Catherine Gammon

Photo by Heather von Rohr

Catherine Gammon was born in Los Angeles, California. She earned a BA in philosophy at Pomona College, and an MFA in fiction from the Writers’ Workshop in 1976.

Catherine was a fellow of the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown in 1977 and 1981, and worked for many years in the type production department of the New York Review of Books. In 1991 her novel Isabel Out of the Rain was published by Mercury House, and in 1992 she  joined the faculty of the MFA program at the University of Pittsburgh.

Her fiction has appeared in Ploughshares, The North American Review, Kenyon  Review, Manoa, Central Park, Fiction International, Other Voices, and other journals. She served as fiction editor for Cape Discovery, an anthology of  fiction and poetry by Fine Arts Work Center fellows.

Catherine has rceived NEA and New York Fellowship for the Arts grants for her fiction, as well as a creative research fellowship from the American Antiquarian Society for work in the Esther Forbes Papers and the Cotton Mather collection in preparation for a novel about the Salem witchcraft trials.

In 2001 she left both the academy and the literary marketplace to begin residential training at San Francisco Zen Center. In 2005 she was ordained a Soto Zen priest by Tenshin Reb Anderson, and in 2010 served as Shuso, or head monk, for the spring practice period at Green Dragon Temple/Green Gulch Farm.

In January 2011 she returned to Pitt’s MFA program as a visiting professor, and hopes to continue reweaving her life in writing into her life in Zen.


Isabel Out of the Rain (Mercury House, 1991)

Cape Discovery: The Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center Anthology [editor] (Sheep Meadow Press, 1994)

Beauty and the Beast: Stories from the 1970s (, 2012)

Sorrow (Braddock Avenue Books, 2013)

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