Patricia Ann McNair has lived 98 percent of her life in the Midwest. She’s managed a gas station, sold pots and pans door to door, tended bar and breaded mushrooms, worked on the trading floor of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and taught aerobics. Today she is an Associate Professor in the Department of Creative Writing of Columbia College Chicago, where she directs the undergraduate fiction program. She is the recipient of Columbia’s Teaching Excellence Award, and was nominated for the Carnegie Foundation’s US Professor of the Year. McNair’s short story collection, The Temple of Air, was awarded Book of the Year by the Chicago Writers Association, Southern Illinois University’s Devil’s Kitchen Reading Award, and a finalist award by the Society of Midland Authors. It was called “violently creative” by the Chicago Sun Times, and “plainspoken yet imaginative, complexly unnerving” by Booklist. Her fiction and creative nonfiction have been published widely and received a number of honors including Pushcart Prize nominations, four Illinois Arts Council Awards, and the Solstice Short Story Award. She is currently at work on a novel, Climbing the House of God Hill, and a collection of essays, And These Are the Good Times.