Kathleen McClung is the author of three collections of poetry, Temporary Kin (2020), The Typists Play Monopoly (2018) and Almost the Rowboat (2013). Her poetry, memoir, and fiction appear widely in journals and anthologies, including Atlanta Review, The Healing Muse, California Quarterly, Caesura, Unsplendid, Mezzo Cammin, Heron Tree, Tule Review, Peacock Journal, Poetry Now, Gyroscope Review, Poets 11, Raising Lilly Ledbetter: Women Poets Occupy the Workspace, and A Bird Black as the Sun: California Poets on Crows and Ravens.
Kathleen was a Writer-in-Residence at Friends of the San Francisco Public Library in 2018-2019. Recipient of the Rita Dove Poetry Award from Salem College 2012 International Literary Awards, Kathleen was selected by Naomi Shihab Nye as the winner of the 2012 National Poetry Competition sponsored by the Cultural Center of Cape Cod. Nye also honored Kathleen’s work in The MacGuffin’s 2017 National Poet Hunt. Kathleen won the inaugural Shirley McClure Poetry Prize at the Los Gatos Listowel Writers Conference in 2016 and was a Top Three winner in the 2016 Maria W. Faust sonnet contest sponsored by the Great River Shakespeare Festival. A three-time finalist for the Morton Marr poetry prize, she won the prize in 2017. She was also a finalist for the Barry Spacks, Margaret Reid, Elinor Benedict, and 49th Parallel poetry awards. Other awards include prizes from the Ina Coolbrith Circle, Connecticut River Review, Sacramento Poetry Center, Chicagoland Poetry Contest, Illinois State Poetry Society, Oregon Poetry Association, Bay Area Poets Coalition, and Dancing Poetry Contest.
Kathleen has participated in panels and workshops at the AWP Conference, Write on the Sound Conference, Litquake, Mendocino Coast Writers Conference, Crossroads Irish-American Festival, and public libraries in California and Oregon. She serves as a reviewer for the William Saroyan International Prize for Writing, sponsored by the Stanford University Libraries, as well as sponsor/judge of the sonnet category for the Soul-Making Keats Literary Competition. She directs Women on Writing (WOW) community events each spring. In November 2014 she organized and hosted an Atlanta Review poetry reading of fellow northern California contributors. Publisher/editor Dan Veach participated in the celebration, which can be viewed on YouTube.
Kathleen has taught writing and literature classes at Skyline College in San Bruno, California for over twenty years. Additionally, she leads writing workshops at The Writing Salon in San Francisco and Berkeley. She has inspired students across the lifespan from teens to elders in schools, colleges, universities, and adult education programs. For two years she served as a supervisor of student teachers enrolled in the Mills College teacher credential program, providing guidance and support in the transition from graduate students to classroom teachers in public high schools.
In addition to teaching, from 1992 to 2007 Kathleen worked as an editor at UCSF Nursing Press, Food First Books, and Westview Press, publishers of books for scholars, clinicians, and activists. As managing editor, she coordinated production, sales, and marketing of a wide assortment of titles and collaborated with teams of skilled editorial professionals.
A native of northern California, Kathleen also lived for several years in Colorado. She holds masters degrees from Stanford University and California State University Fresno where she studied with poets Alan Shapiro, Philip Levine, and Peter Everwine. Other mentors include novelist Steve Yarbrough, poet Holly J. Hughes, and memoirist Maureen Murdock. She is deeply grateful for the contributions of all of her teachers.