Richard Murray earned his B.A. from Goddard College in Vermont, a well known experimental school focused mainly on the creative arts. While there, he was the poetry editor of The Goddard Journal. He went on to earn his MFA from Rutgers University-Newark. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in The Moth, Poetry East, Slipstream, The Bitter Oleander, Santa Fe Literary Review, The Broome Review, Rattle, and other literary journals.
Richard is a member of the Board of Trustees for the New Jersey Folk Festival (run by Rutgers), where his work has primarily focused on New Jersey's Native American Indian tribes. He has also served on the Rutgers-New Brunswick Chancellor's Committee on Enslaved and Disenfranchised Populations in Rutgers History. In this role, he focused on Native American issues, and obtained a grant from the Chancellor that enabled the New Jersey Folk Festival to showcase NJ's state-recognized tribes.
What was your first job?
What are you currently obsessed with?
The Merovingians (rulers of much of pre-Christian Western Europe)
Three interesting things about you?
I have been playing improvisational guitar for many years. I am an avid traveler nationally and internationally. I previously taught creative writing at the high school level at the United Nations International School in New York City.
What's your approach to teaching creative writing?
I work to create a flexible, supportive and enabling environment where students can explore and develop their creative writing.
What should we be reading?
I recommend Stranger on Earth, the latest collection of poetry by Richard Jones. I support his interest in accessible poetry. I also recommend The Map of Salt and Stars by Jennifer Zeynab Joukhadar for anyone interested in learning more about Syrian culture and the contemporary and past history of Syria, the Middle East and the struggles of refugees from there.
And your personal life?
I live in Edison, NJ with my longtime partner Erica, who works with children with special needs.