John D Scrimgeour

John D Scrimgeour

Professional Details

Title: Professor
Office: MH-249B
Phone: 978-542-6494

Spring Courses

Cat. # Term Course # Title
1232 01 ENL422 Creative Writing Workshop: Fiction
2157 S1 ENG818 Poetry Workshop
2779 01 ENL230 Introduction to Poetry
3747 D1 ENG996 Manuscript Capstone in Writing

Professional Biography

J.D. Scrimgeour holds a BA and MA in English from Columbia University and an MFA (in poetry) and PhD in American Literature from Indiana University.  He has published two collections of poetry, The Last Miles (2005) and Territories (2013); and two books of creative nonfiction, Spin Moves (2000) and Themes For English B: A Professor’s Education In and Out of Class (2006), which won the AWP Award for Creative Nonfiction.

With the musician and composer Philip Swanson, he formed Confluence, which blends poetry and music.  Confluence has performed at such venues as the Massachusetts Poetry Festival, the Robert Frost Place, and the AWP Conference. Confluence’s first CD, Ogunquit, was released by MSR Classics in 2009 and has been nominated for a Spoken Word Grammy Award.

His poetry has appeared in magazines such as Poetry, Ploughshares, Colorado Review, River Styx, Tar River Poetry, Connecticut Review, and Diner, and it has won awards from the National Society of Arts and Letters and the Academy of American Poets.  He was named a finalist for a Massachusetts Cultural Council Individual Artist grant in poetry for 2008.

Scrimgeour’s nonfiction has appeared in such publications as The Boston Globe magazine, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Creative Nonfiction, Thought & Action, and Organica.  His essay, “My Outfield,” won Creative Nonfiction’s Writing about Baseball contest and appeared in the anthology, The Anatomy of Baseball.

In addition to his work in Confluence, Scrimgeour collaborates with artists in other media to stretch the range of creative writing.  Among his collaborations are works with photographer Kim Mimnaugh and choreographer Caitlin Corbett.  Recently, he worked with his sons, Aidan and Guthrie, and Director Peter Sampieri to produce a musical,  Only Human, which was performed at Ames Hall in Salem in the Summer of 2014.

Scrimgeour serves as Coordinator of Creative Writing at Salem State, a position he held for many years previously. In this position, he not only ran the Salem State Writers’ Series, but he organized several special events, including symposia on Jazz and the Arts; the Creative Process; and Writing, Class, and Education.  He created and directs the Salem Poetry Seminar, a free week-long summer program for select student poets at Massachusetts public colleges and universities.  He is also a founding member of the Salem Writers’ Group.


Professional Interests

Creative Writing, especially poetry, creative nonfiction, and collaborations with other arts 


American and African American Literature

Literature of Sport



Coordinator of Creative Writing

Director of the Salem Poetry Seminar 

Selected Publications

Spin Moves (Pecan Grove Press, 2000)

The Last Miles (Fine Tooth Press, 2005)

Themes For English B: A Professor's Education In and Out of Class (U of Georgia P, 2006)

Ogunquit, by Confluence: a cd of poetry and music (MSR Classics, 2009)

Territories (The Last Automat Press, 2013)

Personal Interests