because I love Austin.

Where are you working and what do you enjoy about it?

I teach undergraduates and graduates in the Creative Writing program at UNCG.  I love everything about the classroom, even grading literature papers, and I love the mix and great talent of our graduate students in the MFA program, who come to us from all over the country.

What do you find yourself most often reading/listening to lately and why?

I confess I have to read a lot of stuff for classes—rereading, mostly, which I love, as you can never read As I Lay Dying too many times—and novels to blurb.  But right now I am reading Allen Weir’s Tehano, which is stupendous, a word I have never used before.

What are you working on right now and what does it represent in the larger body of your artistic accomplishments?

I just finished a novel which is set in West Texas and am at present waiting anxiously for some other idea to stick around longer than a couple of days.  As for the latter part of the question, I’d best leave that up to someone with more objectivity than me.

What are your publications, performances, albums, and/or achievements that seem most important to you at this point in time?

None of them, because I am by inclination a past-dweller in my work and am the polar opposite about my work.   After I have given up on it enough for it to be published, I don’t think about it unless someone asks me, and then I usually can’t answer with any authority or credulity.

What’s the best advice you can give a Young Writer (in general or in your specific genre)?

Find the Music of What Happened and you’ll convince the reader you know what happened.

Where can we find you online?

www.michaelfparker.com

Submitted May 2012