© 2019-2020 by Michael Prior.



M.F.A.Creative Writing (Poetry), Cornell University. Advisory Committee: Alice Fulton, Ishion Hutchinson

M.A., English Literature, University of Toronto. Advisory Committee: Carmine Starnino, Richard Greene

B.A., English Literature, University of British Columbia 


  • Martin Sampson Teaching Award - Cornell University, Department of English (2019)

  • Martin Sampson Teaching Award - Cornell University, Department of English (2018)


  • Recipient, Wallace Stegner Fellowship, Stanford University (declined) (2019).

  • Recipient, Explore and Create Grant from the Canada Council for the Arts (2018).

  • Named a "Writer to Watch" by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (2016).

  • Winner, Matrix Magazine Lit POP Award for Poetry for "Some Notes Regarding Your Immortal Soul,” “Toll,” and “The More Deceived" (2015).

  • 2nd Place, The Fiddlehead Bliss Carman Poetry Prize for "Hinny" (2015).

  • Winner, The Walrus Poetry Prize for "Ventriloquism for Dummies" (2014).

  • 2nd Place, The New Quarterly Nick Blatchford Occasional Verse Contest for "The Fisher" (2014).

  • Winner, Magma Poetry Editors' Prize for "Lamprey" (2013).


Assistant Professor of English and Mellon ACM Faculty Fellow, Macalester College (2019 - present)

Lecturer in the Department of English, Cornell University (2016 - 2019)

  • ENGL 2880: Expository Writing (Creative Non-fiction). 2 sections. ​A writing-intensive seminar and workshop that explores the history and genre conventions of the personal essay form; readings include Gloria Anzaldúa, James Baldwin, Leslie Jamison, and Joan Didion.

  • ENGL 2800: Introduction to Creative Writiing (Fiction, Poetry). 4 sections. ​An introductory creative writing course; students study techniques and terminology related to the writing of poetry and short fiction, while workshopping their own work; readings include Jumpa Lahiri, Eduardo C. Corral, Octavio Paz, Robert Hayden, Elizabeth Bishop and Emily Dickinson.

  • ENGL 4950: Directed Studies in Creative Writing. 2 sections. A directed study course focusing on contemporary poets of colour; readings include Marilyn Nelson, Christopher Soto, Carl Phillips, Rita Dove, Danez Smith, Jennifer Chang, and Vijay Sheshadri.

  • ENGL 1168: Cultural Studies - Art & Argument. 2 sections. ​A First-Year Writing Seminar focusing on critical thinking and communication skills with a focus on the personal essay in contemporary America; readings include Annie Dillard, Richard Rodriguez, James Baldwin, and Joan Didion.

  • ENGL 1167: Great New Books. 2 sections. A First Year Writing seminar focusing on how contemporary writers of colour navigate various inheritances—cultural, familial, literary—in their work. Readings include Dionne Brand, David Chariandy, Eduardo C. Corral, and Ruth Ozeki.

Teaching Assistant in the Department of English, Cornell University (Summer 2016)

  • ENGL 1131: Latin American History. 1 section.

Teaching Assistant in the Department of English, University of Toronto (2014 - 2015)

  • ENGL 210: Introduction to Poetry. 1 section.

  • ENGL 110: Academic Writing. 1 section.