About Carol Muske-Dukes

Carol Muske-Dukes is the current Poet Laureate of California and a professor at the University of Southern California. She is also a co-editor of two anthologies and an author of eight books of poetry, four novels, and two essay collections.

Her latest book of poetry is Twin Cities (Penguin Poets Series, June 2011). Her other recently released books are two anthologies: Crossing State Lines: An American Renga (co-edited with Bob Holman, Farrar, Straus & Giroux, May 2011) and The Magical Poetry Blimp Pilot’s Guide (co-edited with Diana Arterian, Figueroa Press, June 2011).

Carol’s other books of poetry include An Octave Above Thunder, New & Selected Poems (Penguin, 1997) and Sparrow, a National Book Award finalist published by Random House, 2003. Her four novels are Channeling Mark Twain (Random House, 2008), Life After Death (Random House, 2001), Saving St. Germ (Penguin, 1993) and Dear Digby (Viking, 1989). Dear Digby has been re-issued by Figueroa Press in 2003.

Carol’s collection of essays entitled Married to the Icepick Killer, A Poet in Hollywood was published in August of 2002. Her collection of reviews and critical essays, Women and Poetry: Truth, Autobiography and the Shape of the Self was published in the "Poets on Poetry" series of the University of Michigan Press, 1997.

Many of her collections have been "New York Times Most Notable Books" or listed in the current year’s "Best Books".

She is a regular critic for the New York Times Book Review and the LA Times Book Review. Her work appears everywhere from the New Yorker to L.A. Magazine and she is anthologized widely, including in Best American Poems, 100 Great Poems by Women and many others.

She is professor of English and Creative Writing and founding Director of the new PhD Program in Literature and Creative Writing at the University of Southern California.

She has received many awards and honors, including a Guggenheim fellowship, a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship, an Ingram-Merrill, the Witter Bynner award from the Library of Congress, the Castagnola award from the Poetry Society of America and several Pushcart Prizes.

On November 13, 2008, Governor Schwarzenegger appointed Carol as California’s Poet Laureate.

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