B.A. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Political Science, 1998
Cameron McGill is a poet, educator, and songwriter from Champaign, Illinois. He is the author of Meridians (Willow Springs Books) and In the Night Field (Augury Books/Brooklyn Arts Press). His poems have appeared in The American Poetry Review, Beloit Poetry Journal, Grist, Northwest Review, Raleigh Review, RHINO, and Western Humanities Review, as well as the anthologies Teeth of the Billow Tree (Willow Springs Books) and Poetry Is Bread (Nirala Publications, forthcoming 2023). He holds an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Idaho and has received fellowships/scholarships from Summer Fishtrap, the New York State Summer Writers Institute, and the Port Townsend Writers’ Conference. In 2022, he released his seventh studio album The Widow Cameron. He teaches poetry in the GPCW at Western Colorado University and serves as Scholarly Assistant Professor at Washington State University, where he teaches creative writing and co-directs the Visiting Writers Series. He lives and writes and plays the piano in Moscow, Idaho.
How did you discover Western?
My friend and graduate school cohort member at the University of Idaho, CMarie Fuhrman, introduced me to the Graduate Program in Creative Writing at Western. I taught a guest lecture in her fall 2022 class with The Termites; we all hit it off, so we’re getting the band back together.
What are some of the highlights of your career?
First, let me say that every finished poem is a highlight/win in its own way! However, as far as traditional highlights go, I once made musical appearances with Rachael Yamagata on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Late Night with Conan O’Brien, and The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn. In 2006, they let me play Lollapalooza. Nowadays, it’s working on my next book of poems.
What most excites you about your field?
Poetry and music make me feel more human and more in touch with other humans’ experiences. Empathy may be the last word we have in the world; I believe poems and songs cultivate it.
What is your favorite thing about the Gunnison Valley?
Planning my first trip there in summer 2024!!!
- In the Night Field (Augury Books/Brooklyn Arts Press), 2021
- Meridians (Willow Springs Books), 2020
External Professional Affiliations
- Scholarly Assistant Professor, Washington State University