Born in Jacksonville, Illinois, Michele McDannold grew up in the nearby village of Meredosia, population never more than 1200. She has lived in west central Illinois most of her life except for one year in Las Vegas and a short stint in Nebraska.Michele started writing poetry in grade school and maintained a connection with writing as an occasional pastime and coping mechanism. It was not until her early thirties that she began pursuing her poetry seriously and seeking publication. Since then, her poetry has been published in a wide range of print and online publications and anthologies.
Having only recently returned to a university to further her education, Michele’s writing style is self-taught, developing over time and life experience, aided by a “sick” love for books. Her poetry tends toward the narrative-daily and life observations told in colloquial speech. Her perspective comes from that of a marginalized artist struggling with poverty, mental illness, motherhood and society’s expectations of a woman and wife living in a small Midwestern town.Michele is no newcomer, she has been and still is an active participant in the small press community, making a huge impact for a number of years now. She was the Editor-in-Chief at “Red Fez Publications” for over five years, and in her own words, “for about as long as the most awesomest director Leopold McGinnis could stand for it.” She is the founder of “The Literary Underground” a grassroots effort committed to supporting independent artists, promoting diversity in creativity and fostering community in the small press communities. Michele is currently the editor/publisher for “Citizens For Decent Literature Press”, actively working on the “This Is Poetry” project with co-editor Brian W. Fugett of “Zygote in my Coffee” and proud as hell to have published the book of poetry “Random Acts of Terror” by Luis Rivas. In her spare time (haha), she helps Catfish McDaris out over at “Ppigpenn“–a literary arts blogzine, and those folks over at “Blotterature Literary Magazine” pretend to listen to the rambling on occasion.
Michele currently resides in Jacksonville, Illinois with her two teenage children and occasionally her wayward twenty-year-old child. She is a full-time student and does a massive amount of hustle to keep the dream alive. Her cat’s name is Ghost. He leaves her dead things as “offerings.”