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Michael Loyd Gray was born in Jonesboro, Arkansas, in the shadow of Graceland and Elvis Presley, the land of RC Colas and Moon Pies, but grew up in Champaign, Illinois. He earned an MFA in English from Western Michigan University and has taught at colleges and universities in upstate New York, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Texas. He graduated from the University of Illinois with a Journalism degree and was a newspaper staff writer in Arizona and Illinois for ten years, conducting the last interview with novelist Erskine Caldwell. He is the winner of the 2005 Alligator Juniper Fiction Prize, the 2005 The Writers Place Award for Fiction. His novel Not Famous Anymore was awarded a grant by the Elizabeth George Foundation and his novel December's Children was a finalist for the 2006 Sol Books Prose Series Prize. A lifelong Chicago Bears and Rolling Stones fan, he lives with two insolent cats, EH and Moonpie.