KIRBY MICHAEL WRIGHT was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii. He is a graduate of Punahou School in Honolulu and the University of California at San Diego. He received his MFA in Creative Writing from San Francisco State University. His most recent book is THE QUEEN OF MOLOKA’I: Book 1: Based On A True Story. This work of creative nonfiction is based on the life and times of Wright’s hapa haole grandmother, a family saga that spans four generations of a kama’aina family.
Wright has been nominated for five Pushcart Prizes and is a past recipient of the Redwood Empire Mensa Award for Creative Nonfiction, the Honolulu Weekly Nonfiction Award, the Jodi Stutz Memorial Prize in Poetry, the Ann Fields Poetry Prize, the Academy of American Poets Award, the Robert Browning Award for Dramatic Monologue, and Arts Council Silicon Valley Fellowships in Poetry and The Novel. BEFORE THE CITY, his first poetry collection, took First Place at the 2003 San Diego Book Awards. Wright is also the author of the companion novels PUNAHOU BLUES and MOLOKA’I NUI AHINA, both set in Hawaii. He was a Visiting Fellow at the 2009 International Writers Conference in Hong Kong, where he represented the Pacific Rim region of Hawaii and lectured with Pulitzer Prize winner Gary Snyder. He was also a Visiting Writer at the 2010 Martha’s Vineyard Residency in Edgartown, Mass., the 2011 Artist in Residence at Milkwood International, Czech Republic, the 2014 Resident Scholar at the Earthskin Artist Colony in New Zealand, and the 2016 Artist in Residence at the Eckerö Mail and Customs House in the Åland Islands, Finland. Wright’s futuristic thriller, THE END, MY FRIEND, and his second poetry collection, THE WIDOW FROM LAKE BLED, were both released in 2013. He was nominated an unprecedented three times in three different categories at the 2013 San Diego Book Awards. His third poetry collection, NOTES ABOVE WATER, was published in 2014. Wright’s second play, Asylum Uncle, opened at the Secret Theatre’s LIC Festival in New York on November 4th, 2016. His third play, Rag Of Man, opened at the Manhattan Repertory Theatre on February 22nd, 2017. His original screenplays have won ten awards at film festivals around the world, including Los Angeles CineFest, Colortape International Film Festival (Brisbane, Australia), Genre Celebration Festival (Shanghai, China), Mediterranean Film Festival (Syracuse, Italy) and The Monkey Bread Tree Film Awards in London.