Michael Chitwood was born in the foothills of the Virginia Blue Ridge in a small town named Rocky Mount. He grew up there, attending the county’s only high school. He attended Emory and Henry College for my undergraduate degree, earning a BA in English in 1980. He worked as a science writer for a number of years at the University of Virginia Medical Center, eventually becoming assistant editor of the magazine Helix. While there, he also became a full-time student in the MFA program, receiving his degree in 1986. He moved to North Carolina that year and worked as a science and medical writer at Duke University Medical Center and then at Research Triangle Institute where he edited the magazine Hypotenuse.
Previous books include the poetry collections Salt Works and Whet (Ohio Review Books 1992 and 1995), The Weave Room (Chicago, 1998), and Spill(Tupelo, 2008). Chitwood has also published two prose books, Hitting Below the Bible Belt: Baptist Voodoo, Blood Kin, Grandma’s Teeth and Other Stories from the South (Down Home, 1998) and Finishing Touches (Tryon, 2006). After the birth of his son, he became a free-lance writer and full-time Dad. And he became a commentator for North Carolina’s WUNC affiliate of National Public Radio. He also began teaching at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. He is now a full-time visiting lecturer at UNC and lives with his wife and two children in Chapel Hill.